Everything You Need to Know About Bed Bugs

Bed Bugs

Bed bugs continue to be a problem that affects not only public places but also residential homes in great numbers.  Our Trius Pest Management pest specialists are often asked by homeowners about bed bugs:

  • Can bed bugs really affect me?
  • Don’t bed bug problems only exist in cheap motels and low-income housing?
  • How can I protect myself from bed bugs?

The National Pest Management Association and the University of Kentucky recently surveyed pest professionals from across the country in a survey called the 2015 Bugs Without Borders Survey and found some interesting results.  According to the survey, over 90% of professionals battled bed bugs in apartments, condominiums and single-family homes. You can read the complete study findings by clicking here.

In an effort to increase awareness about bed bugs with our customer base and educate them about bed bugs we compiled the following list of What You Need to Know About Bed Bugs:

  • Bed bugs do not discriminate! Infestations of bed bugs are found and treated by pest professionals in both low-income housing and homes of the rich and even famous.  If you are a warm-blooded human or mammal you will make a perfectly acceptable meal for bed bugs and you are at risk of an infestation.
  • Bed bugs are excellent hitchhikers as they can attach themselves to your person or hop a ride home with you in your luggage, purse, briefcase or other personal belonging. You can easily pick up bed bugs in a cab, movie theatre or virtually any public place if they are present.  Increased travel certainly puts you at higher risk of getting bed bugs since they commonly infest hotel and motel rooms feeding on their hosts while they sleep.
  • Clutter may contribute to the problem. When clutter is present an infestation can go unnoticed and become more difficult to treat. Bed bugs like to hide during the day and feed on their hosts at night.  Areas of clutter offer more hiding places for bed bugs and makes it more difficult to discover and control this problem pest.
  • To lower your risk of infestations do not bring home used furniture or bedding. If you must bring home a second hand piece be sure to do a very thorough inspection with a flashlight and, if possible, ask the previous owner if they ever had bed bugs.
  • A homeowner should be aware of what a bed bug infestation looks like. If you or someone in your household has unexplained, itchy welts on their body consider a bed bug inspection.  Be on the lookout for bug casings in the folds of your mattress or small blood stains on your bedding often described as looking like pepper.  Keep in mind that bed bugs are quite difficult to find and detect so the signs of an early infestation can be discreet.
  • Don’t attempt do-it-yourself methods to control bed bugs. Catching an infestation early is key to control.  Call a professional at the first sign that you may have bed bugs.  Infestations can grow quickly and will be much more costly to control once they have spread.
  • Do not feel ashamed if you discover you have bed bugs. Once again, bed bugs do not discriminate and having an infestation is not a sign that your house is unclean.

For a free bed bug estimate or to learn more visit the Trius Pest Management website www.triuspest.com.

The Tables Turned: My Encounter with Bed Bugs

Working in pest control, I am constantly fielding questions and concerns from clients about the mysterious bites they’ve discovered on their body. Understandably, no one wants to accept the fact that they’ve possible had a run in with bed bugs, but I often have to be the bearer of that bad news. Never did I think I’d be on the other side of that coin, but during a recent trip to Montreal, just that happened.

I woke up to a distinct, linear trail of three welts on my right forearm –“breakfast, lunch and dinner”, as they call it. Judging from the two nearby bites, an appetizer and dessert were had, as well. Throughout the morning, 15 to 20 additional bites would reveal themselves on various areas of my body that were exposed while I slept, mainly my arms, legs and ankles. Of course I would get eaten alive by bed bugs on my first night of vacation, I thought.

The ensuing panic was all too familiar to me, but the difference this time is that I was the one doing the panicking instead of the reassuring. My boyfriend, who made it through the night seemingly unscathed, was of little help. “I mean, they kinda look like mosquito bites to me” was his response to the welts emerging all over my body. He wasn’t entirely wrong, either; it’s nearly impossible for anyone (dermatologists included) to distinguish a bed bug bite from a mosquito bite or any other insect bite. The “one, two, three” bite pattern is usually a good indicator of bed bug bites, but other insects like fleas have been known to bite in a similar fashion. Only after a quick inspection was I able to confirm my suspicions by discovering a live bed bug nestled in between the mattress and boxspring on the side of the bed where I had slept.

Thankfully, my bites have since healed, and although the psychological trauma still lingers, I don’t seem to have brought any unwanted guests home with me.

