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Read tips, tricks, and advice from Extermco's very own termite & pest expert!

Pest Control when the bugs aren’t real… Delusional Parasitosis

Posted on Nov 13, 2015


First and foremost; what is Delusionary Parasitosis?  Delusional Parasitosis is a relatively uncommon disorder in which sufferers hold a delusional belief that they are infested with parasites, such as: lice, mites or bedbugs.

This disorder has been found to originate in various ways, often being rooted in a previous disturbing encounter with an infestation of one of the parasites listed above.  In my personal experience as a pest control operator, it usually starts with an infestation of bedbugs.  The sufferer can offer up such a vivid account of the parasites on their body, that it becomes contagious to their family. In 10 to 25% of all cases, the sensation can be shared by family members. This phenomenon is called folie partagee. Simply meaning “shared madness”

Although delusional disorders are rare, many doctors believe that Delusional Parasitosis is far more common than the statistics suggest.  Before any medical professionals are involved, it’s usually a pest control operator that is making initial contact.

The first and most important thing we can do as being pest professionals is to inspect and rule out any actual parasites or anything that could be biting.   Typically, Delusionary Parasitosis isn’t even considered until having multiple accounts with the same individual.   The next stage between the sufferer and the pest professional is called the “matchbox sign” It’s named for the proclivity of sufferers to present an expert with a matchbox (or other container) said to be holding the parasites.  Usually, it’s full of skin flakes, lint, dirt or some other unknown debris.  After multiple encounters, I try not to directly challenge the claim of being infested, but to firmly and gently direct them to a mental health professional.

Delusional Parasitosis can be a serious condition. People suffering from this condition may self-mutilate, scratching themselves to the point where they can cause serious skin damage and bleeding.  Without help, the condition rarely resolves itself.  

It’s an unconventional collaboration, but with an examination of a medical professional and an inspection from a pest management professional it’s the only way to nail down a diagnosis of Delusionary Parasitosis.


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Sleeping with the Enemy

Posted on Oct 22, 2015


It’s hard to believe that my first ever bedbug service was just a short 6 years ago. Our area has been extremely lucky, that we are just now getting hit full force with the bedbug pandemic. Believe me, when I say full force, I mean FULL FORCE. I went from thinking that bedbugs were small mythological bed creatures, to inspecting and treating multiple properties daily over the course of 7 years. Within that time I have seen the good, the bad and the ugly. Although, there are a few treatment/service options we provide and recommend, I never in my wildest dreams would have thought an option would be just to sleep with the enemy! There is a fairly new product that has hit the market that is called “bedbug pajamas”. That’s correct, it’s just what you’re thinking. It’s full body pajamas that prevents bedbugs from getting on your body while you are sleeping. Although it looks ridiculous and quite possibly the most uncomfortable thing I could imagine sleeping in, I guess it’s better than letting bedbugs feast on you throughout the night. Let me be clear. My advice is always to treat the problem and exterminate the bedbugs. It would never be to simply sleep with the bedbugs. But, if you don’t have a couple extra thousand dollars laying around I guess this is a much cheaper alternative, while you round up the funds for a bedbug professional. If you are interested. You can find them at www.bedbugpajamas.com. Good luck!

 


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Exterminator in Fort Smith Urges residents to Look for Spring Termite Swarms

Posted on Apr 1, 2014


The world’s termites are typically divided up into categories.  The ones that live in and around fort Smith, Arkansas, are frequently classified as subterranean termites.  According to the University of Arkansas’ Division of Agriculture; stats show it is not uncommon for Americans to spend more than 3 billion a year on addressing subterranean termite problems.


Why are subterranean termites such a problem for fort Smith, Arkansas, residents? Fort starters, adult females may produce thousands of offspring each year.  Each batch generally hatches within two weeks. By the second two weeks of live, those offspring are already poised to do some serious damage to a wooden structure.


Spring is generally when the subterranean termites in Fort Smith begin to swarm, mate and take up residence in area homes and businesses.  So between no and the end of May, it’s an excellent time to keep one’s eyes peeled for signs of subterranean termite activity.  We would also recommend keeping our Fort Smith extermination company’s phone number on speed dial.  Signs to look for include; discarded wings, swarms of insects, damaged wood and mud shelter tubes


Depending on the situation, our Fort Smith exterminators may take a multitude of steps to rid an Arkansas home or business of these wood destroying creatures.  The list of those extermination measures may include, but is not restrained to setting up physical barriers (e.g. stainless steel screening), treating the soil with insecticides, utilizing special baits and removing items that the pests need to survive.  Items that tend to attract subterranean termites to a Fort Smith property are overgrown vegetation, wood mulch, wet soil, wet wood and warm temperatures.  That’s why termite activity in Fort Smith tend to be words at certain times of the year.


To learn more about getting rid of subterranean termites in Fort Smith Arkansas home, please contact us at (479)783-1822.  Our Fort Smith exterminators are skilled at controlling termites as well as any other Arkansas common pests.  


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The Signs That You May Require Bedbug Treatment

Posted on Feb 6, 2014


Most people are aware of the serious health risk that bedbugs can cause. Yet, due to their small size and hidden lifestyle, most people are unaware when their beds have become infested. It is important however to be able to recognize the signs that bedbugs may be present in your home, as they can carry germs and diseases that can infect humans. To help you determine if you may require bedbug treatment, here are a few of the common signs that bedbugs are present in your home.

 

Bites on Your Body

One of the biggest problems that makes the presence of bedbugs hard to detect is that they rarely show themselves. This will make their bite the best sign you will have to go on that you may have bedbugs. Since people do not see the bedbugs however, they often mistake their bite for a rash, a spider bite, a mosquito bite, and even the chicken pox. However, if you know what to look for, it can be easy to distinguish bedbug bites from other bug bites. Bedbug bites cause itchy, swollen welts on the body. These welts usually appear in a zigzag pattern across the body. The presence of numerous bites can be a good indicator that you may have bedbugs.

 

Signs of Bedbugs

Ultimately, since bedbugs are rarely seen by the people whose beds they infect, it is necessary that you know to look out for the more subtle signs that bedbugs are present in your bed. The signs can include:

 

  • A musty odor: While not everyone notices this scent, bedbugs produce a distinctive scent as a way of communicating with one another. If you notice such a scent coming from your mattress, it could be a sign that you have bedbugs.
  • Exoskeletons: Bedbugs have an outer shell that they periodically shed and leave behind. If you find such a remaining on your bed and/or bedding, it is likely that you have bedbugs.
  • Excrement: Black specks on your mattress and/or bedding could be the bedbug’s excrement. Look out for this common sign of bedbugs.

 

Bedbug infestations can be a health hazard, which is why it is important that you know the signs to look out for that indicate that you may have bedbugs in your home. Once you have determined that you may have bedbugs, contact us. We can help provide you with information on eradicating them from your home.


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Preventive Tactics to Keep Your Home Cockroach Free

Posted on Feb 6, 2014


The mere mention of a cockroach infestation afflicts panic in homeowners. Unfortunately, that feeling is warranted due to the health concerns associated with the pest. While the insect goes about its daily routine of rummaging through decomposing matter, it picks up unfriendly bacteria that can transfer to people through the contamination of food. Not only do cockroaches spread diseases, but their shed skin and droppings are linked to increased asthma and allergy attacks. If you suspect your property has become a refuge for these unsightly pests, your best course of action is to hire a professional exterminator. However, a proactive approach to pest management can limit your chances of battling a cockroach invasion. Listed below are 5 preventive measures you should take to lessen the possibility of an infestation.

 

1. Cockroaches can find their way into your home through cracks and small openings. A thorough inspection of your property can alert you to any entrance areas. Weather proofing doors, and sealing any holes or cracks on the inside and outside of your house will help you keep pests out.

 

2. Eliminating areas on the outside of your home where cockroaches can hide is a vital preventive measure. Piles of firewood should not be placed against your home, and outside garbage cans should be covered and kept as far away from your house as possible. Allowing such objects to stay near your residence is practically an invitation for cockroaches to find a way into your property.

 

3. Cockroaches are attracted to moist areas, such as basements and attics. Keeping these areas dry by using a dehumidifier can decrease the possibility of the insects migrating into your home. Your kitchen and bathroom are also at-risk areas. Be sure to fix any leaking pipes, and refrain from leaving puddles or water filled dishes in or near your sinks.

 

4. Scattered crumbs and foods left out uncovered are beacons for these pests. Cleaning your counters and properly storing food in airtight containers goes a long way in averting a cockroach infestation. Using a garbage can that has a lid and throwing its contents away on a daily basis is also an excellent defense against the bugs.

 

5. Before you bring any items into your home that have been stored in a garage or a shed, a complete inspection of the packaging and the item is necessary. If you do not exam such objects, you could unknowingly transport cockroaches into your living space.

 

While protecting your home by following the preventive measures listed above can minimize a cockroach's opportunity to enter your home, completely eliminating the possibility is nearly impossible. If you suspect your home is infested by cockroaches, please contact us today. Our staff of professional exterminators offers Arkansas' Fort Smith region same day services, in addition to a customized solution to your pest problem.


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Roaches, Ants and Spiders: A Look at the Infamous Arkansas Black Widow

Posted on Feb 5, 2014


During the cold Arkansas winters, it’s easy to forget about roaches, ants, spiders. However, just because they aren’t as active doesn’t mean that they can’t be a nuisance. Some creatures, like the black widows found in the Fort Smith area, tend to create problems for some residents year round.

 

Winter is actually the time of year when Arkansas’ black widow population moves indoors. They do so in the hopes of staying warm and safe until spring. Once spring fully arrives, they start to engage in their mating behaviors, which can quickly spell big trouble for Arkansas’  residents. That’s because each female black widow has the ability to create up to 15 egg balls. The balls may contain up to 900 offspring, which typically hatch within a month’s time.

 

Although many of those offspring won’t survive, there will undoubtedly be some that will. They, in turn, will have the capability of injecting their venom into Arkansas’ other residents. That venom can cause everything from cramps and speech defects to difficulties with ambulation. Those residents that do end up being bitten should take immediate steps to ensure that the venom doesn’t spread and seek emergency medical attention.

 

It should also be noted that Arkansas’ adult, black widows are often 7/16 inches long and feature an hour-glass shaped, red marking on their abdomens. They usually build their webs close to the ground or another structure that offers them darkness during the day and an easily accessible escape route. In addition, they often seek out areas that are least apt to be disturbed by humans or pets.

