Spring 2018 Louisiana Termite Field Report

Dugas Pest Control provides termite treatment and extermination service in New Orleans and Baton Rouge LouisianaEvery South Louisiana homeowners knows just how destructive termites can be to your home.

But do you know that even if you can’t see signs of these pests, they can still be hard at work chewing through your house – sometimes at the rate of a pound of wood a day!

We spoke to Branch Manager Daniel Hill about what he’s been seeing out in the field, so you can protect your property.

Termite Season is Intense This Year

Because of all the crazy weather we saw this year in South Louisiana – from warm to freezing – termite season will be especially intense.

Daniel says that the season started a little bit later than usual, but just as many colonies will be swarming. That means swarms will appear more frequently, and many colonies will swarm at once. You can think of them as “super swarms.”

The good news is that the season will still end on time, so this short but intense swarming season won’t continue through the summer.

How Far Will Termites go to Destroy YOUR Home?

Daniel has seen some interesting cases this year where termites have completely snuck up on unsuspecting homeowners.

Subterranean termites are named that for a reason – they live underground. Because of this they can sneak up on you and your home.

In one case, an inspection of a customer’s property revealed termites in a tree over 100 feet from the home. Further inspection revealed that they had actually tunneled all the way to the house and started making it their home from underneath. That’s why Daniel recommends a professional inspection – our fearless technicians will crawl through every nook and cranny of your home to ensure termites aren’t sneaking in.

Another customer saw no sign of termites – until they started chewing through the drywall! They had been hard at work without any sign of an infestation.

Termites Eat Like Crazy – and Not Just Wood

Since termites never stop eating, the search for a food source is constant.

But these hungry insects don’t just eat houses, they’ll attack anything with cellulose, including your vegetable garden! Daniel says that some customers have first noticed termites taking advantage of their gardens, before moving on to bigger sources of food on the property.

Other things termites might use as a light snack include trees, fences, mulch, and firewood. That’s why it’s important to keep the foundation of your home clear of anything that termites might use as an appetizer.

Moisture is also important, so keeping leaky hoses, puddles, or anything damp away from the foundation of your house is another way to help deter termites.

Dugas Can Give You Peace of Mind

If you see signs of termites on your Baton Rouge or New Orleans property, or if you just want to know for sure that they aren’t already hard at work, request a free consultation.

Congratulations to Laura Simpson on her recognition as one of 2018’s Influential Women in Business!

President Laura of Dugas Pest Control
Greater Baton Rouge Business Report has announced the 10 Capital Region women who will be celebrated this spring as this year’s Influential Women in Business honorees.

Dugas’ own Laura Simpson is proud to be one of the 2018 honorees!

Look for Laura’s profile in the May 22 issue of Business Report. She will be recognized at the 2018 Influential Women in Business Awards luncheon on June 6th.

Learn more here.

Technician Spotlight: Meet Leslie

pest technicianHow did years working in customer service prepare Leslie Lovett for her role as a pest technician?

Simple: she loves interacting with our clients, treating each one like “somebody I’ve known forever.”

The Power of Listening

Listening is key – Leslie listens to customers to make sure she understands their issues and more importantly, solves their pest problems.

Listening to colleagues has also helped Leslie learn her job – there’s always something new in the world of pests, and her interest in learning and continuous improvement has made almost 3 years with Dugas fly by!

She sees something new every day, whether in the field or from her fellow techs. The ongoing education makes each day a unique experience.

The flexible schedule and time spent outdoors are some of her other favorite parts of the job – working as a pest technician is an active job, perfect for someone with Leslie’s energy.

Reporting from the Field

Some things Leslie has been seeing in the field lately are lots of early mosquitoes. The recent warm weather combined with standing water from all the rain this winter make the perfect breeding ground for these pests.

Another issue is that this year’s cold snap made it hard to get out and maintain your yard, so clearing out gutters, emptying standing water, and other yard work that helps keep mosquitoes at bay may have fallen by the wayside as the cold weather kept folks indoors.

Rats and mice are another issue Leslie has seen a lot of this year. Once again, weather is a major factor, with cold temperatures driving rodents to find a warmer place to live. In extreme cases, rodents can destroy electrical equipment – even in your car! One customer has been fighting an infestation that’s damaged her electrics in her house and car, but Leslie was able to treat the problem and help save the customer’s property.

If you think pest technicians just spray and go away, you’d be wrong. Customer service, continuous improvement, and continuing education are a big part of the job and the reason techs like Leslie make Dugas great!

Laura Simpson Receives Award of Excellence from Louisiana Pest Management Association

President Laura of Dugas Pest Control

Laura Simpson, President of Dugas Pest Control, was presented with the Paul Adams Award of Excellence at the annual banquet of the Louisiana Pest Management Association held in late January. This award, which has only been given to thirteen people since its creation in 1983, is the highest honor the Association can bestow upon a member.

“Laura has done so much for our industry both in Louisiana and nationally through the National Pest Management Association,” said Jeff Porter, Executive Director of LPMA. “She has served the local, state and national organizations with skill and leadership for many years and is a well-deserving honoree.”

