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Mouse in the House

christmas mouse

Photo by Alan Turkus

 

Mouse in the House!

“ ‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a ….” EEEEK!!!

Mouse?

Was that the word you were looking for before you were so rudely interrupted?? Well, dear reader, I am afraid that is probably incorrect. When it comes to a mouse in the house, he’s seldom a solo invader. You see, a mouse leaves powerful urine scent trails that send a high alert to their other field-wandering friends. After all, the never-ending smorgasbord of Christmas cookie crumbs, cakes, and other delightful holiday goodies left sitting out and lining the corners of the kitchen floor, is simply too good not to share. No, unfortunately, it’s not a mouse you’re dealing with. It’s MICE.

Your Next Problem

If you’re not able to remove all existing mice within your home immediately, and successfully pinpoint and seal all areas of access, those mice will rapidly reproduce. The gestation period for a mouse is 19-21 days, with each litter consisting of 3-15 mice. Furthermore, a single female mouse can bear anywhere from five to ten litters a year, so those numbers can add up pretty quickly.

Damage & Disease

Now imagine all those teeth gnawing away at your wires, your plumbing and your insulation – a major potential fire hazard! Then there’s the soiling of so many precious family keepsakes with their concentrated urine and feces. After that, think about the disease, germs, and even fleas that mice may be carrying. Had enough? Even if you try to put the thought of them out of your mind, there it is; that incessant chewing and gnawing you suddenly hear while you’re trying to sleep. Now have you had enough?

Don’t Worry.

At HonorGuard Pest Management, we know how to handle Nashville mice extermination. We’ll remove all existing mice, thoroughly clean all traces of their presence, and ensure every point of entry is sealed up tight. No more gnawing in the night, or disgusting souvenirs in your food pantry. You’ll be back to enjoying a 100% mouse-free house!

Contact HonorGuard Pest Management of Nashville

We are grateful to continually be recognized for our excellence in service. At HonorGuard, we are your Middle Tennessee Pest Management Experts for commercial properties as well as residential homes. For professional help with lasting results for all your pest elimination issues, give us a call at HonorGuard Pest Management Services at (615) 242-5440. We look forward to serving you!

For info about special offers and savings from

HonorGuard Pest Management, click HERE: www.pestmanagementashville.com/

Protect Your Home and Family From Bed Bugs

Bed Bug Bites

Bed Bugs Get Around

Did you know that Bed Bugs love to travel? It’s true. That’s why it’s especially important to be on the lookout for signs of the dreaded insects during the holidays, when the number of visitors entering your home is at an all-time high. They can secure handy spots to stow away in clothing, purses, bags, luggage, and shoes. So what’s the best way to detect and protect your home and family from Bed Bugs?

The First Step:

Knowing what you’re looking for. Bed Bugs are:

  1. Small reddish brown insects
  2. Most often found on your mattress near the seams and edges, often appearing as dots
  3. Bed Bugs lay little white eggs, and shed crusty skin as they progress through life cycles
  4. Often indicated in large numbers by the detection of an oddly sweet smell in an area
  5. Known for leaving swollen red bite marks on skin exposed while sleeping

Second Step:

Clean your home thoroughly, especially all places where guests are likely to place their belongings while visiting.

Third Step:

In the case of overnight guests, be sure to change all bedsheets to light colors. That will make it easier to detect the presence of invading insects.

Fourth Step:

When guests arrive, prepare a singular location for all coats & belongings to be stored, such as a hall closet, and clean immediately upon guest’s departure. If coats are to be stored upon a fabric surface such as a bed or sofa, cover the surface with a clean, sturdy sheet before guests arrive, and toss directly into a hot water wash as soon as the last guests leave.

Fifth Step:

If you’ve detected Bed Bugs in your home, don’t try to go it alone. Call HonorGuard Pest Management as soon as possible. We’ve got all the experience you need to help you eliminate Bed Bugs from your home thoroughly, and permanently.


Protect Your Home and Family From Bed Bugs

With HonorGuard Pest Management of Nashville, your family and home will be free once more from the bane of Bed Bugs. As your Middle Tennessee Pest Management Experts we are happy to help you find lasting results for all your pest elimination issues. Give us a call at HonorGuard Pest Management Services at (615) 242-5440. We look forward to serving you!