 

Thus, it is not uncommon to find them hiding out in electrical boxes, crawl spaces, attics, basements and garages. Fort Smith residents that notice low-lying webs and other signs of black widow spider activity should take immediate steps to evict the notorious arachnids from their homes. To find out more about effectively getting rid of Arkansas’ roaches, ants and spiders, please Contact our Fort Smith Exterminators at (479) 783-1822.

 

 


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How to Inspect your Hotel Room for Bedbugs

Posted on Jan 24, 2014


Bedbugs can wreak havoc on even the most well laid travel plans. In order to ensure you do not wind up being infested with these creatures, you should do a thorough inspection of your hotel room upon arrival. Perform this check before bringing in any personal belonging; otherwise, you could wind up taking them home with you even if you don’t end up staying there.

 

Peel back the sheets and blankets in order to look for signs of bedbugs themselves. Bedbugs are oval shaped and dark red or brown in color. Use a flashlight to help you see in the creases and folds of your mattress. Look underneath the seams as well, as this is a popular hiding spot that is often overlooked on many inspections.

 

You may not notice the actual bugs, but could nonetheless see signs that they have been there. For example, you may observe small round droppings that somewhat resemble dirt on the top of the mattress. You could also notice what appear to be bloodstains or remnants of these insects’ bodies left behind on the mattress as well. Since bed bugs are very small, you may want to use a magnifying glass to help you see these telltale signs more closely.

 

It’s important to check not only the mattress, but the box springs, headboard and footboard as well. When checking the headboard and footboard, look for droppings in corners and crevices. You should also check any upholstered furniture by flipping over cushions and checking in crevices. The last step in your inspection should be a check around the carpet at the edge of your room, preferably with a flashlight if it is dark in color.

 

Even if you do not find any bed bugs, you should never assume you are 100% safe. You could easily overlook these creatures, even after a very thorough inspection. In order to protect yourself, keep your luggage on a luggage rack to prevent these insects from crawling inside. You should also consider bringing a travel-sized bottle of bed bug spray with you wherever you go. To find out more about how we can help in the fight against bed bugs,Contact us.


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How to Temporarily Live With Bed Bugs Before Utilizing Professional Treatment

Posted on Jan 9, 2014


Nothing is worse for your sleep schedule than going to bed after seeing bed bug bites on your body. A bed bug infestation is problematic and is an issue that can grow exponentially over time if it is not addressed. Although it is wise to eliminate a potential bed bug infestation as soon as possible, this is not always a viable option due to issues such as finances or a tight schedule. Temporarily living with a bed bug infestation is achievable by following some simple tips and strategies.

 

Move to A New Sleeping Location

 

Moving to a new sleeping location is an easy way to get a couple good nights sleep without worry. However, this will only be a short-term solution, as bed bugs are known to migrate once their food supply is eliminated. In the mean time, use some Bed Bug 911 Exterminator spray in the area of your old sleeping location as well as your new sleeping location. It is important to wash all of the laundry, blankets and covers as well as vacuum all carpeting. Bed Bug 911 Exterminator Laundry Treatment is useful for ensuring eradication of bed bugs during the wash cycle. Make sure to use the hottest temperature setting on your dryer as well. Be sure to spray and visually inspect your mattress, box spring and furniture in the room. Do not miss a spot, bedbugs are even known to hide in obscure places such as an electrical outlet or cracks between carpeting and the wall. Steam cleaning is also an important step in the process, as the heat from the water will destroy any eggs which have been laid.

 

Protect Yourself From Fresh Bites

 

Even after extensive cleaning and application of spray, it is still entirely possible to have some bed bugs or bed bug eggs left. For this reason, preventing them from regaining dominance is essential. 

 

Prevent Future Bed Bug Issues

 

Knowing the signs of a bed bug infestation is critical, especially when you plan on traveling and staying in motel or hotel rooms. According to The University of Nebraska-Lincoln, "When checking into a hotel, it is a good idea to immediately inspect rooms for bed bugs. Bed bugs like to live in groups, in cracks and other dark, tight places. These “hot spots” can often be identified because bed bugs leave small brown/black spots and smears (liquid feces) in these hiding places. Fecal spots may also be found on bed linens, pillows and mattresses. Bed bugs live in cracks the width of a credit card and in void areas created by wood framing of the foundation."

Be sure to contact us at Extermco Termite & Pest Control Inc. if you have any questions about eradicating bedbugs from your home.


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Interesting Facts About the Roach

Posted on Dec 26, 2013


We have all probably heard that a cockroach can live through a nuclear disaster, or that they have been around since the dinosaurs. The cockroach is probably one of the best known bugs for inducing a case of the "willies", but not all roaches are created equal. Here we will look at ten interesting facts about them you probably aren't aware of.

 

1. A cockroach can live six weeks without a meal. In hard times it will actually eat things like leather, soap, wallpaper paste and even hair. 


2. A cockroach can hold its breath for 40 minutes, and it can survive that long even under water. It is used to holding its breath often to help regulate loss of water.


3. Cockroaches may wander aimlessly about without them, but they can actually go headless. They breathe through the sides of their bodies, not their mouths. However, after about seven days they will die from thirst.


4. There are over 4000 species. And though we cringe at the thought, only about 30 are considered pests. The rest live in natural outdoor habitats and are considered one of nature's garbage disposals.


5. Roaches have quite an affinity to alcohol, especially beer. It may be the grain, it may be the sugar, or maybe they just enjoy kicking back with a drink after a long day.


6. Cockroaches like affection too. No, not really, but they do like to feel contact on all sides of their bodies. A typical roach you find in a home can squeeze into an area the thickness of a quarter.


7. They bleed white blood. They don't use hemoglobin to carry blood, which is the substance that makes blood appear red.


8. Cockroaches can deal with cold. A cockroach can live in temperatures as low as 32 degrees. Much lower than that and they will die.


9. Roaches drool. Tests have shown roaches can be trained by different scents like vanilla to know they are about to receive a sugary treat. Once they detect the scent with their antennae, they begin to drool, just like Fido at dinner time.


10. Processed cockroaches have been used for centuries as cures for maladies. Anyone for roach tea for dropsy? How about fried roaches and garlic for indigestion? Or the next time you get a nasty stingray sting, try mashing up some roaches for a poultice.


As interesting as they may be, no one wants roaches in the home. To find out how to rid yourself of these pests, feel free to contact us.


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7 Facts You DID NOT Know About Termites

Posted on Dec 16, 2013


While an infestation of termites in your home is no laughing matter. These unwanted pests are actually fascinating insects. Nicknamed the “social cockroach,” termites were once believed to have a distant relation to cockroaches, but after extensive research was performed on the two bugs, it was discovered they were far more connected than previously believed. In fact, after Paul Eggleton, an entomologist with the Natural History Museum and his colleagues completed a comprehensive study of the two insects' DNA, they learned termites evolved from a cockroach's ancestor. Though, these troublesome bugs cause homeowners a large amount of grief every year, it is difficult to deny that their habits and characteristics make them an interesting subject to explore. Listed below are 7 facts that you may not have known about these wood consuming insects. 

 

1. There is no such thing as a sleeping termite. Termites work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week without taking a break. While you may feel a large amount of disdain for these tiny pests, you have to admit they are hard and determined workers.

 

2. Sunlight and termites do not mix. The insect is quite sensitive to the shining sun and in some cases termites exposed to the bright light can die.

 

3. The soldiers and workers in a termite colony are blind. Their lack of eyesight is largely due to the environment they live in. The dark, dank nests they inhabit do not leave the bug with much reason to develop the ability to see.

 

4. When their nest is infiltrated, termites have their own version of an alarm system. Soldiers create vibrations by hitting their heads against the walls of the nest. The vibrations warn the rest the colony of the presence of an intruder.

 

5. Though, termites are considered destructive and relentless by homeowners, their job in nature is extremely important. A termite's ability to break down plant fiber and dead trees helps maintain the health of a forest.

 

6. The number of termites living on earth exceeds the number of humans, which is likely due to the fact that the termite queen is capable of laying 40,000 eggs a day.

 

7. Out of the 50 state in the USA, Alaska is the only state where subterranean termites do not reside.

No matter how interesting termites are, finding them in your home is distressing. If you suspect a termite infestation, please contact us today, and our staff of professional exterminators will rid your home of these infuriating insects.


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Myth vs. Fact: The Truth About Bedbugs

Posted on Nov 18, 2013


The increase in bedbug infestations has caused the myths surrounding the insect to spiral out of control. Knowing what is true and what isn't can help you spot an outbreak before it truly gets out of control. Debunking the following 5 myths will provide you with a better understanding of bedbugs and what to expect if your home becomes infested.

 

Myth

Bedbugs only live in mattresses.

 

Fact

The name bedbugs can mislead people to believe that these tiny pests only inhabit beds, but that is far from the truth. While beds provide an idea feeding ground for the pest, they can be found in a variety of areas in your home. Other common places bedbugs tend to live are couches, behind baseboards, on curtains, and even in dressers and nightstands.

 

Myth

Bedbugs only feed at night.

 

Fact

Keeping your bedroom light on when you sleep will not keep the bedbugs away. While bedbugs are nocturnal insects, they do not shy away from eating during the day. No matter what time of the day it is if a bedbug is hungry and a food source is present they will not hesitate to feed.

 

Myth

Bedbugs are only found in houses, apartment building, and hotels.

 

Fact

Unfortunately, bedbugs take up residence in many other locations. According to a recent report from Wisconsin’s CBS 58 news, bedbugs were discovered at an AMC movie theater this October. There have also been accounts of bedbugs making themselves known on airplanes, in libraries, and at schools.

 

Myth

Bedbugs only live in filthy and cluttered areas.

Fact

Unlike other pests, bedbugs do not live off of waste. Their food of choice is blood, and that's why they do not discriminate when choosing a place to live. Staying near their food source is the insects main concern, so whether the environment is organized and clean or disheveled and dirty does not make a difference to the bug.

 

Myth

Bedbugs transmit diseases to humans.

Fact

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, bedbugs are not a medical health hazard. The bites that are acquired from the pest are more of a nuisance than a danger. Though, it is imperative that you are careful when scratching the bitten area because if you do not take precautions, you may become victim to a secondary infection.