With a good month remaining of vacation season, many of us will be taking off for one last getaway before the humdrum of fall begins. Here are some simple travel tips to help you avoid an experience similar to mine:

  1. Keep your suitcases and other luggage off of the bed and floor. Luggage may be the number one mode of transportation for bed bugs, so don’t use luggage racks, closet shelves, or drawers during your stay. In fact, you may want to consider storing your belongings in the bathtub until you are confident your location is free and clear of bed bugs; this way you can easily grab your belongings and run if you find anything suspicious during your inspection.
  2. Perform a quick visual inspection of the bed and surrounding area(s) when you arrive. Bed bugs are drawn to us as we emit heat and exhale CO2 during our sleep, and are likely to be hiding in immediate sleeping areas. If possible, pull the bed and headboard away from the wall and look for any potential live bugs. Popular hiding spots include on or behind baseboards, and within the grooves and crevices of the mattress, bedding and adjacent furniture.Contrary to popular belief, these tiny vampires are absolutely visible to the naked eye at various stages. Eggs and 1st instars will be difficult to see, but all other stages are easily seen. Look for something shaped like an apple seed with horizontal stripes running across their backs. The bugs are normally very flat and brown except after a feeding when their bodies are red and engorged. Even if no bugs are found, continue to look for other telltale signs of bed bug activity including dark brown/rust colored droppings in the seams and corners of the mattress and boxspring. Be certain to completely strip all bedding and linens from the bed while performing your inspection.
  3. Play it safe. With bed bugs, it is always better to err on the side of caution. If you believe that you have been bitten by a bed beg or stayed in a location with active bed bugs, make sure to launder any and everything that could potentially bring the bugs home with you. All stages of bed bugs (eggs, nymphs and adults) die at 122° F, so about an hour in the dryer on “high” should be sufficient. If you still believe you may have an issue once you are home, it is always best to reach out to a professional pest management firm. Bed bugs are not something you want to try and DIY. Your well-intended efforts may actually end up worsening your situation, and push the bugs into areas of your house where they previously were absent.

For more information about bed bugs or to get a free estimate for treatment, visit us online at www.triuspest.com.
Natavia Hayes is the Customer Service Coordinator at Trius Pest Management based in Boonton, NJ. You can reach Natavia directly at (973) 335-2777 or email her at natavia@triuspest.com.

New Jersey Termite Exterminator Discusses Warning Signs of Termites

New Jersey Termite Exterminator – Trius Pest Management reviews Top 5 Warning Signs of Termites


Subterranean termites, the most common termite species here in New Jersey, live in colonies underneath your home. They typically emerge when the ground thaws, entering your structure through cracks in the foundation. Termites are often referred to as ‘silent invaders’.  According to the National Pest Management Association, these wood destroying insects are responsible for $5 Billion worth of damage per year!  Homeowners may unknowingly have termites eating away inside the walls of their home doing damage to their largest investment.

There are some subtle signs that termites have invaded your structure. Be aware that the absence of these signs does not guarantee that you don’t have termites.  Look out for these termite warning signs around your home:

  1. You see swarms of insects inside your home. A reproductive termite swarm happens when large numbers of winged termites emerge from the ground. This typically happens on a warm day in the spring or early summer. These reproductive termites are looking to pair up, reproduce and develop their own colony.  You may not see the actual swarm happen, they occur quickly, but, finding a pile of wings usually in the basement during the spring time, may indicate that a termite colony is present in your home.  A swarm is a telltale sign that termites are present and you should contact a pest management professional.  If possible, capture some of those swarmers or their wings in a glass jar to show to the pest management professional so they can make a positive identification of the insect.  And please do not apply any chemicals or insecticides. This may cause the termites to move into different areas of the house.
  2. Evidence of termite activity turns up during a real estate transaction. Whether you are buying or selling a home an inspection is typically conducted and may uncover termite damage. The buyer typically wants to know if termites are active or inactive. Note that this is just not that easy to determine and may, in fact, be impossible. Termites can live inside the walls of your home.  It is not feasible to inspect the frame of an entire home and claim it to be ‘termite free’.  But, evidence of termites is also not a reason to walk away from a transaction unless the damage is extensive. When treated properly by a pest management professional, termites can be controlled and your property can be protected.
  3. Termites are uncovered during a home renovation project. Sometimes homeowners are in the midst of a remodel when termite damage is discovered.  Termites may be living and feeding inside the walls or foundation.  This can be quite distressing as damage may be significant, homeowners were probably completely unaware of the problem and reconstruction costs can be significant.  Again, when the problem is addressed by a professional pest management company they can work to address the problem, correct the damage and protect your structure into the future.
  4. You discover hollowed out wood around your home. While inspecting your home or doing routine maintenance you discover a wooden section that when tapped on sounds ‘hollowed out’.  Since termites eat wood from the inside out this finding should be further investigated as possible termite damage.  If it is determined that termites were to blame, the wood will need to be replaced and a termite treatment by a pest management professional should be completed.  After termites are discovered on a property, ask about installing termite monitors around the perimeter of your home to alert you to further termite activity.
  1. Mud tunnels or tubes about the size of the width of a pencil are visible along interior or exterior walls. Termite tunnels are built to allow the insects to travel from their nest to their food source (typically the wood in and around your home) in a protected environment.