Simpson has been the president and primary license holder of Dugas Pest Control since 1996, succeeding her father, Doug MacPherson who purchased the company in 1973. She has been active in the pest control industry for over 35 years, serving as President of both the Louisiana Pest Management Association and the National Pest Management Association.

Dugas Pest Control, a Quality Pro Certified and family-owned company, has been serving South Louisiana for more than 50 years.

Winter Time Means Louisiana Rodents Are Moving Indoors

Dugas Pest Control provides rodent extermination service in New Orleans and Baton Rouge Louisiana

No matter what time of year it may be, rodents are always a nuisance in southern states.

However, the colder months bring a new wave of rodents, especially mice, squirrels, and rats, all looking for cozy homes out of the chilly weather. This can be a big problem for homeowners in southern Louisiana, and it’s never too early in the season to start rodent-proofing your home!

Rodents are not the only wildlife that may want to make a home with you – other animals like raccoons, possums, squirrels, and more may move in. If you think you have more than just a rodent problem, learn about wildlife control and exclusion services.

Why Do Rodents Head Indoors in the Winter?

The most obvious reason that a rodent will search for shelter in the winter is to take advantage of the warmth. But there are a few other reasons as well.

One big one is food!

Your home is full of food that mice, rats, and squirrels can take advantage of during the barren winter months. When there’s nothing for them outside, your kitchen is still well stocked!

Another thing that these creatures are looking for is safety.

They seek out small, hidden places, such as in your crawlspace, inside the walls, and even make nests inside the insulation in your attic or other spaces. They can get through even the tiniest of spaces, so a small crack in the foundation is basically an open door for a mouse family seeking a winter hiding place.

Why Bother Getting Rid of Rodents?

You may wonder why it’s really necessary to get rid of them if you can’t see or hear them, and you aren’t noticing any evidence of them coming into your home.

However, the fact is that even if these rodents are staying in the crawlspace and not entering the home itself, they can still cause problems.

For example, did you know that rodent droppings can irritate allergy symptoms, or that rodent urine can irritate asthma sufferers? Dander from their fur can also cause breathing issues.

Another big problem is that rodents can cause serious damage to your home.

When they make their nests, they chew whatever materials are in their way, and whatever is nearby that can be used for nesting material. They often damage electrical wiring, plumbing, and foundational or insulating materials when they do this.

Finally, rodents typically carry diseases and other pests along with them.

It’s very easy to get lice in your home if there are mice, because mice can carry lice inside. Other diseases and bacteria can be transferred to humans and pets wherever the rodents run around in the house. 

Cats Are Not the Best Deterrent

One thing that we often see is homeowners letting their cats take care of rodent problems more often in the winter. But there are two reasons why this is not the only pest control you should rely on:

  • First, cats can’t always get to the places where rodents are living in your home. Crawlspaces, inside the walls, and tiny nests inside the insulation are not places where most cats can get reach to eradicate the entire nest – and killing just one mouse does not mean the problem is gone. This is the reason that mouse traps are not always the best course of action, as well. Setting enough traps to kill all the mice in an entire nest would take a lot of traps and time.
  • Second, killing rodents could cause your cat to get sick because these creatures carry disease.

The best plan of attack is to bring in the professionals. At Dugas Pest Control, we have years of experience with both eliminating the initial problem, no matter how numerous, and preventing them from getting in again. If the cold weather has brought rodents into your home, contact us today to evict them for good.

Daniel Hill named Branch Manager for New Orleans and Northshore operations

Daniel Hill named Branch Manager for New OrleansWe are pleased to announce that Daniel Hill has been named Branch Manager for Dugas Pest Control’s New Orleans and Northshore operations, serving St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, Orleans and Jefferson parishes.

An award-winning pest management professional, Daniel was nationally recognized as the “most passionate technician” in 2014 by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA). He was also the recipient of a Copesan Technology Committee scholarship.

Daniel served on the board of directors for the Greater Baton Rouge Pest Control Association and  is part of the National Pest Management Association’s Executive Leadership Program (ELP)designed to find and grow future industry leaders. He serves as the Vice State Policy Affairs Representative for Louisiana for the 2018-19 term.

While participating in the ELP, he has met with members of Congress in Washington D.C. to discuss issues that affect the industry with industry leaders from Louisiana.

Beyond work, Daniel has many interests.  He is an avid videographer.  A classical pianist, Daniel has been playing for 23 years and makes all kinds of music in his home studio Watch the Video!.

Daniel loves spending time with my wife of 8 years, Callie and  their two children (Emmy 4, Elijah 6 months) and is very involved with his church.

Dugas Featured in Greater Baton Rouge Business Report

Dugas Featured in Greater Baton Rouge Business Report

Family businesses are a big part of the Baton Rouge community, and we’re proud to be featured in the latest special edition published by the Baton Rouge Business Report.

From the special edition:

“It cannot be overstated what an important role family businesses play in the Baton
Rouge economy. Studies have shown that family-owned businesses rank high in
revenue and employment growth. Why? Most family businesses have a longer term
view of investment. They tend to be more stable than wings of national
corporations, and they inspire more trust and commitment in their employees.
Above all, our local family businesses form the roots of our community. We are
proud to highlight the businesses local families have grown in this special section.”