 

If you suspect bedbugs have taken up residence in your home, pleasecontact us today. Our staff of professional exterminators offers Arkansas' Fort Smith region same day service and provides a customized solution to your pest problem.


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Know your bugs: Argentine Ants

Posted on Nov 18, 2013


When it comes to an infestation of ants in your home, the approach you take to fighting the invasion will depend in part on the species of ant; while ants share commonalities across species, different species will have their own nesting site preferences, breed and multiply differently, and prefer some kinds of food sources over others. 

One common and aggressive home-invading bug is the Argentine ant.  What are some of the characteristics of this species?

 

  • Different colonies of Argentine ants don't fight with each other; they might band together to destroy other ant species, but not each other.  On different continents, the individual colonies of ants can make up a "supercolonies" (one example is the California Large Colony extending hundreds of miles along the Pacific coast).  In the US, these ants are prevalent mostly in the South and in California.
  • Getting rid of a queen ant doesn't destroy the colony, as a colony has multiple queens.
  • They get into buildings through even the most miniscule openings. 
  • They're drawn to moisture and in particular to sweet foods.  Another motive for setting up camp in your home is to escape from unfavorable weather conditions, such as heat spells and torrential rains.
  • They nest in a wide range of places both indoors and outdoors, including flowerbeds, damp, mulchy soil, rotten wood, potted plants, and in moist, protected places within your walls, near pipes and sinks for instance.

 

Indiscriminately spraying pesticide probably won't be effective; even if you kill off individual ants, remember that they form large colonies with multiple queens.  There's also some evidence suggesting that the use of pesticides could increase the rate of egg-laying by the queens.  Use of slow-acting poisonous bait could be more effective, as the ever-foraging ants would bring it back to the nesting site; you need to be careful about where you place the bait, and you'd also need to be patient, as it can take some time for significant portions of them to die off.

 

You also need to determine the likeliest points of entry into your home, and as much as possible seal up cracks, keep food sealed up, and make sure there aren't any drippy pipes or other plumbing problems that would create the moist spaces these ants (and other pests) enjoy.

 

Although Argentine ant infestations aren't 100% preventable, and can be difficult to control,contact usfor further solutions on how to deal with these determined home invaders.


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Steps to Good Commercial Kitchen Pest Contro

Posted on Nov 4, 2013


Restaurants can be subject to infestations from rodents, flies, roaches and other pests. Preventing these infestations is much easier than exterminating them is, which is why good commercial kitchen pest control should be a part of any business operation.

 

Make sure areas where you store and prepare food are kept as clean and orderly as possible. Avoid allowing clutter and debris to accumulate, as this makes it more likely that mice will decide to nest there. Empty trash cans often, and rinse them out with soap and water at least once a week so that insects will not be attracted to the residue that can accumulate inside of them.

 

Sinks, counters, and stoves should all be kept clean and free of grease in order to discourage roaches from crawling on them. Sweep underneath stoves and grills several times each day to remove food particles that have fallen into these spaces.

 

Keeping your kitchen in good repair will also go a long way toward preventing pests. Repair any holes in exterior walls or baseboards so that rodents will not have easy access to your space. Caulk around windows and repair holes in screens so that flies and other insects will not be able to enter as easily as they would have otherwise.

 

Store food off the floor by using pallets or shelving designed especially for this purpose. When rotating stock, look for droppings, chewed paper, or the remains of insects, as these all indicate you have a problem that needs to be addressed. You could also set out glue traps in order to detect insect or vermin so that an exterminator can be called if needed.

 

Restaurant pest control must be handled delicately, since spraying chemicals in areas where food is present can be harmful if not done correctly. Rather than risk exposing your customers to toxins, contact us for all your pest control needs instead.


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An Exterminator Can Solve Your Flea Problem

Posted on Oct 21, 2013


Fleas often invade your home by catching a ride on your dog or cat. While your animal is happily running around a park or taking a nap in your backyard, they can pick up the pest and transfer them into your house. Ridding your home of these pesky creatures means removing them from your pet and completely eradicating them from your living space. Listed below are tips on how to identify and eliminate fleas from your pet and home. While doing it yourself may seem simple, it is always a good idea to contact an exterminator for additional guidance.

 

How to discover and eliminate fleas from your pet


Your first clue and probably most obvious evidence that fleas have entered your home is an itchy pet. If you notice your dog or cat continuously scratching, immediately check your animal for the insect. While fleas are small, they are still visible to the human eye. If you see tiny, dark dots on your pet, there is a good chance you are dealing with fleas. Once you've spotted the bug, promptly purchase a flea comb from your local pet store. It is wise to use one of these specialized combs because the teeth are extremely close to together, which means it is able to pull the fleas off single strains of hair. Place a soapy cup of water next to you as you comb through your animals fur. After each stroke, submerge the comb in the water to drown the fleas you have removed.

 

Once you are done combing your pet, your next step is getting them into your bathtub. While most animals don't like being immersed up to their neck in soapy water, doing so is the only way to guarantee the fleas are drowned. It is crucial you keep your pet in this position for a few minutes; otherwise you may not completely rid them of the pest. Performing another comb through after your animal's bath is highly recommended.

 

How to find fleas in your home


If you've discovered your dog or cat has fleas, it is vital to check your home for further infestation. Inspect your carpeting and especially examine areas where your pet frequently sleeps. Putting a pair of white socks on and walking throughout your house is a good way to detect flea activity. Because fleas consume blood, they are attracted to the warmth your body emits, so as you make your way through your home they may jump on your feet. Wearing white socks will allow you to spot them.

 

Unfortunately, flea bites are not limited to animals, humans can also be victims of the insect's blood consuming needs. Itching and small red pumps with a tiny puncture mark in the middle are symptoms of flea bites. While most fleas are not dangerous, they do have the potential to carry diseases because of their consumption of blood. Washing bedding and vacuuming carpeting are good first steps in eliminating the pest from your home, but if you do not get rid of all the fleas or the eggs they have laid, you will more than likely have another infestation occur.

 

If you are looking to rid your home of fleas, please contact us. Our team of professional exterminators offers Arkansas' Fort Smith region same day services, along with a customized solution to your pest problem.


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Fall Pest Control: Keeping Pests Out of Your Home in Cooler Weather

Posted on Oct 15, 2013


People associate summer and its warmer weather with a profusion of pests, as we see insects and other small creatures all over the place during hotter weather.  But the fall season poses a danger too, as the weather cools in October and November.  Pests will be seeking out a warm refuge for the cooler months, and that may wind up being your home.

 

Whether it's rodents looking for a cozier spot or invading ants hoping to set up camp beneath your floorboards, your home offers food, water, shelter, and warmth,and protected places where pests can live and reproduce no matter how cold it gets outside.  As such,pest control is necessary year round, including times of more transitional weather when pests may be hunting for new homes.

 

 

What are some of the things you should do about potential pests in the fall season?

 

  • Take the opportunity to inspect your home for cracks and other easy entryways for pests.
  • If you have outdoor furniture, gear, and other items that you'd like to bring indoors now that summer has ended, inspect them all for pests.  Do the same for anything you've brought back with you from recent travels, such as camping or hiking trips.  Check any clothing or bedding for fleas.
  • Keep your yard tidy throughout the fall.  Large accumulations of moist, decomposing leaves, especially right around your house, could be very attractive to pests.
  • Regularly check your gutters and drains for blockages, including from falling leaves and debris.  If there's excess moisture building up around your house, pests are more likely to make their way there.
  • Be mindful of what food you leave out around the house or what you use for decoration. Some people, for instance, like to decorate their porch with pumpkins, squashes, and seasonal flowers and plants; check if this isn't attracting flies, roaches, spiders and other pests.

 

Even if you don't have a pest problem, contact professionals who can give your home a thorough inspection this fall, addressing any vulnerabilities and helping you set up preventative measures to keep pests from turning your home into a cozy winter retreat.  And if you do already see signs of pests, get the problem taken care of ASAP so that the existing problem doesn't develop into something even worse.


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The Right Exterminator Can Save Your Home From an Invasion of Carpenter An

Posted on Oct 2, 2013


Carpenter ants invading the walls of your home can lead to serious issues with your property's structural well-being. The destruction carpenter ants cause your home is not due to them feeding on the wood, instead the damage is from them borrowing their way through the wood to create nests.  Because of the fast rate carpenter ants reproduce and the sheer number of ants a nest can house, ridding your home of these bugs quickly, is key to avoiding major issues. Knowing what to look for and where to look is essential in determining whether your property has been infested.

 

Where to look


  • Carpenter ants will most likely enter your home through damp or decaying wood. From there they create numerous tunnels that lead to their parent colony and to their satellite colonies.
  • Likely places for carpenter ants to invade are wood areas surrounding leaking plumbing fixtures, damaged wood around crawl spaces, and window frames underneath leaking gutters.
  • Fire wood and tree stumps that are located close to your home are also sources that may lead to carpenter ants entering your house.

 

Signs to look for


  • You are likely to spot carpenter ants searching your kitchen for food at night. If you do see ants wandering your home, you may be able to tell if they are carpenter ants by their appearance. If the ant is larger than normal and is either a dull black, yellowish-red, or a black and reddish-orange, you may have an invasion on your hands.
  • Finding small piles of sawdust near walls, windows, and doors inside your home is a significant indication that ants are present.
  • If you suspect an infestation, tapping on walls and doors can help you find evidence of a nest. Damaged wood will often sound hollow due to the tunnels the ants have created.

 

How to get rid of carpenter ants


  • Unfortunately, exterminating carpenter ants from your home is a difficult task and if you fail to rid your property of the pest completely, your house will continue to sustain structural damage.
  • Spraying the ants you find roaming your home with over the counter insecticides, may seem like an easy cure, but due to the large number of ants a single nest can have, this method will not eradicate the bugs entirely.
  • Hiring an exterminator to ensure the elimination of all ants takes place is vital in saving your home from receiving extensive structural corruption. A timely response to the appearance of carpenter ants can save you thousands of dollars on repairs.
  • Once the extermination is complete, repairing damaged wood will stop a new invasion from occurring. If you have any leaking pipes or broken gutters, be sure to repair the problem before damp wood becomes a breeding nest for carpenter ants again.