Being told that you have termites can be quite unsettling, chances are you didn’t realize that the problem existed.  A termite infestation is not a problem that should be ignored as damage can occur quickly and repair costs can be significant.  Termite problems are not a do-it-yourself project; a pest management professional should be contacted who can treat the structure with one (or more) of the numerous methods available to them today, including:

  • Liquid
  • Borates
  • Structural Modification
  • Baits and Monitors

Remember, termites are typically hidden inside the walls of a structure and simply looking inside the walls periodically to confirm they are gone is not practical. If your home has been invaded by termites an ongoing plan to control them and to control future infestations is in order to protect your largest investment, your home.

Click here to request a Termite Inspection today.



Indoor Allergy Triggers

New Jersey Homeowners – What you need to know about Indoor Allergy Triggers


Do you have a runny nose, congestion, red eyes, or trouble breathing? Do you assume that means that spring is here and you are reacting to pollen? Actually, some of the symptoms that people blame on spring time allergies could in fact be a reaction to pests in our homes and office buildings. Many people don’t realize that not only can roaches and mice carry diseases like e-coli and salmonella, they can also cause allergic reactions in many people.

Research has shown that common household pests like mice, rats, and roaches can all cause allergic reactions. According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology (ACAAI) the saliva, feces, and shedding body parts of cockroaches can trigger allergies. When small particles containing body parts and fluids become airborne they may aggravate a person’s allergies in the same way that a dust mite can. Research has also found that roaches could be exacerbating asthma in people who are prone to it. A study by Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health found that higher exposure to cockroach dust may explain why some New York City children have asthma while others do not.

The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) came together with the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) to look into the connection between pests and people suffering from allergic reactions. According to the survey of approximately five hundred doctors that specialize in allergies, rodents in particular can be a trigger for allergies. Ninety-seven percent of the doctors in this survey concluded that eradicating pests from homes is an important measure in preventing asthma and allergy symptoms. Many doctors in the survey concluded that roaches caused severe problems and more than half of them stated that rodents were the second most problematic pest when it came to allergies. According to research from the Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine, the primary source of allergens from rats and mice is their urine, specifically in proteins called pheromones. Because the allergen can be in the urine and fecal matter you don’t even need to see the rodent to have the adverse reaction. The proteins in the rodent’s urine are so allergenic that roughly one third of people who frequently come in contact with rodents will develop allergies to them.

In the AAFA/NPMA survey, ninety percent of the doctors concluded that it was a good idea to consult with a pest management professional if there is a possibility of a pest problem. The right professionals will not only know how to get rid of your current pest problem but recognize the importance of cleanup after the infestation is under control.

Trius Pest Management will not only take steps to control the infestation at hand but we offer a vacuuming and sanitizing service that uses an advanced HEPA filter to ensure that the allergens left behind from pests are properly removed. The three most important steps to relieve the allergy symptoms are to remove the source of the allergen (the pest), remove the traces of the allergen (the particles in the air that carry the shed skin or pheromones), and exclude the pest(s) from returning. Restore your healthy home environment; Trius Pest Management can help you get there. Request a Free Estimate today!

Trius for a Healthy New Jersey Home Environment


Getting healthy in 2016 was on many people’s New Year’s resolution list. By this time in the year many people have strayed a little (or let’s be honest, a lot) from their goals. As the year goes on it only gets worse. There are now more parking spots at the gym; the line at the health food store is shorter, while the line at the fast food joint grows longer. Sometimes motivating yourself to eat right and exercise is difficult, but there is another way to keep yourself healthy and that is to have a healthy home environment.