For info about special offers and savings from

HonorGuard Pest Management, click HERE: www.pestmanagementashville.com/

Control Fall Pests Before They Control You

critter_control_honorguard_pest_control_nashville_tnAs summer fades away along with the warm temperature and sunny days, fall becomes more apparent. Leaves begin to change color and fall to the ground, and the wind has a cool, crisp edge to it. The weather turns chillier and we turn to the protective warmth of our homes. This idyllic seasonal change comes with just one problem: pests like the warmth of your house as well. Little critters like rodents and insects take the changing weather as a signal to find shelter before winter sets in and a heated home acts as the perfect refuge.

Most people rightfully feel disturbed at the thought of a pest infestation in their homes. Imagining disease-ridden mice scurrying about behind the walls or cockroaches scuttling out from under the refrigerator is enough to make your skin crawl. Unfortunately, these pests and others come with more hazards than a few sleepless nights.

One common pest is the rodent. Mice and rats are the most frequently seen rodents that infest homes and they can be quite dangerous. These animals carry diseases such as Salmonella and Hantavirus, which can be left behind as the rodents explore your kitchen at night or can be dispersed in the air if you accidentally disturb their fresh droppings. Another issue they cause is physical damage to your home. Mice and rodents chew on everything including wires, and these hot wires can eventually cause a house fire. They also enjoy nesting in insulation, so once they feel comfortable in your house, convincing them to leave is nearly impossible.

Another pest you might find in your home is the cockroach. These hardy bugs not only disturb homeowners, but they can also be hazardous to your health. Cockroach saliva and waste will induce physical reactions in people who suffer from allergies and asthma. They gather near improperly stored food such as old meals left in the open or garbage that has not been emptied recently. Killing cockroaches is challenging, as well. Seeing as they have survived for millions of years essentially unchanged, cockroaches are resilient critters. The only way to effectively eliminate cockroaches is to have a professional pest control company treat your home.

Spiders also pose threats to people. Several species of spiders in the US have venom that cause severe allergic reactions. These bites may require hospital visits, so eliminating spider infestations is crucial to your family’s health.

A pest that everyone fears is the infamous termite. These insects feed off of dead plant material, which means your home’s wooden support beams are not safe. Termite infestations happen quickly and often quietly, and before you know it, your home has become structurally unsound. Ridding your home of termites as soon as possible will save you thousands of dollars in long-term damage.

If you suspect you have a pest problem, get in touch with a professional pest control service to take care of it. In the areas of Knoxville and Nashville, Tennessee and Atlanta, Georgia, contact Honorguard Pest [] for an expert consultation. The service men and women at Honorguard want to protect your home as much as you do.

Published by James Brockman and tagged with: Tags: , , , | No Comments

All About Brown Recluse Spiders

One bite of a brown recluse spider can be deadly for your children or even the elderly living in your home. Don't risk it. Call us and we'll exterminate those pesky spiders for you.

One bite of a brown recluse spider can be deadly for your children or even the elderly living in your home. Don’t risk it. Call us and we’ll exterminate those pesky spiders for you.

Possibly the most unnerving of all the pests our customers face, brown recluse spiders are prolific in the South, where Honor Guard has offices in Nashville, Knoxville, and Atlanta. The bad news is that the bite of a brown recluse spider can be extremely poisonous, especially to children and older adults. However, 90 percent of their bites are not deemed medically significant, according to North Carolina State University.When the bites are severe, they can result in a red wound that continues to swell and expand, as the skin appears to harden and turn into an ulcer with a dry bottom and blue or gray borders. This painful wound is usually between one-and-a-half to two-and-three-quarter inches, can take months to heal, and may leave a scar that may require surgery to improve. Other symptoms of brown recluse bites include chills and fever, nausea and vomiting. Sometimes these bites even result in death.

Where Brown Recluses Live

The brown recluse is a very tenacious and hard-to-kill arachnid that shares its habitat with humans, preferring to take residence in dark, undisturbed corners, under furniture, inside boxes, behind books, in piles of laundry, and inside shoes. These spiders can survive as many as six months without food or water. They usually remain hidden away during the day and roam around at night. Their webs are sparse, loose, sticky, and short-lived, as they use them only briefly to hold their eggs. In addition, they never make their webs out in the open, instead hiding their retreats behind objects.

