Memphis, Tenn. (Vocus) July 2, 2010
Homeowners will seek independence from backyard pests at cookouts, pool parties and other outdoor activities during the July 4 weekend. To keep pests from ruining your holiday festivities, take the following steps from the experts at Terminix.
Ants – Whether you’re serving hamburgers, hot dogs or ice cream, ants are attracted to just about anything that humans eat. Ants are the No. 1 nuisance pest in the United States but can be kept off the guest list by following these simple tips:
1. Immediately clean drink and food spills.
2. Take dirty plates and utensils indoors after eating.
3. Sweep entertainment areas after meals to eliminate remaining food particles.
Yellowjackets – The yellowjacket’s sweet tooth, coupled with its aggressive nature, can spell trouble for some outdoor activities. Unlike some stinging insects, yellowjackets and other wasps do not lose their stinger when attacking, meaning they can repeatedly sting their victims. While attacks are rarely life threatening, they can be a major concern for those who are allergic to insect stings. To keep these pests away, take these steps:
1. Keep fruits covered at all times.
2. Serve juices in pitchers with sealed lids.
3. Throw away all trash in lid-sealed containers.
Flies – Flies keep your guests swatting and shooing, ruining even well-planned parties. These flying pests often breed in and live in garbage, animal manure and other waste and can spread diseases to humans when landing on food. Use these tips to help keep flies at bay:
1. Use fans to create a light breeze across a table.
2. Serve food in containers with removable lids.
3. Locate trash receptacles as far from you and your guests as possible.
Mosquitoes – These bloodthirsty pests make outdoor events miserable. Mosquitoes can breed in only a few tablespoons of water, and they usually do not travel far from their original breeding site. Mosquitoes are a health threat, as they are known to transmit multiple forms of encephalitis, most notably the West Nile virus. Take these steps to minimize the presence of mosquitoes:
1. Empty birdbaths and unused containers at least once a week to eliminate breeding grounds in your own backyard.
2. Keep gutters clean so water does not accumulate. Any water that stands for seven days or longer could become a breeding area for mosquitoes.
Fragrances – Remove scented candles from the entertainment area. These might attract flying insects that mistake the scent for fruit or flowers.
Lighting – Many flying insects are attracted to light. To maintain the mood you want while keeping pests as far away as possible, consider lighting the eating, cooking and social areas from a distance.
These simple steps will limit opportunities for pests, but only a professional pest control company can eliminate insects from a home.
For more information about pests, visit http://www.terminix.com.