So how do you make your home a healthy home? To create a healthy home environment you need to remove what will make you sick. Do you know what one of the biggest culprits is in an un-healthy house? Pests! Not only do pests such as mice, roaches, and flies have a huge “yuck” factor, they can actually make you and your family sick if they invade your home. Here are a few things that you and your pest professional can do to help prevent and control pests:

Keeping mice away is important because mice are known to carry a number of really scary diseases like salmonellosis, Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome, and Lymphocytic Chorio-meningitis to name just a few. You don’t actually have to come in contact with the mouse itself in order to get sick. Many disease can be transferred by the mouse’s urine and fecal matter which they will leave anywhere. Mice can come into your home at any time of the year, but most often they will invade in the fall and winter. Make sure that any cracks or holes in your foundation are sealed in order to make it harder for them to enter or contact Trius and ask about our Rodent Exclusion Service.

Keeping cockroaches out of your home is a must as well. Did you know that there is a correlation between roaches and asthma? Research shows that cockroach allergens are a major contributor to asthma. Cockroaches also carry diseases on their legs and bodies and then distribute these diseases wherever they go. If the cockroaches are in your kitchen they can spread disease that cause food poisoning on your food, plates, cooking utensils, or anything else on which they walk. Roaches need water, so to help reduce the chance of a roach infestation make sure to fix leaky pipes. Roaches also love grease, food debris and cardboard. So keeping a clean and tidy home are other important factors to keep roaches away.

There is no doubt that flies are annoying, but did you know that they can also make your house unhealthy? When a fly lands on food they use their saliva to liquefy it before they consume it. That means that when a fly lands on something in your house it will deposit small amounts of fly saliva along with pathogens. It takes just a matter of seconds for the pathogens to transfer from the fly to a surface in your house where you will come in contact with the disease causing agent. To help reduce the number of flies in your home remember to always keep garbage in a covered garbage pail.

While some pests can make you sick others can alert you to an unhealthy situation. Moisture pests like cave crickets, centipedes, millipedes, isopods and silverfish indicated a high moisture level in your home. Various molds may develop in these areas of high moisture and can make a family very sick.

Unlike exercise and eating right, when it comes to making your house healthy you can actually sit back, relax and have someone else take care of the work. Trius Pest Management will come to your home and not only get rid of any pests you have, but they will also find ways to stop pests from coming back. Click here for a free estimate.

New Jersey Pest Control – The Ultimate Break-Up Guide for Pests & Your NJ Home



It is February and love is in the air! Valentine’s Day reminds us of all the things we love. From chocolate to our significant other, the list of things you love may be long, but there is little doubt that pests like mice, termites and other insects are not on your list. Pests love your home for three very simple reasons: food, water, and shelter. In order to break-off the love affair between pests and your home you should take a few important steps. Here is the ultimate break-up guide:

Lock the door and throw away the key: Well, this is figurative, but you get the idea. Excluding pests from your home in the first place is the best option. First you need to find the “door” that the pests are using to get into your home. It is unlikely they are entering through an open front door during the winter months. Instead they are creating their own “doors” through cracks and crevices in your home. Remember, a “door” for a mouse can be a crack or hole in your wall the size of a dime and if the pests that are plaguing your home are bugs the door can be even smaller. Once you do find these holes make sure to fill them with the appropriate material. Silicone caulk works great in most situations, and copper mesh is also a good alternative for larger gaps. Also remember that if a crack in your foundation is a door for pests, an improperly sealed vent can be a super-highway. Make sure that dryer and bathroom vents and drainpipes are properly sealed in order to keep pests out.

Be a bad party host: Have you ever been to a party where the host didn’t serve any food or drinks? My guess is you would decline the invitation to that party next year. So make sure that pests consider you that type of party host. There are some very obvious ways to do this. First, vacuuming often is critical. Not only will it remove food crumbs that have fallen to the floor, it is a great way to keep spiders and their webs away as well. Another important tip is to clean liquid spills quickly. Liquids, especially those containing sugar, attract a variety of pests from ants to mice.

There are also some less obvious ways that you can keep food out of your unwanted party guest’s hands. Make sure food is stored properly. In order to keep pests like ants and Indian meal moths out, a plastic container with a tight fitting lid works well. If you have a problem with mice or rats, glass containers with tight fitting lids may be a better option. Keep food off of your counters. Fresh fruits may be tempting treats to more than just your loved ones and pests enjoy easy access to snack as well. Refrigerators not only keep things cool, they keep food items safe from pests as well.

Find someone else to break the news: When it comes to pest infestations, don’t worry about letting them down easy. Make a simple call to Trius Pest Management and we’ll do the dirty work for you.