 

If carpenter ants have invaded your home, please contact usOur staff of professional exterminators offers Arkansas' Fort Smith region same day services and provides  a customized solution to your pest problem.


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Arkansas Pest Control Pro Discusses Blacklegged Ticks

Posted on Sep 13, 2013


Did you know that there are more than 800 different species of ticks in the world? As Arkansas pest control pros, we can say that with certainty. The species of ticks commonly found in our great state are the American dog, lone star, blacklegged, Gulf Coast and brown dog. Today, we thought that we’d share some facts about the Blacklegged tick.

They are extremely tiny, more so than other species of ticks. “How tiny?”, you might ask. Well, depending on where they are in their life cycle, they could resemble a human freckle or a poppy seed. That’s why they are often able to crawl onto your body and feed unnoticed.

 

Speaking of feeding, they tend to only do it three times in their life cycle. However, each feeding typically lasts a minimum of three days. If they do decide to make a meal of you, there is a chance that you could develop anaplasmosis. It’s a disease that can be quite challenging to treat.

 

Their feeding habits and disease carrying capabilities are not they only things worth mentioning about Arkansas’ blacklegged ticks. They are also very prolific at creating offspring. For example, it is not unusual for each sesame seed size female to produce 3,000 babies in her lifetime.

 

As such, it should come as no surprise that within the last few years we’ve seen an uptick in the number of blacklegged tick bites. We should also mention that in Arkansas, the pesky acari tend to be most active when temperatures are greater than 35 degrees Fahrenheit. That means that you typically need to really be on the lookout for them from late spring until at least early fall.

 

With that said, if you feel that you have a blacklegged tick infestation, pleasecontact us. We here at Extermco Pest Control have experience dealing with all of Arkansas’ known tick populations. In addition, we can help you get rid of other pests too. To learn more or schedule a visit with our pest control pros, call us t at 479-783-1822.


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Roaches, Ants, Spiders; The Threats that they Creat

Posted on Sep 5, 2013


Roaches, ants and spiders are just a few of the primary pests that can make life difficult in a house, particularly during the spring and fall seasons. Pest control is a vital tool to fight against such creatures during those times when they infiltrate the home in abundance. With so many potential assailants infiltrating your home, the importance of extermination becomes increasingly important. Each one of these creatures can pose a separate problem to a home, but all of them have the same solution; pest control service.

 

For instance, roaches are drawn to sticky, sweet and grain-based products. When they find these products, they will set up shop, nibbling on those products over time, using their nutrients to nest and reproduce. When they eat products, they leave their tainted fecal matter and saliva behind. As a result, most food that they even touch becomes contaminated and unsuitable for human consumption.

 

 Ants are just as bad. Depending on the type of ant that your home is infested with, they might just find your food and contaminate it the same way that roaches do, or they could actually bite or sting you. They can also carry disease and taint your food with such diseases. What is more, if you accidentally consume a large amount of them, then they can start to cause serious health problems. The worst part about them is that they are so difficult to get rid of on your own.

 

Spiders are one of the most feared pests out there. Though they do not contaminate food in the same ways that roaches and ants can, they can often set up shop in your home, sometimes biting you or reproducing and creating more pests to deal with. No to mention the fact that they are frightening creatures that can move quickly and hide everywhere.

 

These and many other pests are all-too-common in homes, even if you have not seen them. They are small, so you seeing them could just be an indication that their infestation has become too great already. The best course of action is to handle them when they are less of a crisis so that you can prevent a larger exodus of insects and creatures into your home. 

 


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Fort Smith Exterminator’s Fun Facts about Striped Bark Scorpion

Posted on Aug 30, 2013


Arkansas’ Fort Smith area and the surrounding communities are home to a vast array of fauna. One of the more fascinating arthropods is the striped bark scorpion. Our exterminators frequently encounter them during the normal course of their Fort Smith pest control work. As such, we thought that it might be fun to share the following facts with you:

 

Fort Smith Exterminator's Fun Fact #1 – Glowing Potential


Did you know that striped bark scorpions, in certain circumstances, have the ability to glow bright green? According to Henderson State University’s data, the creatures will glow when placed under black light bulbs. However, given that striped bark scorpions also have propensity to deliver a wicked bite, we wouldn’t recommend that you try experimenting with one at home.

 


Fort Smith Exterminator's Fun Fact #2 – Oh Mama!


Glowing under black lights is not the only remarkable thing that Arkansas’ scorpions can do either. They are also capable of giving birth to 50 babies at one time! Although on average, most tend to give birth to 31 children with each pregnancy. This leads us to our next fun fact.

 

Fort Smith Exterminator's Fun Fact #3 – A Pain in the Back?


Once born, the babies get placed onto their mothers’ backs. They remain there for up to 15 days. Can you just imagine what it would be like to carry 30 to 50 people on your back for 15 days? In our opinion, that’s a real Herculean feat. Especially when you consider how small adult striped bark scorpions are. In most instances, they only grow to be 60 mm long. Talk about being tiny and tough!

 

Fort Smith Exterminator's Fun Fact #4 – One is the Loneliest Number


Another thing that you may find fascinating is that that out of the 2,000+ species of scorpions in the world, only members of the striped bark family have decided to call Arkansas home. The other species tend to live in other areas like Brazil and the Himalayas.

 

Fort Smith Exterminator's Fun Fact #5 – Dieting Dynamos


Finally, we’d like to share with you one last, fascinating fact about striped bark scorpions. When need be, they can survive an entire year on only one small meal. Now that gives a whole new meaning to dieting doesn’t it?

To discover more facts about Arkansas’ scorpion population, including how to remove them from your property, contact us. Our exterminators may be reached by phone or through the Extermco Termite & Pest Control website. Our phone number is (479) 783-1822.


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Fort Smith Exterminator Discusses Intriguing Facts about Fire Ants

Posted on Aug 26, 2013


Imported fire ants are just one of the many critters that we here at Extermco Termite & Pest Control encounter in our travels. The aggressive, South American natives first surfaced in our state during the late 1950s. The initial outbreak took place in El Dorado, which is now considered to be a fire ant quarantined county. Afterward, the creatures continued to spread, eventually becoming problematic for much of Arkansas’ human and animal populations alike. With that said, here’s a look at a few imported fire ant facts that you may just find intriguing:


Engineering Feats


Despite their 1/8 to ¼-inch size, imported fire ants are prolific engineers. In some areas, their homes can reach depths of 10-feet and often touch the water table. That’s how they are able to access water in drought prone areas. In addition, it is not uncommon for the exposed areas to reach heights and widths of 15-inches. Given that each mound may be home to more than 5,000 ants at a time, it’s no wonder that they reach that size.

Curiously enough, when you look at their homes, it appears that there is no entrance or exit. However, don’t let that fool you. The small openings are actually located at the end of very long, underground tunnels that radiate out from the mound’s center. Over the years, some of those entrance/exit tunnels have been known to exceed 200 feet in length.  

 

Travel Expertise


In addition to being prolific engineers, imported fire ants are also quite adept at traveling. In order to get from one place to another, they have been known to hitch rides on various items, including the wind and living rafts. Take the winged queens for example. They are capable of flying distances in excess of 10 miles. Those that manage to form their own living rafts can feasibly reach distances much farther than that.

 

To learn more about Arkansas’ imported fire ant population and how to control them,contact us at (479) 783-1822. Our experienced Fort Smith pest control pros are well versed in fire ant control. We can also help eliminate other insects from your property, including carpenter ants, scorpions, spiders and roaches.


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Safe and Humane Ways to Get Rid of Pests

Posted on Aug 19, 2013


No area is safe from pests and insects.  Pests will always find a way to enter your space.  Harsh methods affect the environment and our health.  Mouse traps make cleanup a messy experience.  Anyone looking to avoid that doesn’t have to look far.  There are safe ways to eliminate the threat that entered your home or apartment. 

 

Seal all cracks and holes.  Pests have a way of finding holes and cracks in your home or apartment that you don't know about.  Some pests like roaches, mice and rats will squeeze their bodies through a crack or hole by flattening their bodies.  If you see a pest start looking for possible cracks in walls and floors.  If it's bigger than 1/4 diameter stuff the hole or crack with wool or plaster.  Seal it up with tape or caulk.  Screens on windows and doors should be sealed tight.  Clean dishes, countertops, tables, tablecloths and placemats. 

 

Don't leave food out for pests and insects.  All food must be in plastic containers sealed shut.  Plastic bags can be chewed or sliced through.  Clean and sweep the home to collect food that dropped on the floor especially the kitchen.  Take out the garbage before bed because it may contain food. 

 

There are environmentally responsible traps available in stores.  These traps don't hurt the pest or insect; it traps them using bait.  The pest or insect is releated outside.  Repellants are used to steer insects and pests away from your home.  Homemade mixtures and solutions for eliminating pests are all over the internet. 

 

Calling an exterminator is a must-have option.  It doesn't matter what the situation is, we can handle it.  Contact us and we will take care of the rest.  There's a reason why pests earn their name.  They are bothersome animals that want what you have.  Don't let them win.


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How To Know if You Have A Problem With Bedbugs

Posted on Aug 12, 2013


Determining if you have a problem with bedbugs can often be challenging, especially since the signs start out small. Many people do not have an allergy to the bites, which can delay finding out about the problem until it approaches a critical level. By learning how to detect if you have a bed bug problem, eliminating the problem before it becomes a true hassle should be achievable.

 

There are Multiple Signs of A Bedbug Infestation Besides Bites

 

Although there is a tendency to associate a bedbug infestation with an unkept home, a bedbug infestation can occur in any home. However, keeping your home tidy may make it easier to detect and treat a problem. Look for these factors

 

  • Blood stains on your sheets or pillowcases
  • Dark or rusty spots of bedbug excrement on sheets and mattresses, bed linens, and walls
  • Bedbug fecal spots, egg shells, or shed skins in areas where bedbugs hide

 

If you suspect that you are being bitten, set an alarm clock and experiment with various times of your sleep cycle. Upon waking quickly turn on a light and inspect the bed. Although bed bugs are known for being able to scatter quickly, you can typically catch them in the act if you are quick. Another option is to set traps around the room and on your bed posts. Fly traps work excellent for this purpose.

