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Water attracts pest, so get rid of standing or leaking water around your home.
Today, in our second installment on summer pest prevention, we will discuss water. This should be our primary focus on our preventive deeds.
Water. The lifeblood of our planet. Sustenance for both humans and insects.While we often take the sacred necessity for granted in our daily lives, the insect world is keyed in to our shortcomings, making the most of every careless opportunity we make available to them.
We have an infinite learning opportunity by walking around our property during a rainstorm. What appears calm and tranquil on a sunny day will often rear its ugly head during a downpour.
Filled gutters and plugged downspouts pour torrents of relentless water into our garden beds and lawns. And often times, the water also overflows into our basements and crawl spaces. Add cold water to this equation, and ice backing up under roof shingles is a disaster waiting to happen.
Carpenter ants just love the wet wood buffet you have created under your siding, and did I mention how happy the earwigs and sow bugs are in soaking wet mulch?
The largest problem you can create with this excess water is to attract termites. They consistently look for wet soil as a nesting site, and millions of these eating machines will be extremely grateful for your often unwitting contribution.
I was wrapping up a recent termite treatment, explaining to the owner the importance of properly functioning gutters and downspouts, especially since their own infestation appeared to be centered around a ground pipe carrying the load of half the entire roof’s surface water.
They were confident that all was performing well, as they had their recent $5,000 gutter expenditure to show for it. A nearby garden hose that opened directly into this ground pipe overflowed immediately. Another dismayed homeowner was appalled that a contractor would install a new expensive gutter system into a plugged pipe. Lesson learned.
Another moisture source aiding and abetting those mischievous pests are leaking water faucets. Besides often busting our water bills, the constant dripping brings joy to the always needy, especially in times of dry spells.
Like swimming pools and bird baths, this water acts like a magnet, luring both crawling and flying insects to your abode. Unfortunately, these critters live up their namesake, invading your home, stinging your kids and in general, being pests.
NEXT WEEK: EXTERIOR RODENT PREVENTION TIPS
Henry Fox is the owner of Henry N. Fox Professional Pest Management. You can ask him questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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