This Valentine’s Day, have Trius rid your home of pests, rodents and nuisance wildlife. Simply click here for a free estimate. Spend time with those you love, not just those that love your house!


North Jersey Mouse Control Tips


North Jersey Mouse Control – Tips for Keeping Mice Out this Winter

The winter started out relatively mild, but as is typical in New Jersey, that mild start did not last forever. Now it really feels like winter, not just for us, but for pests. Mice that previously might have been able to survive outside now must find shelter, and depending on how well you have secured your home, the shelter they find may be with you!

So how do you stop mice from coming into your home? You must remove all possible entry points. Since a mouse can climb through a hole that is as small as a quarter of an inch or the size of a dime, this can be a very daunting task! The three most common entry points for mice to enter a home is:

  • Cracks and crevices
  • Vents and drains
  • Doors and windows

Cracks and crevices. You may find cracks and crevices throughout your house but the place where they are most common, and most concerning, are in your foundation. Checking your foundation carefully is key. Walk around the perimeter of your home, if you find cracks that are a quarter of an inch or larger, make sure to fill them with a silicone based caulk.

Vents and drain pipes. Mice are capable of vertical climbs through pipes and may use these openings as their own personal highways into your home. Check the pipe itself for gnaw marks and debris used for nesting like scraps of material or leaves. Remove debris to ensure air can flow through and then install the appropriate size vent cover or wire mesh to ensure that rodents cannot enter.

Windows and doors. Aging windows can begin to see gaps around the trim and allow easy entry for mice. Basement windows are a big culprit and often ignored entryway for mice and other rodents. Leaving air conditioning units in your windows over the winter is not only inefficient for your energy bill but a common way for rodents to enter. As for doorways, the small area between the door and the threshold is a possible entry point for mice. One way to stop mice (and for that matter drafts) from entering through the door is to ensure that good working door sweeps are installed on all of your exterior doors. Also, be sure to close your garage doors immediately after entering the home. Double check the sides of your garage doors, that is another popular entry point for mice to get inside.

Keeping mice out of your home is far better and healthier for your family than eradicating them after they enter. It is not just unnerving to see mice in your home, it is unhealthy. Mice spread a number of potentially harmful diseases. If you do not feel that you can find all the “hidden entrances” that mice might find or create, there is an alternative. Trius this season for rodent exclusion services. Having a professional, who understands the habits and biology of mice can help to give you an advantage over them. Learn more or request your free quote by clicking here for North Jersey Mouse Control.

Firewood Tips from the Pros


The 2015 Holiday season set records with its warm weather. Although some people felt the need to turn on the air conditioner when they were baking their holiday cookies and holiday dinners, this kind of warm weather will not last long into 2016. There will be time this winter when sitting in front of a warm fire is exactly what will take the chill from a cold winter’s night. A warm hearth is wonderful, but make sure to take a few precautions to ensure that when you bring warmth into your house you are not also bringing in pests!

Leaning out your back door to grab a log for the fire seems very convenient, but this convenience comes at a price. Keeping your wood pile close to your home encourages both mice and termites! Although it means a longer walk in the cold, our Trius pest professionals suggest wood piles be kept at least twenty feet from your home to cut down your chances of an infestation. In the best case scenario, you should keep your firewood covered to keep out moisture and the wood should be raised off the ground. By keeping some air space under the cover and under the pile you will allow air to flow and the wood will stay drier.

Mice and termites are not the only pests that are attracted to wood piles. Spiders and other small creatures like beetles also make their homes in wood. Before you bring the wood into your home it is a good idea to give it a strong tap on the ground. This tap will help to dislodge spiders and insects that may be using the log as a home. This is especially important if you do not know exactly where your firewood was harvested. Firewood that was harvested in other areas of the country could harbor invasive pests. Most experts recommend that you get your firewood from a reputable person and that the firewood is not moved more than fifty miles from its origin.

Even if you are able to source your firewood from someplace close, it is a good idea to limit the amount of wood you bring into your house at any given time. It is best to only bring in enough firewood for the current fire. Even though it is more convenient to bring in a large amount of wood at one time that creates a great opportunity for any pests that are able to enter your home to start roaming.

Lastly, if you do find that pests have entered your home on the firewood, never treat your firewood with pesticides. Not only do the chemicals often cause pests to burrow into the wood, making the chemicals ineffective, even worse, when you burn the wood you will release those chemicals into your home. Many chemicals can become very dangerous when they are burned.