 

For those who are allergic to bed bug bites, it is typically straightforward to identify that a problem is occurring. The bites tend to appear in a straight line and biting cycles reoccur once or twice a week. One easy way to find out the location of an infestation is to switch the room that you sleep in. Although bed bugs do migrate after a period of time, going a week without bites in a different location will allow you to pinpoint the source of the infestation.

 

Although these are some DIY ways to see if you have bedbugs, please remember most pest control companies that treat bedbugs, do free inspection.  We offer same day service. If you can for an inspection we'll come out that day and tell you if you do indeed have bedbugs. Give Extermco a call @ 479-783-1822


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Keep Food Clean with Commercial Kitchen Pest Control

Posted on Jul 29, 2013


Commercial kitchens need to be kept extremely clean in order to maintain health codes and protect the safety of customers.  However, one of the challenges of any kitchen is that warm temperatures and an abundance of food attract a variety of pests.  Creatures such as roaches, ants, and rats will tend to congregate where food and water are available.   However, the presence of such pests can pose a significant risk of contaminating food and damaging the reputation of a commercial kitchen.  Steps need to be taken to ensure that commercial kitchens stay clean and pest-free.

 

If your commercial kitchen does not suffer from a pest problem, you can take steps to prevent future problems by managing food and drainage.  Make sure to clean up crumbs on counters and floors, and keep all food, including food waste, sealed.  Keep all your appliances clean in order to avoid attracting pests.  In addition, make sure that you do not leave standing water in the kitchen, since this can be an ideal breeding ground for pests.  Take care to make sure that your sinks are draining properly, and that you aren’t leaving buckets or other containers full for more than a day.

 

If you have a pest problem and are looking for a solution, make sure to contact an exterminator right away.  At Extermco, we offer commercial kitchen pest controlcommercial kitchen pest control services that are designed to keep kitchens clean and free of pests.  Eliminating pests is a necessary step in maintaining a clean and healthy kitchen, and hiring a professional exterminator is an excellent way to make sure that pests are truly eradicated.

Please visit our website for more information about our pest control services.  If you would like to set up an appointment, please feel free to contact us.  We look forward to hearing from you!


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Four Tips for Avoiding Bedbug Infestations

Posted on Jul 18, 2013


Bedbugs were on the decline in the United States in the mid-20th century, but in recent years infestations have been back on the rise. Bedbugs can live under mattresses, in cracks and crevices, and in your carpet for years without eating. Plus, they travel easily on clothes, luggage, and bedding. While we're happy to help eliminate an infestation, here are a few tips for making sure you don't get one in the first place! 

 

Travel Carefully - Many travelers bring home unexpected house guests after staying in hotels. Decrease your chances of packing bedbugs by leaving your suitcase on the luggage rack in your room, instead of on the floor. Heat can kill any bugs that did manage to infiltrate your suitcase, so wash and dry all of your clothes as soon as you return home from your trip.

 

Don't Buy Used - Bedbugs can travel on second hand clothes, used bedding, and items that you've picked up curb side. Take caution when bringing used items into your home, and inspect them as best you can. Remember to immediately wash and dry anything you can fit in the machine! 

 

Cover Your Mattress - Invest in a bedbug-proof cover to protect your mattress and box springs. Bedbugs love to snuggle up with you in bed, and can be difficult to get out. Mattress covers protect your mattress and make it more difficult for bedbugs to find a place to thrive. Plus, since they are restricted to the outside of the mattress, you'll be able to see them easily with a visual inspection. 

 

Keep Your Home Clean and Clutter Free - Remove any clutter where bedbugs may be able to hide, and run your vacuum cleaner often. You're less likely to develop an infestation if you don't have a comfy place for bedbugs. Remember to visually inspect around your mattress, pillows, couches, and carpet seams. Early detection can mean the difference between one or two bugs and an infestation. 

 

Working to keep bedbugs out of your home can seriously decrease your risk of an infestation. If you do find yourself sharing your home with bedbugs though, contact us and we'll help get your home back to normal.


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Proofing your basement against pest infestations

Posted on Jul 13, 2013


Pests can get into your home in many ways and multiply in any number of spaces.  Basements are particularly vulnerable to infestations.  They're dark and subterranean.  They're the site of hidden nooks, crannies, and cracks leading to the outdoors.  People often neglect to regularly inspect their basements; boxes, furniture or equipment in storage may sit there for months or years, undisturbed.

 

Pest control and prevention depends in part on vigilance and basic home maintenance, including the following tips for proofing your basement against pests:

 

  • Don't store firewood, lumber, or other wood construction materials in your basement.  If you place them outside, don't stack them up right next to your house, as this could be an open invitation to termites and other pests.
  • Be careful about what kinds of food you store in your basement. If it's something like canned or jarred food, then it may be acceptable.  However, foods that are perishable or containers that have been opened should be kept out of the basement.
  • Reduce the clutter in your basement as much as possible. Periodically move around the boxes or other things you have in storage to check for signs of pest infestation and any other problems, such as water leaks.  Items in storage but have been standing around for a long time can provide a decent shelter for all kinds of pests.
  • Keep your basement dry. Many bugs, including roaches and termites, love dark, moist places.  If there's dampness on the walls, ceiling, or floor investigate the source and confirm that there aren't any plumbing problems.  You can also use dehumidifiers to reduce general moisture.
  • Inspect the outside of your home to make sure that rain runoff isn't coming in.  Your home should have adequate gutters and drains.
  • Look around for any cracks that would need to be sealed up.
  • Keep the basement clean.  A cleaner environment, with fewer crumbs and other particles, will be less attractive to pests.

 

If you do see signs of pests when inspecting your basement,contact us.  Getting professional assistance to tackle your pest problems will help you resolve the problem quickly and reduce the chances of future infestations.


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Is Your Home Inviting to Ants, Roaches and Spiders?

Posted on Jul 5, 2013


Nobody wants to deal with the infestation of pests such as roaches, ants, spiders and other creatures.  The presence of pests in the home is uncomfortable, and creates an unpleasant atmosphere for family and friends.  What can you do to prevent pest infestation before it takes hold?

 

Monitor Your Home’s Heat and Humidity


Pests are attracted to environments that offer warm temperatures and high humidity.  They will tend to congregate in moist areas, such as kitchens and bathrooms.  If possible, try to manage the heat and humidity levels in your home so that pests won’t be tempted to enter and stay.  Typically, lower heat and humidity will be less inviting to pests.

 

Keep Food Sealed


One of the main things that attracts pests to a home is the presence of easily accessible food.  Make sure to keep your food and garbage sealed, so that pests won’t be able to feast inside your house.  In addition to keeping all food sealed, make sure to clean up crumbs and spills right away in order to prevent attracting pests such as ants.

 

Prevent Pests from Entering


The more entries that are available to pests, the more likely they will be to find a way into your home.  Make sure to seal off cracks under doors, in windows, or in siding.  Do you leave your windows open often?  Make sure to use screens, and repair any tears that have occurred.  If pests can’t enter your home, they will have a harder time infesting it.

 

If you have a pest infestation problem, the best way to take care of it is by contacting a professional exterminator.  At Extermco, we provide a variety of residential and commercial pest control services.  Please visit our website to learn more about pest management, or contact us to set up an appointment.


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Roaches, Ants, Spiders, Oh My! Identifying Insect Types and Attractions During the Summer

Posted on Jun 22, 2013


When roaches, ants, and spiders enter a home, there might be a good segment of the population who are going to either panic or become frustrated. While the aforementioned insects can enter your home at any time of the year, summer is a time when you don't want to see ants in your kitchen, a roach in your bed or a spider just about anywhere else. And with so many different types of these insects around, plus items that attract them, how do you know what to look out for during the summer months?

 

Types of Spiders and What Attracts Them


While you can easily remove one spider from your home by simply placing it in a jar and taking it outside, what happens when you get multiple spiders in your home? You should identify what type of spider it is in the event that it could be one that bites and does harm to someone in your family. In most cases, only the black widow spider would do that. These also bite and should require an exterminator if you see more of them.

Of course, garden spiders are harmless and will be seen the most sitting on webs in corners of rooms. Even if they don't bite, you may not care to see them if they crawl into bed with you.

For the most part, the most dangerous spiders generally exist outside around woodpiles. Regardless, they could still reside in a more isolated part of your indoor space.

 

Types of Ants and What Attracts Them


Hundreds of ant types exist that it's sometimes impossible for identification based on their similar appearance. The Pharoah ant has become a big problem in the United States based on their persistence and inability to be controlled without a professional exterminator. As well, the carpenter ant is one of the most destructive to your home at a level termites are. We all know ants are attracted to any type of food, particularly sugar. They also search out water during the summer, so be aware of any standing water in your kitchen or other parts of your home.

 

What Attracts Roaches?


If a roach is a roach is a roach, what attracts these insects that arguably create more panic than any other insect? Unfortunately, any type of food attracts roaches, as well as water. They also easily hide in crevices and come out at night where they can spread disease.

 

As with ants, don't leave standing water around during the night. The same applies to food, particularly sweet or fatty foods.

 

Employing all the above advice won't necessarily get rid of these common insects during the summer. Here at Extermco Termite and Pest Control, we know how to rid you of roaches, ants and spiders so you can enjoy the summer months without pests entering your home. Contact us today, or call us at 479-783-1822 for 24-hour emergency response.


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Four Signs you have Termites

Posted on Jun 18, 2013


According to the National Pest Management Association, termites cause about $5 billion in damage in the United States.  Here’s a few tips to help you identify if your home is infested. 

 

Tunnels:  Termites travel across exposed wood through pencil sized tunnels. Tunnels are a sure sign that you either have termites, or have had termites in the past. You can try breaking a piece of the tunnel off, and checking to see if it gets rebuilt. This will help you identify if the tunnel is active. 

 

SwarmingTermites establish new colonies during the spring. If you have an infestation, some of your termites will leave to start anew somewhere else during this time. Look out for swarms of termites, or a pile of those that died while trying to swarm. 

 

Hollow Areas:  The exterior wood in your home may look fine, but there could be all kinds of damage on the inside. Take a screwdriver and tap or poke on suspected areas. Hollow wood will sound differently when you tap on it, and extremely weak wood may break when you poke it. These are signs that the wood is being eaten from the inside by termites. 

 

Visible TermitesTermites like moisture and wood. Don’t store any wood piles against or close to your home. If you do have wood piles or mulch near your home, pull them back and check for visible bugs. 

