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Preventing pests from entering your home this Spring

MGN Online
MGN Online(KALB)
Published: Mar. 6, 2017 at 5:09 AM EST
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Monday, March 6, 2017

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) -- As we head into Spring, we are also heading into critter season. You could see more insects in and around your home.

Mosquitoes, ants, termites; all insects we are starting to see as the weather warms up, and they will use any cracks in your home to get inside.

Pest experts are warning homeowners to be on the lookout for any termite activity.

Termites cause some of the worst damage to your home. Van Wagner of Arrow Exterminators says they cause more damage than fires and storms combined, and they can live in your home for years before you notice them.

"You may come home at the end of the day and see several hundreds of even thousands of little black insects in your window sill, and at your doorway, so don't assume that its ants, a lot of people do," said Wagner.

Warning Signs of a Termite Infestation:

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Termite wings

which are thin, papery wings and typically found near window sills or floors.

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Mud tubes built by termites

to connect them from the soil to their food source.

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Distorted areas of paint or wood surfaces

which appear "bubbled" or cracked.

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Hollow-sounding wood

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Frass or termite droppings

is a sign of dry wood termites and has a hard, gritty feel to it.

To keep the pests away from your home, Wagner says keep water away and eliminate moisture. Make sure your gutters are cleaned out properly, trim your hedges and other shrubberies away from your home, including tree limbs.

Here are some other recommendations:

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Eliminate moisture around foundations.

Also, divert water from the house by using proper downspouts and gutters because termites are attracted to moisture.

-

Do not stack firewood or lumber near your home.

Termites can burrow into the woodpile and then right into the home.

-

Remove old tree stumps in the yard.

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Avoid excess piles of mulch

since this is a favorite food source for termites.

-

Reduce humidity in crawl spaces

with proper ventilation.

-

Have your home inspected annually by a licensed pest professional who specializes in termite control.

If you have termites, protection is necessary to maintain your coverage and renew annually.

So, if you see any swarm of insects near or in your home; you should have it inspected.

 Pest Prevention Checklist

1. KEEP PESTS OUTSIDE WHERE THEY BELONG

  • Thoroughly check items that are common transportation for pests including plants, firewood and even groceries before bringing them inside the home.
  • Seal any gaps around exterior doors and ensure they close completely after entry or exit.
  • Make sure all windows have screens that are free of holes or tears and are secured properly.
  • Ensure any gaps around window frames are properly sealed.
  • Store outdoor garbage receptacles away from the home and make sure lids fit securely.
  • Seal cracks and crevices around entry points for wiring and pipes with caulk.

2. DON'T PROVIDE A WATER SOURCE

  • Clean up spills immediately.
  • Keep sink areas clean and dry after use.
  • Clean and dry mops and buckets after each use.
  • Repair dripping faucets, clogged drains or plumbing leaks as soon as possible.

3. DON'T PROVIDE A FOOD SOURCE

  • Keep food in sealed, air-tight containers.
  • Wipe down countertops after use and make sure they stay crumb free.
  • Rinse food containers before discarding.
  • Clean kitchen appliances after each use.
  • Make sure your inside trash receptacle is clean, has a secure fitting cover and place all garbage in sealed plastic bags.

4. DON'T PROVIDE AN INVITING HOME

  • Regularly inspect your pantry and cupboards for holes in packaging or walls and insect/rodent droppings.
  • Store all paper products including boxes and bags in a dry area, at least six inches off the floor and away from the wall.
  • Keep trash and recycling collection areas clean and dry.
  • Remove all trash and recycling at least once a week.

Source: Arrow Exterminators

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