Getting Rid Of Pests In The City Of Burlington, NC

June 4, 2020

More individuals are using pesticides because of the growing number of manufacturers. Little do people know that these chemicals are not as effective at killing pests.

There is sufficient evidence that proves the growing pesticide resistance among pests. Pyrethroids, organophosphates, and cyclodienes, three of the most popular agents of pesticides are growing weaker for consumer use. It's not because of the manufacturing process. Rather, it's because pests are developing resistance as days pass by.

Experts reiterate that the same dose does not generate the same effects after continuous usage. If consumers keep using insecticides because of the smallest problems, various pests in their areas develop resistance to these chemicals. In no time, no amount of synthetic pest control measures will hamper the growth and spread of pests.

Professionals recommend using alternatives to pesticides such as biological, mechanical, and natural methods of pest management. The World Health Organization supports this cause, limiting the use of insecticides only when needed. Not only will this manage pesticide resistance but also protects the consumers from the health risks of chemical exposure.

They recommend practicing Integrated Pest Management as a way to control pest populations without using synthetic chemicals. 

What Is Integrated Pest Management?

Also known as IPM and Integrated Pest Control (IPC), Integrated Pest Management is an approach that promotes the economic control of pests. Meaning, it needs to suppress pest populations to reach a low Economic Injury Level (EIL). This is the stage where their damages do not cause loss, damage, repairs, and replacement costs.

It aims to contain pest populations without the use of harmful chemicals unless it is justified. But even when experts use pesticides, they resort to low-impact strategies for environmental protection.

IPM promotes the growth of healthy vegetables and fruits in gardens without damaging the ecosystem and disrupting agroforestry. It is an outstanding approach for safer pest control procedures that can be learned by anyone who wishes to control unwanted insects in their areas. 

History Of IPM

Synthetic insecticides have become available after World War II. During this time, people were only allowed to use these chemicals if they are supervised by qualified entomologists and insecticide experts. This way, they can manage the risks of using these harmful chemicals.

However, as time passed by, pesticides had become commercialized. Due to the market strategies of companies, consumers were driven to buy and use these chemicals without adequate knowledge about it. This increased the incidence of pesticide-related diseases like food poisoning, organ failure, inflammation of the nervous system, and many more.

Did you know that if pregnant individuals are exposed to pesticides, it is enough to cause brain damage and developmental delays to the infant?

This is only one of the reasons why the World Health Organization dissuades consumers to buy and use insecticides without the supervision of an expert, or without a justified reason. 

What Is Involved In Integrated Pest Management?

Experts reiterate that IPM is not a single method for pest control. Rather, it is a series of evaluations, strategies, and decisions. To apply IPM, there are four steps which are as follows: 

Setting Action Thresholds

The first step includes creating a guideline or a standard that will define when pest control is necessary. Even if you see a pest, it doesn't necessarily mean that elimination is apparent. There is a specific threshold it needs to reach, like a certain amount of damage or a specific nuisance. Especially if the pest infestation is critical to economic development, pest control is necessary to prevent and eliminate any more damage. 

Monitoring & Identifying Pests

The second step involves pinpointing the source of the infestation, determining their habits, and identifying the species present in an environment. This allows the expert to gather more data for better decision-making and problem-solving. The findings from this step will define the type of pest control management strategy and the duration of the process. 

Prevention Of Pest Infestations

Experts recommend that before controlling the pest populations in an area, prevention must take place. It could be in the form of cultural methods, predatory methods, and mechanical methods to make the environment pest-resistant. This inhibits more pests from coming in. At the same time, it doesn't allow any insect to escape. This makes pest control measures more effective when applied. 

Controlling Of Pest Populations

After the application of prevention strategies, consumers need to apply specific strategies to control infestations. This includes the following approaches:

Cultural Control

This process involves the modification of standard gardening and farming strategies. An example is crop rotation, which is the process of replacing a crop with a more pest-deterring plant. For example, if you want to eliminate the corn rootworm, you can replace your corn crops with a non-host plant such as soybeans and oats. When the corn rootworm has been completely starved out, they are forced to look for another area to infest. If this happens, you can plant corn again to have a more fulfilling harvest after every season.

Another example of cultural control is sanitation. This is the process of keeping the area clean from any material that could attract pests. An example of these is eliminating weeds that harbor aphids, whiteflies, and mites. This ensures that the farm or garden is unattractive to pest activities.

The third example of cultural control is trap cropping. This is a strategy of providing food for the insects near the crop. Instead of targeting the plants, they will resort to the available food sources that seem safer and more secure to infest.

Host Resistance

Experts believe that plants, as living beings, are as resilient as animals. This is why they promote host resistance, which is the process of letting the hosts thrive on their own. This way, they can develop a tolerance to pests. Some of them even develop repellent properties against unwanted insects. The farmers don't need to do anything because they know that the plants will generate their own method of pest management.

Physical Control

This is another important method of Integrated Pest Management that promotes the installation of barriers such as screens, row covers, and many more. In the household, professionals from Go-Forth Pest Control recommend sealing all possible entryways of pests such as cockroaches, mice, and ants. If you can do it on your own, contact a professional to seal every crack, crevice, and broken shingle. This way, no pest can get in and out of your home. If you decide to apply traps and baits, you can catch more pests since they can't escape.

Mechanical Control

This is directly picking or killing the pests present in an environment. It is known as one of the most cost-effective approaches to IPM. It is better suited for smaller, and more acute pest problems.

However, not every pest can be handpicked. Aphids and whiteflies, for example, are too small. During which case, farmers spray them with high pressurized water, sometimes laced with essential oils. If infestations persist, residents from North Carolina call local exterminators in the city of Burlington, NC. This definitely puts a stop to pest infestations in farms and households.

Biological Control

This is the process of using beneficial organisms to control pest populations. Centuries ago, Chinese farmers saw that ants were helping to control pests in their orchards by preying on caterpillars, bugs, and beetles. So, they collected the nests of specific ant species and cultivated them near their farms. They also provided bamboo runways along the trees to help the ants move easily from one plant to another.

In another example, Southern California experienced a huge loss in the mid-1880s because of the cushions scale pests. No amount of pesticide was able to control these populations, so they sought help from entomologists in Australia and New Zealand. They found out that the small lady beetle preys on the cottony cushion scale pest. That's when they started to cultivate ladybugs in their farms. Until now, this process has been commercialized and improved by experienced farmers and is taught all over the globe.

Chemical Control

This is the last resort of the IPM approach. Consumers are recommended to use chemicals only when the infestations are severe and that no other approach can prevent infestation. The most common chemicals used in households is the mothball. It is effective to repel mosquitoes, cockroaches, and moths from infesting homes, particularly compartments and drawers.

It works by inhibiting the sexual instincts of pests, lowering the rate of reproduction. It also acts as a repellent, making the environment less suitable for pest activities. 

Seek Guidance From A Professional

There are many health risks of using pesticides to eliminate unwanted insects.  As much as possible, learn the methods and apply IPM in your form's and households. Not only will this ensure a healthier ecosystem, but it also promotes peace of mind in families. At least they are assured that their loved ones will not suffer any pesticide-related illness. Seek guidance from a professional that applies Integrated Pest Management. Contact Go-Forth Pest Control and achieve a safe and pest-free home and garden.   

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