If you find any evidence of termite damage, or if you’re just not sure,contact us for a free termite inspection.


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Is excess moisture making your home friendly to bugs?

Posted on Jun 12, 2013


Each type of bug has its own habits and preferences, but one trait common to a range of bugs is their attraction to water.  Your home could be generally clean and well-maintained, with food kept sealed and clutter reduced to a minimum.  However, if you have excess moisture in your home, your risk of infestation from a number of pests, including roaches and termites, will still be high.

 

How can you rid your home of excess moisture?

 

Fix plumbing problems.  Leaking pipes and taps are a major attraction to bugs.  Moisture accumulation in your walls and in the foundation of your house, and pools of standing water in and your home need to be dealt with.

 

Take care of A/C water leaks.  Especially in warmer weather when you're using your A/C regularly, make sure the units aren't leaking water.

 

Get rid of moisture quickly.  A glass of water you've forgotten to finish or a pet's water dish that's been sitting out for too long can attract bugs.  Keep the surfaces of your home free of excess moisture, including your bathroom floor.  Clean up immediately after spills and don't leave water standing in your kitchen sink.

 

Maintain your yard wisely.  Make sure your sprinklers aren't spraying a lot of water at the foundation of your home; similarly, your garden hose shouldn't be leaking large puddles near your house.  When you're gardening, don't place plants right up against your house; preserve some distance, at least a few feet.  To help channel water, including rain, away from your house, install drains and gutters and make sure they're clean and free of blockages.  Protecting the foundation of your home from excess moisture will help prevent termite infestation, along with making your home less attractive to other pests as well.

 

Although these measures won't give you a 100% guarantee that you'll be free of bugs, they'll reduce the chances of an infestation.  Contact us if you require assistance dealing with bugs in your home or would like additional advice on preventative measures.


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Why Hire a Commercial Kitchen Pest Control Service

Posted on May 20, 2013


Commercial kitchens are set up to prepare food for purchase and as such are subject to government regulation and inspection.  However, whenever a sizeable amount of food is present, the facility has the potential to attract and harbor pests.  These pests may include insects and rodents.

 

The most prevalent insect problem in US commercial kitchensis the German cockroach.  This is a small cockroach with 2 distinct longitudinal stripes behind its head. The German cockroach requires regular moisture and hides in dark places near food.  They are able squeeze into small cracks and crevices.  Cockroaches may consume food or even books.  On the other hand they can live for weeks without eating.

 

Their habits, along with their ability to detect vibration, sound and light, make it a challenge to locate and eliminate them.

 

The fly is another pest commonly found in the commercial kitchen.  Flies are attracted to food, garbage and moisture. 

 

These insects, besides being repulsive, may potentially carry disease.  The cockroaches collect bacteria on their legs and bodies.  Flies also carry bacteria on their bodies and can spread Salmonella and E. coli.  The skin shedding of roaches has been associated with allergic reactions and asthma.

 

Another threat to the commercial kitchen is the rodent.  Rodents also carry disease organisms such as salmonella and their movements will disperse the germs on food prep areas, utensils and appliances.

 

Hiring a commercial kitchen pest control company to address the problem along with an ongoing effort to clean up food and the areas where the roaches habituate will go a long way towards elimination.  Cockroaches are highly prolific so vigilance is extremely important.  Even with attention to cleanliness the cockroach remains a threat because of its ability to escape detection with hiding.  With his expertise, tools and controls, including baits, an exterminator is able to locate and directly treat the roach’s living space.

 

The exterminator will use his skills to address any other insect problems such as flies and effectively eliminate existing rodent problems along with preventing reentry.

 

Contact us for a no obligation consultation.


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Top 3 Do It Yourself Bedbug Blunders

Posted on May 9, 2013


Does your skin crawl whenever someone even makes a brief mention of bedbugs? If so, perhaps you've dealt with these blood-sucking pests, or you've known someone who has. A bedbug infestation takes up an incredible amount of time, and it requires professional treatment. Even so, in an effort to save money, people constantly try to tackle the problem themselves. Unfortunately, they usually only end up making the problem worse, or creating dangerous situations. Here are a few of the most common bedbug blunders people make when assessing or treating their infestations.

 

Mixing Chemicals


When you think too hard about the fact that bedbugs enjoy feeding on you at night, not only will you begin to jump every time a dust particle brushes against your skin, but you'll also start playing chemist right in your very own home. Mixing chemicals is dangerous, and lack of sleep can quickly convince you that if you just find the right combination, you'll crack the code that will result in the bedbugs' demise. Unfortunately, you're wrong.

 

Focusing Only on the Mattress


Contrary to popular belief, and contrary to their name, bedbugs don't always hang out on your mattress. Your mattress is where you are at night, so it's where they like to venture out to. Quite often, they'll hunker down in other locations in your bedroom. They might be lurking in your headboard, in a bedside table, or in that pile of clothes you keep on the floor. Chances are, if you do a little more searching around your bed, or in other places in your room, you'll find them. Even though they're shy, if your infestation is a bad one, you'll run into one eventually.

 

Searching During the Day


When do you look for bedbugs? During the day or at night? Remember, bedbugs are nocturnal. At nighttime they come out, following your carbon dioxide emissions to locate where you are. If you're looking for them during the daytime, you won't have much luck, especially if your infestation is relatively new. They're excellent at hiding, and they like to keep out of sight until the middle of the night.

 

Trying to diagnose and treat your own bedbug infestation can have devastating consequences. It can also result in a great amount of stress for you as well as for your entire family. At Extermco Termite & Pest Control, we have the necessary tools to treat your bedbug infestation and bring you the good night's sleep you've been missing.

For more information, contact us today.


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Fleas-The Bug with Amazing Jumping Power

Posted on Apr 25, 2013


Fleas-The Bug with Amazing Jumping Power

 

TEXT:

Bugs are everywhere and some are harder to get rid of than others.

Fleas are a six-legged parasite which feeds on blood. They can live on any warm-blooded animal but they especially love to live on cats, dogs, humans, rats and other rodents. Fleas can also be found living on blankets, the inside of shoes and on pant legs. They thrive in warm, humid condition at low altitudes.

Did you know?

 

  • The life expectancy of a flea is upwards of 100 days
  • In their lifetime, fleas will produce 400-500 offspring
  • Fleas get around by way of jumping from place to place
  • Fleas jump up to 7 inches high

 

If fleas run amok on your pet, your pet may suffer from medical problems such as tapeworms, hair loss, flea allergy dermatitis and skin irritations. If you own a kitten or a puppy, they may suffer from anemia. It is rather well known that fleas have spread bubonic plague from rodent to humans and rodent to rodent.

Once your pet is infested with fleas, there’s a pretty good chance your home will be covered in the little critters.

Is there such a thing as flea prevention?

 

  • Apply monthly treatments to your pets to keep fleas off
  • Vacuum your home frequently
  • Keep your home clean and free of pet hair
  • Don’t forget to treat your vehicle if your pet is a passenger
  • Depending on where you live, you may have to treat your pet 12 months out of the year
  • You can always contact us to take care of your flea problem!

 

Extermco is family owned and operated since 1962. Allow our trained professionals to identify your risk for flea infestation and treat the problem.


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Preparation for Bedbug Extermination

Posted on Apr 21, 2013


The preparation of a room for the erradication of bedbugs is essential for success.  An inspection of the area generally occurs before the treatment begins.  This gives the technician a sense of the full extent of the problem.  Once the bed bugs have been located and the size of the matter has been identified, room preparation must be completed.

 

  • Remove all loose soft fabric and material items from the affected area including: sheets, blankets, pillows, shoes, plush toys, towels, draperies or curtains and place them in sealed plastic bags for transport to laundry.
  • Couch cushions that are able to be removed and laundred should be bagged for transport.
  • Take all clothing and other belongings out of drawers, nightstands, tables, closets, wardrobes, and similar storage areas and out from under beds and off shelves and place in sealed plastic bags for transport to laundry.
  • Hard items that cannot be laundered, such as plastic toys and books, should be bagged separately for inspection.
  • The carpet must be vacuumed extensively.  If the vacuum is a bag vacuum, the bag should be transported to the dumpster and discarded away from the home.  If it has a dust cup, it should be emptied away from the home with extreme caution and carfulness.
  • Move all furniture at least 18 inches away from the walls.
  • Remove all electrical wall plates, phone jack plates, and light switch covers.  
  • Remove paintings, picture frames, and other hanging wall decor.
  • Remove television sets from walls, if applicable.
  • Electronic equipment should remain in the area for treatment.
  • Pry baseboards away from walls where possible.

It is important and necessary for you and your pets to vacate the area during the treatment service and re-enter after at least four hours.  Fish aquariums can be left; however, the air filters should be disconnected and the tank should be covered.

 

Laundering should be performed on all of the bagged soft items.  It is necessary for these items to be placed in hot water >60C or >140F or placed in a dryer on the highest heat setting for no less than 30 minutes.  To kill all stages, each unit should not be over loaded and is best when not more than 50% capacity has been reached.  These items cannot be safely treated with pesticides and chemicals due to the prolonged exposure to skin.  Therefore, this laundering step is crucial to the successful extermination of this problem.  Once laundering has been completed, all items should not be re-introduced to the affected area until the entire bedbug prep and treatment has been completed.

 

We understand this can be a very daunting process.  We also understand this is sensitive.  Please be aware the extermination process for this pest is lengthy, but by seeking the professional help of Extermco, you have committed to solving the problem.

 

For your consulation or more information on this nuisance, or other pests, contact us today.


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Termites Strike When Warm Weather Approaches

Posted on Apr 11, 2013


The first full week of spring is Termite Awareness Week as recognized by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA). The winter accross the United States has been relatively mild, save a few Noreasters.  Because of the warmth of the winter and the lack of hard freezes, termites can become a great nuisance when spring gets into full swing.  These tiny pests can literally eat you out of house and home.  It is imperative to be proactive about this bug. Extermco urges home and business owners to complete inspections of their properties for this pest.