If you find that pests do enter your home call Trius Pest today at 800-834-3935 or book your free estimate by clicking here. A pest professional will be able to help identify the kind of pest you have, how best to treat for it, and in many cases how to completely avoid having them in your home in the future.

Choose the Right New Jersey Firm to Get Rid of Bed Bugs Fast


Bed bugs continue to be a problem across homes and businesses in New Jersey and the nation and the pest doesn’t seem to be going away any time soon.  To make matters worse, according to the National Pest Management Association, bed bugs continue to be the most difficult pest to treat.   So, if you find yourself in the unfortunate situation of figuring out how to get rid of bed bugs there are a couple of things that you should know to limit your pain and frustration and gain control quickly:

  1. Contact a pest management professional at the very first sign of the problem.
  2. Contact the very best pest management firm you can find.

Our first tip is very important and pretty self-explanatory.  The faster you address a bed bug problem the quicker you will contain the problem within your home and eliminate the infestation.  In other words, treating your bedroom for bed bugs is one thing.  Treating 4 bedrooms, a living room, basement and den is a much more difficult proposition and a much more costly one to the homeowner.  So the bottom line is if you suspect you may have a bed bug problem contact a professional immediately!

The second tip is equally as important.  If you contact the wrong bed bug company: one that is inexperienced, one that doesn’t offer cutting edge techniques or a multi-tactical approach, one that does not communicate well with the homeowner or does not put the hard work into the inspection phase of the job you could lose valuable time in stopping these pests from infesting more rooms in your home.  Here are some ways to identify which pest management firm will get rid of bed bugs from your home in the quickest, most painless way possible:

  1. Research how long a pest management firm has been in business.
  2. Research how long a pest management firm has been in the bed bug business.
  3. Ask if the company offers different treatment approaches to get rid of bed bugs.
  4. Find out if the company offers a satisfaction guarantee.
  5. Does the company have a positive service history online, for places like Angie’s List or the Better Business Bureau?

Do you suspect you may have bed bugs? Receive a free quote from Trius Pest to get rid of bed bugs by clicking here.

Controlling Pests this Halloween

Slinking spiders, scurrying rats, and swooping bats, normally, these creepy creatures are meant to be avoided, but at Halloween we are able to embrace pests that on any other day we would never want to see. In honor of Halloween, here are some fun facts about these scary pests, and some ways to keep them out of your house every day BUT Halloween.

Spiders: Did you know that spiders live on every continent except Antarctica and there are over 40,000 varieties worldwide? In your garden, spiders may play a pivotal role in keeping down the number of plant-killing bugs, but very few of us want to share our homes with these eight legged creatures. To keep spiders out of your home, try to fill all cracks and holes with silicone caulk. Another “green” idea is to put peppermint oil around your windows and doors. One could argue that the best defense against spiders in your home is your vacuum. Not only will a vacuum easily remove the spider itself, it will also remove the cobwebs which in many cases means you remove the spider’s home, nursery, and food store in one suctioning motion.

Rats: Much like spiders, rats can enter your home through relatively small cracks and holes. Did you know that a rat can squeeze its body through a hole the size of a quarter? That is a really small space for an animal that can grow to be eighteen inches long! There are a couple of actions you can take to keep rats away. First, fill any holes you find around the perimeter of your home. Second, make sure that you don’t have leaky pipes. Like many other pests, rats are drawn to moisture. Lastly, never feed pets outside and leave leftover food scraps there. On the inside be sure to keep food off your counters and in tightly sealed containers. Leaving food around whether it is indoors or out encourages rodents as well as many other pests.

Bats: Bats are unlikely to crawl through the same holes as rats, but they can still get into your home. Bats are plentiful. Did you know that according to Bat Conservation International, bats make up one-fifth of the mammal population on Earth? In our area, most people come in contact with bats when they come into our attics. Although people often talk about being afraid of getting rabies from bat bites, an even greater risk is becoming ill from bat feces, also known as guano. The fungi that is harbored in bat droppings can cause the lung disease, histoplasmosis. In most areas, bats are protected by law, so bat removal is never a good DIY project. Instead, hire a professional pest management company like Trius Pest Management to not only remove the bats, but also perform exclusion to your attic or chimney to ensure that the bats do not return.

Halloween pests are fun when they are decorations, not when they are actually in your home. Taking precautions will help to keep pests out. If you continue to have pests, contact a pest professional to help you make your home less hospitable to these slinking, scurrying and swooping creatures!