Are bedbugs hitching a ride into your home?

Dugas Bed Bug control and extermination in Baton Rouge and New OrleansBedbugs have been in the news a lot for the past few years. You may have felt safe here in south Louisiana, but they are showing up in our area, and just a few of these hitch-hiking pests can turn into a full-fledged infestation.

Unlike other pests, bed bugs don’t feed on filth (they feed on you!), so spotlessly clean homes, hotels, and businesses can still have a problem with these small, agile bugs.

Just a few of these tiny pests can quickly multiply, feasting on your family and spreading to unsuspecting guests. Our technicians have been seeing bedbugs at customers’ home in the area – learn how to stop them in their tracks.

Prevent hitch-hikers when traveling

It’s summer, which means vacations, travel, and visiting your friends and family. Unfortunately, this also means that you’re visiting lots of places where bedbugs love to live.

Bedbugs can hitch a ride on your clothes if you sit on upholstered furniture like chairs and couches that are infested. Any public place, like doctor’s offices, malls, or airports can have bedbugs just waiting for a ride to their new home.

Just 1-2 nights at a hotel can put you at risk for bringing home bedbugs. They can easily hide in your luggage, even in the tiniest cracks, as they flatten themselves down to find tiny crevices to rest in during the day.

When staying in a hotel, remember that online bedbug ratings and reviews aren’t the best way to determine whether a hotel is “safe.” Infestations can change from day to day and room to room, plus, there’s no way to ensure these reviews are real.

Before you get comfortable in your home away from home, check for signs of bedbugs:

  • Use the flashlight feature on your phone and take pictures of anything suspicious.
  • Put your luggage in the bathtub until you’re confident your room is safe – there’s nowhere for bedbugs to hide in the tub.
  • Look behind headboards and under beds. Tiny dark spots show where bedbugs have been.
  • Strip the mattress, making sure to check seams where bugs love to hide, again checking for tiny stains.
  • Check behind and inside night stands and dressers, they have cracks that can make a convenient home.
  • Check your sheets in the morning; if bedbugs have been snacking on you during the night there will be tiny blood spots on the sheets.
  • You may also spot cast shells or fecal stains.
  • Any decorative grooves on furniture can provide a good place for bedbugs, even on leather or metal (like around or in screws and grommets).

You can check your home for bedbugs the same way, paying special attention to box springs.

If you think you have bedbugs

There are a lot of treatments that promise to rid your home of bedbugs quickly and easily. The problem is, you may have these pests hiding in places you haven’t looked, or don’t expect them. Treating just a few rooms will cause bedbugs to relocate, regroup, and return.

Dugas Pest Control has comprehensive bedbug treatments to eradicate these pesky bugs and prevent them from spreading through your home. Contact us with your bed bug questions.

Asian Roaches are here in Louisiana

Asian Roaches in LouisianaHave you heard of Asian Roaches? If you haven’t yet…you’re about to!

The reason? Your neighbors are already talking about them.

Of course, no one wants to think about roaches if they don’t have to, but Asian Roaches are a new invasive species in Southern Louisiana, and we’re starting to see them at our customer’s homes.

Here’s what you need to know about this newly-arrived pest. 

How Can I Identify Asian Roaches?

Asian Roaches look almost identical to German Cockroaches. In fact, you might need to use a microscope to tell the difference!

However, they have very different habits and habitats.

Asian Roaches could also be referred to as “garden roaches.” Believe it or not, they would rather live outside. They love moisture, especially leaf litter and mulch. They’re often transferred to your yard in loads or bags of pine or bark mulch.

Asian Roaches are also strong fliers, traveling up to 120 feet on strong wings. They are attracted to light, light colors, and aren’t afraid of people (unlike most roaches who scuttle away when a light comes on). So if you spot one in your house, it’s probably just attracted to your lights.

German cockroaches would prefer to be in your home. They love garbage cans and anything sticky, and they prefer dark places with no people around.

If you think you have Asian Roaches, a pest control expert can tell you for sure.

If Asian Roaches Stay Outside, What’s the Big Deal?

Even though Asian Roaches may not want to move into your home, they can be a real nuisance and even a danger. All roaches can transfer disease, so this is a health concern.

Besides that, Asian Roaches are aggressive and often displace the other kinds of roaches in an area.

Hundreds of thousands have been found in just one acre of land – when Asian cockroaches decide to move into an area, they usually become dominant.

With such a large population, strong wings, and the possibility of disease, these pests are undesirable to say the least, especially if you enjoy spending time outside your home. 

The Good News

Fortunately, Asian cockroaches aren’t as resistant to pesticides as German cockroaches.

However, their outdoor habitat means that traditional roach treatments designed for the interior of your home don’t work well to control them.

Dugas Pest Control is an expert in all types of pest control. If you suspect that you may have Asian roaches, don’t wait until they take over your yard. Call us and one of our expert technicians  will identify what types of cockroaches you have and eliminate them!