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Pest Control: How to Beat the Bugs

Pest Control: How to Beat the Bugs By Miriam Kasdan
HIPhome Columnist
December 31, 1969

Nobody likes pests-especially the non-human kind. The good news is there are several safe, easy ways to control them. Professional exterminators and do-it-yourselfers alike can buy commercial pest control products sure to beat the bugs in no time flat.

Learn about some of the most common pest invaders-and how to control them.

  • Ants. How could something small be such a big problem? Ants enter your home through even the tiniest cracks, and even tried-and-true home remedies don't always do the trick. Part of the problem is that there are so many species of ants, including: Argentine ants, carpenter ants, fire ants, odorous ants, pavement ants, pharaoh ants, and thief ants, to name a few. While some pest control products work for some, they may not work for others.
  • Cockroaches. While it's impressive that they can survive a nuclear fallout, these unsightly pests can wreak havoc on your home. Your home can be an ideal breeding ground, and the dust cockroaches create affects allergies. As with ants, there are a number off different species of cockroaches, and all are very good at hiding. It may be hard to find them on your own. Consider calling in a pest control pro.
  • Flies. Think flies are harmless? Hardly! Flies can carry more than 100 pathogens, including salmonella and e coli. Their life spans vary-from eight days to two months-and there are more than 16 thousand species in North America alone. Swatting them won't help you prevent them, but it may make you feel better in the short term. Consider a more significant pest control product when your swatting arm gets tired.
  • Rodents. Rats and mice are actually very clever, making them difficult to control. They carry a multitude of diseases, so don't let their quick instincts get the best of you. Mouse traps can be somewhat effective, but do you really want to collect the remains? It’s best to call a pest control pro to get rid of them.
  • Termites. When it comes to termites, small steps reap big rewards. Eliminate moisture problems and food sources around your home, and heed the warning signs, such as wood that sounds hollow when tapped, mud tubes, and discarded wings. If you think you've been invaded, act quickly! These little nibblers can ruin your home. Don't take chances; no commercial pest control product can replace a professional exterminator.

About the Author
Miriam Kasdan has been writing and editing marketing and technical materials for almost 20 years and specializes in home improvement features. Miriam earned a B.A. in Sociology from the University of California at Berkeley.

*Before you apply any of the advice described on the Hip-home.com website, you should consider if the advice is safe and suitable for your individual home situation and consult experts as necessary to evaluate the suitability for your circumstances.
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