Poison-Free Pest Control
At Bugaboo Pest Control, we perform all of our treatments in an environmentally-conscious way that minimizes the need for pesticides. But quite often, we’re asked by customers if we can solve their pest problems using no pesticides at all.
In most cases, the answer is yes. Many household pest problems can be treated without using any pesticides at all. But there are a few things you need to understand before deciding whether poison-free pest control is for you.
The first thing you have to understand is that not every pest problem can be solved without pesticides. Many can be, but some can’t. We’ll tell you up-front if that’s the case.
Secondly, non-chemical pest control is likely to take a bit longer and may require more work on your part. For example, many pest problems can be drastically reduced by taking care of moisture problems, cutting back tree limbs that overhang your home, sealing holes and other pest entry areas, installing door sweeps or window screens, moving or trimming shrubbery, using inorganic mulches, and so forth.
Non-chemical strategies like these are always good steps when solving pest problems, but they are absolutely essential to an effective non-chemical pest control strategy. We can perform these services for you, you can shop around for other professionals to do them, or you can do them yourself; but one way or another, they have to be done if you want your non-toxic pest control program to be successful.
Finally, solving your pest problem non-chemically probably will cost you a bit more because it requires more work on our part, too. The exact difference will vary depending on the nature of the job, but on average, non-chemical pest control costs about 20 percent more than treating the same problems conventionally.
The Importance of Exclusion in Pest Control
Most pests get into your home from outside, so making your home as pest-proof as possible is an essential, effective, non-toxic way to minimize pest problems. It’s also a long-lasting one, if it’s done properly.
Exclusion, or pest-proofing, takes many forms. It can involve things like caulking and sealing cracks, installing door sweeps or window screens, sealing construction gaps, and installing pest-resistant dryer vents and chimney caps. Although this can be a lot of work, it has quite a few advantages.
For one thing, when done properly, exclusion is long-lasting. Sealing squirrels out of your attic is a lot more long-lasting than coming back every year to trap and remove a new batch that moved in. The same goes for rat- and mouse-proofing, and even perimeter pest control. If pests are sealed out properly, they’ll be kept out for years.
The second advantage to exclusion as a pest-control strategy is that it’s broad-spectrum. For example, if you hire us to seal raccoons out of your attic and chimney, you’re also sealing out squirrels, birds, bats, and pretty much any other animal who may be tempted to move in.
These are just a few of the reasons why almost all of our poison-free pest control jobs begin with exclusion. Want to hear more? Give us a call.
Non-Toxic Pest Traps
Trapping is probably the most underutilized technology in pest control. That’s because for most pest problems, it’s easier and less time-consuming to apply poisons than it is to use traps. Because we specialize in earth-friendly pest control, however, we make much more extensive use of traps than most pest control companies.
With proper selection and use, traps can be remarkably effective. For example, heat traps like the one in the picture on the top of this page can be very effective in controlling flea infestations. There also are traps that are baited for the specific control of most species of beetles, weevils, moths, flies, and some other insects; and traps that use tuned ultraviolet lamps to attract and catch flying insects.
Rodent control is another type of pest control that can be done completely non-chemically, in the great majority of cases. Depending on the job, it usually requires some combination of sanitation, habitat modification, exclusion, and trapping. There are a wide variety of rodent traps available, ranging from old-fashioned (but still effective) “snap traps,” to a wide variety of multiple-catch traps that are great for heavy rodent infestations, or for use in vacation homes that are unoccupied for long periods of time.
Over the past decade, many poison-free pest control products have become available to pest management professionals. Many of these products are applied like conventional pesticides, but they’re so non-toxic to humans that the EPA classifies them as “poison-free.”
A few of these products have actually been in use for quite a while. For example, diatomaceous earth is a powder made from fossilized sea creatures called diatoms, and has been used in pest control for many years. It doesn’t kill insects by chemical activity, but rather by scratching up the waxy coatings on their bodies and causing them to dehydrate.
Others poison-free pesticides are botanical products extracted from plants, like various mint and citrus oils. They’re natural insecticides that plants and flowers have invented to protect themselves from pests, and humans are finally catching on to how effective these natural products can be.
What is an “Organic Pesticide?”
Enough people have asked us if the products we use are “organic” that we feel compelled to provide a bit of consumer education information, along with a pinch of freshman chemistry, just for good measure.
The word “organic,” in common usage, has come to describe a lot of things that are naturally-derived or which were produced in a manner considered to be in harmony in nature. And you know what? That’s all well and good — if we’re talking about apples and pears. But not when we’re talking about chemicals.
In chemistry, the word “organic” simply means that a compound contains carbon. By this definition, organic chemicals include some of the nastiest, deadliest, most horrendously toxic pesticides ever invented. Obviously, that’s not what people mean when they say they want “organic pest control.” In fact, it’s pretty much the opposite.
That’s why we don’t use the term “organic” to refer to our services or the products that we use. It’s scientifically inaccurate and potentially misleading. It’s also why you should raise your eyebrows if an exterminator tells you that the stuff he’s spraying is “organic.” It probably is, because almost all chemical compounds used as insecticides contain carbon. But that doesn’t mean it’s non-toxic or naturally-derived.
The Bugaboo Pest Control Advantage
Bugaboo Pest Control was founded with earth-friendly pest control in mind, so we’ve already had about three decades to experiment with effective, non-chemical ways to control pests. We’ve learned which problems can be effectively controlled non-chemically and how to do it. But just as importantly, we’ve learned which problems can’t be solved without at least some use of pesticides.
What this means to you is that if a pest problem can be solved using a poison-free approach, then we’re the most experienced company around to do it. In many cases, we can provide effective, non-toxic pest control solutions even when other exterminators have said it was impossible.
But by the same token, we know that some pest problems simply can’t be solved without at least a minimal use of pesticides; and when that’s the case, we’ll let you know. We’ll explain why, where, and which pesticides are needed, and we’ll devise an approach that minimizes pesticide use to the smallest possible amounts of the least-hazardous products that will be effective. But we won’t waste your time and money trying to pull off the impossible.
Please contact us for more information about our poison-free pest control options, or about any of our high-quality services. Thank you for your interest in Bugaboo Pest Control.