The good news is that brown recluses are not aggressive and only bite humans when they’re touched, disturbed, or trapped—such as when a human and a spider get between the same bed sheets or when a human puts his foot in a shoe the spider has deemed home. Brown recluses cannot bite through clothing, however, and are only able to bite when in contact with bare skin.

What Brown Recluses Look Like

Also known as a “violin spider,” the brown recluse is distinguished by a dark brown, violin-shaped spot on its head. These arachnids are small—generally one-quarter to one-half inch long—and have three pairs of eyes, as opposed to four pairs like most other spiders. Its legs are light brown and its abdomen dark brown, yellow, or greenish yellow—always uniform in color.

Brown recluses are commonly confused with long-bodied cellar spiders, grass spiders, American house spiders, and fishing spiders. If you’re not sure if it’s a brown recluse you have on your hands, feel free to email us a photo. Our expert entomologist will be happy check it out and identify the spider for you.

How to Get Rid of Brown Recluses

Unfortunately, these spiders are difficult to get rid of, especially in older homes and crawling spaces, where they may be well established. By “difficult” we don’t mean “impossible,” those of us at Honor Guard Pest just have to go about exterminating brown recluses differently and more aggressively than we do most other types of spiders and insects. For instance, bug bombs and foggers don’t work well with brown recluses.

We begin by setting out glue board traps in corners, beneath furniture, and along wall-floor junctures. Not only are we able to identify the spiders this way, but glue traps are also actually quite efficient at capturing and killing a large number of recluses—especially males, which tend to do more wandering. Glue traps are pretty useless in capturing female spiders, as they usually stay hidden. To tackle brown recluses more completely, we use special dust insecticides and go the extra mile to apply them in cracks, voids, and behind switch and outlet plates. In this way, our customers find the number of brown recluses in their home greatly reduced.

There are some things homeowners themselves can do to lessen the number of brown recluses or reduce the chances of a recluse bite. Consider moving beds away from walls and drapes, and remove any bedskirts—all things that allow the spider to crawl up your bed. Also keep shoes and other items off your floors, and shake shoes out before putting them on. Removing excess clutter can help with a brown recluse problem, too.

In addition to brown recluse spiders, Honor Guard Pest can eliminate a number of other pests from your home, including termites, bed bugs, and mosquitoes.

Traveling This Holiday Season?

Each year at HonorGuard, we receive hundreds of calls from prospective customers who seek relief from various insect related problems.  However, there is one infestation that causes the most alarm and panic…the occurrence of bed bugs!

Bed bug infestations have rapidly spread across the United States.  The most common misconception is that bed bugs only occur in lower prices motels and apartments.  This is a myth and should be set aside.  Instances of bed bugs have no correlation to social or economic class.  Additionally, there have been several reports of bed bugs in structures that we would not normally suspect to harbor bed bugs.  In addition to resort hotels, bed bugs have been found in movie theaters, office buildings, laundries, shelters, in transportation vehicles, and other locations where people may congregate.

To better understand the problem, HonorGuard educates its customer in the biology and behavior of bed bugs.

  • Bed bugs are small, oval non-flying insects that are roughly the size of an apple seed in their adult form that feed by sucking blood from humans or animals.
  • Bed bugs can live in any area of the home and will harbor in very small cracks in furniture as well as on textiles and upholstered furniture. They tend to be most common in areas where people sleep and generally concentrate in beds, including mattresses, box springs, and bed frames.  It is not uncommon for bed bugs to infest couches, recliners, pull out beds and other furniture.
  • Bed bugs are light sensitive and therefore are most active at night.  They may bite any exposed areas of skin while an individual is sleeping. The face, neck, hands, and arms are common sites for bedbug bites.
  • A bed bug bite is painless and usually it is not noticed in the early stages of an infestation. Small, flat, or raised bumps on the skin are the most common sign; redness, swelling, and itching commonly occur.  Most people have no reaction to a limited number of bites.  Reaction to the bites is primarily a function of sensitivity by an individual.  However, research has shown that repeated bits may cause an increase in the chance of reaction.  Most people are unaware that there is a problem until the infestation has reached at least a moderate level!