 

These "silent destroyers" can eat through wood, flooring, and wallpaper quicker than you might suspect.  Termites only need an opening 1/64th of an inch wide to enter a structure, which is about the width of a single strand of hair.   They are generally most active in the morning when you are away from your home.  Complete structural damage worth thousands of dollars can occur within only a couple of years. Our technicians at Extermco would like to remind homeowners to have their homes inspected yearly, and to start maintenance treatments as early as possible; especially if any of the below signs are present:     

 

  • Mud tubes on the exterior of the home
  • Soft wood in the home that sounds hollow when tapped
  • Darkening or blistering of wood
  • Cracked or bubbling paint and/or wallpaper
  • Small piles resembling sawdust near a termite nest
  • Discarded wings near doors or on windowsills

 

We know your home or place of business is very important to you.  Our technicians will take care to assist you in the identification and extermination, if needed, of this costly pest.  Save your financial investment and contact us today for your inspection.


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When to hire an exterminator

Posted on Apr 5, 2013


So you have a bug infestation, and are wondering if it’s time to hire a professional exterminator to take care of the problem. Often times, people who are of the do-it-yourself mindset may make the problem worse by waiting too long or by not having the knowledge they need to handle the problem.

 

Usually, if an infestation is small, such as a trail of ants or a few cockroaches, store-bought remedies used correctly by the average do-it-yourselfer can handle the problem. Of utmost importance is removing the incentive for the bugs to be there in the first place - their food.

 

In the case of rodents, cockroaches, or ants, make sure they don’t have access to food. Ants in particular will leave a chemical scent trail that they will follow time and time again. Their chemical trail is easily disrupted with a little vinegar or baking soda. The scouts will find the food again eventually. While you can easily squish the scouts, it is best to remove the source with a thorough cleaning, and placing food items in plastic containers that seal well. This will help with roaches, as well.

 

In the summertime, ants will sometimes come in to just find water. Make sure to fix any plumbing leaks, and deny them access to water. If they persist, it’s time to call a professional exterminator

 

Fleas are a big problem but they can usually be handled by the do-it-yourselfer by using approved pesticides for the home and the pet in the manner prescribed on the labels. The yard is an often overlooked place where fleas will hide. Be sure to treat the yard where your pet goes as well as the indoors.

 

Termites, or carpenter ants can do a lot of damage, and do it quickly. They are almost impossible for the average Joe or Jane to handle on their own. You need a professional. Contact us now and let us handle them for you.


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Don't wait until it's to late with termites!

Posted on Apr 2, 2013


Benjamin Franklin once famously observed that the only two things guaranteed in life are death and taxes. Well, Mr. Franklin's house must not have had any wood in it, or he would have known that termites are also a guaranteed reality. If you live in a home which is made partially or entirely out of wood, it is really only a matter of time before some form of wood destroying insect finds its way in and starts making a meal out of your residence.

 

Many homeowners wait to take care of wood destroying insects until it is too late. Prompted either by damage to their home, or by a desire to sell, they will call an inspector to look at their residence and discover that they have a problem. Depending how bad the infestation is, treatment can be very expensive, and in some cases may even require major renovations. A mature subterranean. termite colony will eat between 17 and 18 board feet per year, depending on the species. What this means for the homeowner is that a single year of termite infestation can cause serious harm, and expensive repairs, to your home.

 

So when is the best time to treat for termites? Experts agree that the earlier you treat, the better. And the earliest and best time to treat is before termites even show up. Treating your property before there is any evidence of termites creates a strong barrier to protect your largest investment. If you are planning on building a new structure, we strongly advise that you pre-treat the soil before pouring the foundation.

 

For great termite treatment in the Fort Smith area, contact us, and let us create the perfect custom treatment plan for you. Whether you already have some wood destroying insects present, or you're doing the smart thing and taking advance precautions, we will work with you to make sure that your home or building is completely termite free.

 

Now thru May you can get $101 dollars off a termite treatment from Extermco!


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Bedbug Treatment: Take Care of it Once and For All!

Posted on Mar 21, 2013


If you talk to anyone who has every dealt with a bedbug problem, they'll tell you that it's one of the most horrific experiences out there. Bedbugs are incredibly difficult to get rid of, and to do it right, you need the help of a professional who has a history of being able to deal with these annoying pests once and for all. If you're looking for bedbug treatment, Extermco Termite & Pest Control is the company you can trust to bring you relief.

 

If you're experiencing a bedbug problem, your first reaction is probably going to be to run to the nearest store and pick up every chemical you can find in an attempt to get rid of them. One of the worst mistakes people make in dealing with bedbugs is trying to exterminate them themselves. Products purchased in hardware stores or department stores only serve to make the problem worse. For example, in theory, a bedbug fogger might sound like a good idea. However, bedbugs will run away from the fumes a fogger releases, and hide elsewhere in the house. Foggers can actually make the problem worse by spreading bedbugs to other areas of your home.

 

We use only the most up-to-date and effective methods to rid your home of its bedbug infestation. It's crucial to not put off giving us a call. Our dedicated and professional staff is on hand to answer any questions you might have about your bedbug infestation, so contact us today.


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Is Your Spring Cleaning Rousting out Roaches, Ants or Spiders?

Posted on Mar 14, 2013


So it’s time for spring cleaning already, and it’s not a job you love. In addition to the fun—not!—of moving furniture in order to clean thoroughly, you know that you might come across roaches, ants, spiders, or other critters, who are also deciding it’s time to get up and move around now that the weather is warming up.

 

Yes, it’s that time of year—but we can help. Whether it’s ants in your pantry, spiders in your garage, or roaches under the kitchen sink, we have the professional knowledge and skill to beat back any invasions from each of these pests—and more.

 

Ants seem to be the most common pest in our area—or at least we get the most calls for them. They will use just about any little crack or crevice to get into our homes, and they come in search of food. From the tiny black ones that you sometimes see marching in a line across your kitchen floor to carpenter ants, which are over half an inch long, we can kill them all. By the way, did you know that carpenter ants, like carpenters, cut through wood but don’t actually eat it? This means that you might mistake the sawdust appearing near your woodwork for termite damage when it’s really carpenter ants. That’s why it’s important to give the professionals a call—we can make sure to treat the true cause of the problem!

 

Roaches really seem to love city sewer systems, and move from one house to another that way, as well as in just about anything you bring into the house, from bags to books to clothing. They like to hang out in warm, humid environments, which is why kitchens, bathrooms and laundry rooms are often their homes. They like sweets and starches—like humans!—so you may find them in your library or eating your wallpaper as well as under the kitchen sink.

 

Fortunately for you, most spiders are harmless, and their webs do catch a number of flying pests around your home. Unfortunately, however, there are two kinds of spiders that have a poisonous bite: brown recluse and black widows. You can read more about them on our pest web page, to see if you can figure out which type you have—but we recommend contacting us rather than trying to get rid of them yourself.

 

So when it’s time for your spring cleaning, contact us to help with the bugs you find. You and your house will be cleaner and safer with our help.


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The secret to pest control in 10 words or less...

Posted on Jan 28, 2013


I have been in the "bug" industry my entire life. I started in the summers in 1994, but I was roaming my dad's office all the way back to 1982. Those of you that don't know me, that puts me at two years old. That's 30 years around the bug business. I would say I have a little experience under my belt.

 

If you're reading this, you're expecting to hear (or read) the secret to pest control. I have it, and it's only taken me 30 years to figure it out.  Now, I'm going to pass it on to you. "To BEAT the bug, you have to BE the bug" Now, you may think that sounds like hippie bug guy talk but, it's true and it's easy, let me explain.

 

Lets compare bugs to you. If you are hungry, what do you do? You eat! If you're thirsty? You drink! If it's cold outside, you will find a warm spot and cozy up. If you're house was flooding, wouldn't you take your family to higher ground no matter what? Of course you would and so would I.

 

Living by "To Beat the bug, you have to Be the bug" you will need to look for 3 things. Food, water and entry points. If you leave food out, you will absolutely find yourself with an ant or even worse a roach problem. "Food" could range from dropped food, to dog food, to grease in your oven.  Water that is left out will also attract bugs. "Water" could be any liquid spilled, a leaky faucet, or condensation on water lines.  The last thing is entry points.  Although some roaches are brought in on your person or by personal things, most bugs come from the outside. So whether or not, they are coming in for the food, the water, or the shelter, they are still COMING IN.. So that means they have to find a way inside through entry points. A few examples of entry points would be; Cracks around doors/windows, dryer vents, electrical outlets, water spigots, attic vents, etc...

 

When I'm going on an initial inspection, I take my 30 years experience and I apply my top secret method of "being the bug" and that is what makes me so successful in getting rid of your bugs and that is what can make you successful too!


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Eeek! A mouse in the house

Posted on Oct 13, 2012


You're relaxing at home and out of your peripheral you see a furry unwanted house guest darting down your wall. Even though your newest adversary weighs in at a little less than 1 oz, your body automatically sends itself into fight or flight mode. I would have to say that, that breaks down to 1% fight and 99% flight. As you're reading this I bet you already have a vision of yourself or someone else sitting on a kitchen counter top or standing in a chair, 100% in flight mode. It's the time of year for rodents to start entering your home. It's the time to overcome your instantaneous "flight" reaction and force yourself to "fight" so your one mouse doesn't transform into many, many mice.Scared of a Mouse

 

There are many different baits, traps, powders, and rodenticides to help control mice. But, the most effective rodent program is actually just as simple as rodent prevention. Keep them out of your home from the beginning and don't worry about harsh chemicals and/or dead mice.

 

Mice enter your home for only a few reasons. Food, water, and shelter. Eliminate all 3 and you're well on your way to having a rodent free home.

 

Sanitation efforts are a great place to start. Maintain clean areas where food is stored and keep all sealed containers sealed tightly, ESPECIALLY dog food. Clean under stoves, refrigerators and diswashers. Keep countertops clear of food and grease, don't leave glasses of water out overnight and store dry food, pet food and birdseed are in sealed containers.  It doesn't just


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Price vs. Value

Posted on Feb 14, 2012


When you're making a buying decision, do you make the decision based primarily on price? If you said yes, you're probably in the majority, and for the most part, I'm right there wih you! But, I'm only with you when we're talking about buying a product NOT a service.  I'll be the first to admit, when I'm ready to buy a new pair of jeans, an iphone accessory, or even a TV, I'll ask my trusty friend Google to point me to the direction for the cheapsest price.  If I can go to Best Buy and buy a 46" LED Sharp television for $1,000 or I can buy a 46" LED Sharp television from newegg.com for $450, I would have to be crazy not to buy it. I think we have all heard the saying "comparing apples to apples" right? As long as I'm getting the EXACT same thing for less money, I'm in, and you should be too!

