Early Arrival of Winter Weather Drives Rodents Indoors

Across the country, chilly temperatures and early snowstorms are forcing more than just people indoors. Rodents including mice, rats and squirrels are seeking food, water and shelter in homes. Unfortunately, more bad weather could be on the way as the Farmers’ Almanac is forecasting a season of unusually cold and stormy weather. The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) encourages homeowners to take the necessary steps to protect themselves and their families from rodent infestations during colder months.

“Rodents invade an estimated 21 million homes in the United States every winter,” said Missy Henriksen, vice president of public affairs for NPMA. “But with many places already experiencing cold weather conditions, it is important to be proactive and vigilant in preventing these pests from becoming unwelcome houseguests.”

The accumulation of feces from mice and rats can spread bacteria and contaminate food sources. These rodent droppings are known to trigger allergies and cause diseases including Hantavirus and Salmonella. In addition to health risks, rodents can chew through wallboards, cardboard, wood and even electrical wiring, increasing the risk of a house fire.

NPMA offers the following tips to avoid a rodent infestation:

  • Store items in boxes and plastic sealed containers, rather than cardboard boxes.
  • Keep food in airtight containers and dispose of garbage regularly.
  • Install screens over chimney vents and openings.
  • Seal cracks and holes on the outside of the home, including areas where utilities and pipes enter the home.
  • Replace loose mortar and weather stripping around basement foundation and windows.
  • Install gutters or diverts to channel water away from your home.
  • Store firewood at least 20 feet from the home and five feet off the ground.
  • Inspect wires, insulation and walls for any signs of gnaw marks.
  • If you find rodent feces, hear sounds of scurrying in the walls or observe other signs of an infestation, contact a licensed pest professional.

 

Source: http://www.pestworld.org/

Africanized Honeybee

Description

Africanized “killer” bees look so much like a regular honeybee that the only way to tell the two apart is by measuring their bodies. Africanized bees have different wing measurements than honeybees.

Pest Facts

Color: Golden yellow with darker bands of brown.

Legs: Six

Shape: Oval; bee shape

Size: 1/2 inches

Antennae: Yes

Flying: Yes

Region: AZ, CA, NM, NV, TX

Habits

These bees defend their colony and attack when threatened.

Habitat

Africanized bees have small colonies, so they can build nests in unique places. They have been known to live in tires, crates, boxes, and empty cars.

Threats

Their venom is no more dangerous than regular honeybees-they just tend to attack in greater numbers, which causes more danger to humans.

Prevention

Because of the aggressive nature of these pests and the enormity of their nests, a pest control professional or beekeeper must address an infestation. If you are chased by Africanized honeybees, run in a zig zag pattern and seek shelter in a house or car.

 

*FOR MORE INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT THE AFRICANIZED HONEYBEE,

CHECK OUT DEREK ROACH’S LINK: http://www.propacificbee.com/infographic/AHB/infographic.php

 

http://www.npmapestworld.org/pestPedia/article.cfm?id=608