The number one question we receive here at HonorGuard is “how did they get here?”  The answer is quite simple.  Bed bugs are world class hitchhikers.  Bed bugs live in any articles of furniture, clothing, or bedding, so they or their eggs may be present in used furniture or clothing.  They spread by crawling and may contaminate multiple rooms in a home or hotel and even in multiple dwellings in apartment buildings. They may also be present in boxes, suitcases, or other goods that are moved from residence to residence or from a hotel to home. Bed bugs can live on clothing from infested homes and may be spread by a person unknowingly wearing infested clothing.

The fear of bed bugs causes most people to declare they will never sleep away from home!  The reality is that most of us travel and a large number of people must stay in hotels or motels on a frequent basis.  While the vast majority of accommodations will never have a bed but problem, HonorGuard Pest Management offers some practical tips that will help to reduce the risk of unknowingly taking these unwelcome guests home.

Each time you check into a hotel or motel, you should turn on every light in the room before making a brief, but careful inspection.  First, peel back the bedding and look to see if you can identify fecal stains (small ink colored spots) on the tufts of the mattress and box springs.  These spots will resemble the stain a fountain pen would create if we dabbed it on the fabric.  Secondly, move the headboard about 2 inches away from the wall, if possible, and use a flashlight to continue looking for bedbugs, cast skins, and dots of blood or feces on the back of the headboard and on the wall behind the headboard.  If the headboard is mounted to the wall or otherwise immovable, shine the flashlight along the edges of the headboard and into available space between the head board, searching for the telltale signs of bedbugs.  Additionally, examine the night stands and headboard for egg cases (very small and semi translucent) in crevices and cracks on or near beds. You should also look at other areas such as under wallpaper, behind picture frames, in couches and other furniture in the room.  Make it a practice to keep suitcases on folding stands and do not use the drawers of chests or dressers to store your clothing.  Hang up folded clothes.  Likewise, do not place laptop cases or other bags on the bed.

Here at HonorGuard Pest Management, our experience is that “signs” of an infestation are found far more often than we find live bed bugs.  It should be noted that while fecal stains and skin casts suggest that bed bugs have been present, these do not confirm that the infestation is still active.  Observing the bed bugs themselves is definitive confirmation that an area is infested.  However, if no fecal stains or cast skins are found in the areas in or around the bed, the chance of a live infestation is greatly reduced.

Utilizing the tips provided by HonorGuard will reduce the risk of bringing bed bugs home.  However, if problems should develop, do not hesitate to call.  Our inspectors are trained to identify bed bug problems and HonorGuard Pest Management is one of the few companies in the area to be certified by Bed Bug Central to manage bed bug infestations.  While bed bug infestations can cause panic and alarm, HonorGuard technicians are well trained and have an excellent record in eliminating bed bug problems wherever they occur.

While this is an alarming issue, do not let the fear of bed bugs alter your Holiday travel plans.  Over 3 million people stay in motel rooms every night and the instances of bed bug infestations are very small in number.  We at HonorGuard travel on a frequent basis for both business and personal travel and we sleep comfortably after performing an inspection and utilizing our tips at reducing our risk.

 

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Good night, Sleep tight, don’t let the bedbugs bite! YIKES!

If you are traveling this summer, it may benefit you and your family to check out the BedBug Registry website. Below is the link to the site where you can enter the information regarding the hotel and city you are staying in.

http://bedbugregistry.com/

A few tips for not bringing the pesky bugs home with you:

1. Check the Bed Bug Registry above

2. Bring a flashlight with you to check out the sheets and mattress. If you see small fecal spots, dried bed bug casings, eggs and possibly bed bugs – these are indications that Bed Bugs are present in the room.

3. Do not lay your suitcase OR laptop on the bed or the chairs in the room. I know of someone that actually had a bedbug climb into the vents on their laptop because it was warm. Needless to say, his spouse was not happy about the visitor that he brought home with him.

4. If you do bring a pesky guest back home with you, call us. We can help!

Published by James Brockman and tagged with: Tags: , , , , , | 4 Comments