 

The scientific formula for buying a service differs than that of buying a product. Would I buy a service from a company with the lowest bid? Maybe! (You thought I was going to say no, huh?) It depends on the "value" I was getting with the service. I absolutely buy EVERYTHING based off of value and neveroff of price.  Even mentioned above, I bought the TV based off of price , but the value was the same since it was the EXACT same thing. Comparing different service companies is not even close to comparing apples to apples.  I would say it's more like comparing an apples to rocks! You can use them both as paper weights but, that's about the extent of it.  Always, get a few quotes, ask questions, listen to what they are offering and base your buying decision off of the value of the service not the price.  If the best value comes from the comany with the lowest price, that great! But, I can guarantee you that if you're buying a service solely off of price, you will regret it!


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Pumpkin Pest Control

Posted on Oct 4, 2011


Ask any kid who is greeted with a mouthful of fruit flies while passing by a prematurely rotting pumpkin on Halloween night: That’s not the treat they were expecting.

As harmless as they are, vinegar flies – more infamously known as fruit flies – tend to create a brown cloud around any rotted or spoiled perishables. A carved pumpkin propped on a porch in the sun for days or weeks on end is the equivalent of a pillowcase full of treats for these pesky insects.

When it comes to pumpkin pest control, you need only apply a few simple tricks to their carved pumpkins before Halloween in order to keep their works of gourd art as fresh as possible.

1. Get All the Guts

After cutting a good-sized opening at the top of the pumpkin, remove as much of the pulp from inside as possible. Using a metal utensil such as a spoon, spatula or small putty knife, apply a decent amount of pressure while scouring the inside of the pumpkin wall. The more of the phlegm-like guts you scrape out now, the less of a mold problem you’ll have later. Pest control for your pumpkin means slowing the decomposition process as much as possible.

2. Store Carefully

Any Extermco carved pumpkin needs a cool, dry place to hang out before Halloween. Begin your pumpkin pest management by storing it in the garage or basement, provided the temperate is accommodating – between 41-50 degrees Fahrenheit. If you want to display your carved pumpkin before Oct. 31, choose a place with limited exposure to the elements, such as on a covered porch or patio or perched in a window facing north. Avoid warm, humid places like laundry rooms or on top of the radiator.

3. Spray Away

The key to a longer-lasting carved pumpkin – and hence fruit fly pest management – is finding just the right balance of moisture. A dry pumpkin will shrivel up, deforming your Extermco Gricket, while too much wetness will create an afro of moldy fuzz in the belly of the pumpkin. In such cases, the bottom and weak areas will rot, and your pest management scheme will have failed.

A simple mixture of 1 teaspoon of bleach and a gallon of room temperature water when sprayed daily on the inside of the pumpkin works simultaneously as a hydrating and antimicrobial solution. After spraying, turn the carved pumpkin upside down to allow it to drain. This ensures the bleach water doesn’t settle at the bottom and assist with the decaying process. When properly done, this technique can delay the rotting process and help prevent insects from swarming your Gricket carving

Keep in mind that no carved pumpkin can be preserved indefinitely; the bleach solution is really just a temporary pest management costume your pumpkin can wear to stave off fruit flies for a time. After more than a week, you’ll still find normal telltale signs of deterioration: slight shriveling around detailed edges, soft spots, slimy areas where the bleach has killed mold, and perhaps even some blackish fuzz around the lid of the pumpkin. However, there should be no substantial rotting to fear – and hence no fruit flies swarming about. Your pumpkins will be sitting pretty on Halloween night.

5. Don’t Get Tricked

Do not be fooled by tips that suggest using any kind of glue or acrylic spray to preserve your pumpkin. Glue and acrylic spray, while initially providing a barrier between moisture and the pumpkin wall traps in the moisture already inside the pumpkin, causing the pumpkin to rot early.

Bleach and water sprayed on a carved pumpkin each day before Halloween is an easy, effective pest management for fruit flies. Keeping the pumpkins in a cool, dry place will prevent mold and rot from setting in early, and it will also keep the annoying presence of insects at bay.


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My house FLOODS

Posted on May 27, 2011


I recently moved into a new house here in Fort Smith.  It was not disclosed to me that my entire back yard gets OVER WAIST DEEP in water when it rains!  Luckily this house is a crawlspace and it's built high enough of the ground that the water doesn't actually come inside the "main" part of the house.  BUT, there is a lower level.  The lower level floor is at ground level.  So, as you can imagine, the water DOES come inside that part.  It seeps through the brick and slowly fills up with water.  That particular room has carpet, so it sucks the water up like a sponge.  As much as I have sucked the water up with a carpet shampooer,  I can't get all the water out.  I eventually just had to take all the carpet and pad out.  While i was watching my lower room fill up with water.  I knew that I wouldn't be going in that room until the water receded, which was about 2 days.  The reason I tell you that, is to tell you this.  Ants live in our yards, underground.  When it rains, it floods their home.  just like it did mine.  And, just like me, they had to leave the area that is flooding and move somewhere else.  And, usually that somewhere else is your home.  I'm sure you noticed by now that when it rains, all the bugs (especially ants) start moving into your home.  Ants especially will go to extremes to get out of the water.  When my yard was under water, they moved their entire colony into my mail box by the road.  I opened it up and there were the ants, their eggs, and food that they have brought with them.  They did what they had to do to keep their colony from drowning.  Now you know why you get bombarded by ants/bugs every single time it sprinkles.


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Ants or Termites: Know the difference

Posted on Mar 9, 2011


Is it a termite or is it an ant? It's very important to know the difference.  In case you haven't heard termites cause a LOT of damage, over 5 billion dollars a year to be exact.  I literally have over 50 "false alarms" a year with these misidentified pests.  I have to say rightfully so, the two can be about the same in size, color and have similar wings.   There are few physical differences, and hopefully I can explain them so you will be able to identify both.

In most circumstances, the size of the swarm alone can help you determine whether you're dealing with termites or ants.  Termite alates(swarmers) usually swarm by the hundreds and in most cases the thousands!  I have literally seen termite swarms where you could easily mistake them for smoke inside someone's home.  Ant swarms are usually smaller in size and very rarely will take place inside the home.

Like I said there are a few physical differences:  The first thing you will notice is the wing size and shape.  Termite wings are twice as long as their body and oblong in shape, where ant wings are much shorter (usually the size of the ant) and have a definite tear dropped shape.  The next thing is the actual shape of the body. Flying ants

 


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The Burning Question

Posted on Jan 21, 2011


Are bed bugs really a BIG DEAL?  I can't tell you how many times I've been asked this question over the last few months. I've had it over the phone, in person, by email through text message, you name it and I've got it.  These little guys are definitely a trending topic in our area right now.  And I can see why, they are basically on every major news network you tune in to.  As a matter of fact, I literally just watched a special "bed bug" episode of "The View" on ABC.  You can definitely say that they have gone main stream.  This leads me back to my original question. "Are bed bugs really a BIG DEAL"  It's kind of a tricky question.  If you ask me are bed bugs a big deal in New York, Detroit, or Chicago (in the top 5 bed bug infested cities) I would say, yes they are definitely a big deal.  If you asked me, are bed bugs a big deal here in Fort Smith, I would say....Ehhhh, not really, at least not now.  BUT, they will be in the very near future.  When I say "near" I mean by next year (2012), yes, bed bugs will be an extremely big deal in our area.  It's amazing how quickly the problem has become so wide spread.  It is estimated


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Buyer Protection.....Really?

Posted on Dec 13, 2010


If you have ever bought or sold a house in Arkansas before you are well aware of a particular "rule". It's the rule that the lender requires the seller, to provide the buyer, with a full year of termite protection. 

 

At first thought, its a GREAT idea, since our area has one of the highest termite risks in the country! But, and this is a BIG but, in many cases the buyer isn't getting protection at all.  They are getting the biggest false sense of security you could imagine.  What really happens is, The sellers are just that.... selling!  They are wanting to get out of the house without putting any more money than they have to (can't say I blame them).  The sellers will price shop until they find the "low" bid and they'll take it. The buyers will get some paperwork at closing stating that xyz pest control has the policy on their house and thats it. The house will never get "PROTECTED" from termites and the new buyer will never receive the option to renew their policy the following year.  With that being said, did you know that termites cause more than 5 BILLION DOLLARS in damage each year?  In the US alone! Well they do!

That's more than tornadoes, fires, hurricanes, and earthquakes COMBINED!  Does that sound like a false of sense of security to you? Of course it does, you think your home, the biggest investment you will ever make, has been treated and PROTECTED from termites.  When in fact, the pest company (of your sellers choice) has never even laid eyes on your actual house,  much less treated it .  If you don't think it happens, trust me, it happens all the time.  I personally know of two local Fort Smith companies that is in court today (12/13/2010) because of the exact same thing.  An unknowing family moved into their house with a clean bill of "termite" health, you could call it,) and a few months later they discovered well over $20,000 worth of termite damage no one ever knew about because no one has ever SHOWED UP to inspect! This is one of many examples I personally have.  Now,  I will not throw these companies under the bus publicly, but you can email me at justin@extermco.com and I will be more than happy to let you in on it.

 

I'm by no means saying that every single time someone buys a house they are getting "ripped off" on the termite end, because I'm not. I'm saying you can get estimates from all walks of life.  National chains with their national prices, landscape companies pretending to be pest control companies, and the ever so growing popular "fly by nighters"  that don't know the first thing about the industry.

 

When looking for your pest company look for somone established, local, and a great reputation. Ask around, trust me they're are only a handful of great companies till out there, you just have to look for them.


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Let the Blogging Begin!

Posted on Nov 21, 2010


Welcome! We are proud to announce the launch of our new state-of-the-art website, as well as my new blog.


I am well aware that blogging is no longer a “niche” market.  I believe that it’s a significant and growing part of our population.


Hopefully you will find this blog helpful with any of your pest control curiosities. The goal of this blog, for the most part, is to be informative and to provide valuable insights for people that have questions.


I intentionally left my blog nameless. I left it open for customers that visit our site, our Facebook friends, Twitter followers, etc.  So, with that said, please anyone and everyone give me some ideas for our blog name. Example: “The Bug Report” or “The Insect Inquirer."


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