Guide to Seasonal Pests

Rodents are a seasonal pest in Baton Rouge LA - Dugas Pest Control

We all know that pests are a common problem in Baton Rouge in the spring and summer, but what about the fall and winter? Even though you may not see them as frequently during certain parts of the year, pests are common all year long in Louisiana. Mosquitoes in the summer and rodents in the fall are two of the most common seasonal pest problems, but there are others to worry about as well. With help from the NPMA, the team at Dugas Pest Control is sharing all you need to know about seasonal pests in your community. We hope that this information will help prepare you for pest threats throughout the year.

Fall and Winter Pests in Baton Rouge

With warm and drier conditions predicted in the coming months, ants and roaches may be more active than usual this time of year. With their need for water in order to survive, these two insects in particular will crawl into your home to seek out moisture. There are other pests to keep your eye out for in the fall and winter months, including house mice, spiders, silverfish, and flies.

Winter pests in the South Central United States map
Rodent
Fly
Mosquito
Ant
Cockroach

What Pests are More Common in the Spring and Summer?

Warmer weather in the spring and summer brings about all types of pests. With our warm, moist environment, Louisiana can be a haven for pests this time of year. The most common pests we deal with include:

  1. Termites. Our climate is ideal for termites, who swarm in the spring and are at full force in the summertime. Subterranean termites are especially dangerous this time of year.
  2. Mosquitoes. With the amount of rainfall we get, mosquitoes love warmer temperatures in the spring and summertime.
  3. Stinging Insects. Wasps, bees, and hornets are very active this time of the year. They can build nests near residential areas.
  4. Cockroaches. Heat, moisture, and humidity in the summer months brings about roach activity, especially in more urban areas.
  5. Ants. Certain ant species will forage for food in the warmer months. Rainy weather also drives ants out of their colonies and into homes for shelter.

Pest Seasonality in Louisiana

Due to our climate and weather patterns throughout the year, Baton Rouge residents and business owners experience a lot of pest problems. It’s important to know which pests to keep your eye out for in order to prevent a seasonal pest problem. At Dugas, our residential and commercial exterminators can work with you to ensure you are protected from pests all year long.

How to Prevent Mosquito Breeding Grounds

Breeding grounds for mosquitoes in Baton Rouge LA - Dugas Pest ControlMosquitoes are a big problem for residents in Louisiana. They are most active at dawn and dusk, which is when they are likely to bite people. Female mosquitoes need a blood meal before they reproduce, and will lay eggs in areas with at least a half inch of standing water. If you’ve noticed an influx of mosquitoes in your backyard, you could be unknowingly harboring mosquito breeding grounds. By eliminating these, you are able to avoid a major mosquito problem and keep you and your family safe. The team at Dugas is here to share top tips for preventing mosquito breeding grounds in your property–read on to learn more.

Where do Mosquitoes Breed Outdoors?

Mosquitoes are opportunistic and can make do with a number of conditions. In order to reproduce, however, female mosquitoes require a source of stagnant water in which to lay their eggs. Even during the summer months, there are many things in your yard that could be collecting standing water. Some of the most common mosquito breeding ground hot spots include:

  • Birdbaths
  • Gutters
  • Mud pots
  • Tree stumps and wood piles
  • Children’s play sets
  • Trash cans
  • Old tires
  • Pools & spas

Mosquito breeding ground prevention in Baton Rouge LA - Dugas Pest Control

How to Stop Mosquitoes In Your Yard

If you notice any of the above items are collecting water, quickly dump them out and check on them on a regular basis. You may wish to consider getting covers for certain items as well. In addition to removing areas with standing water in your yard, there are four other ways to make your property less hospitable to mosquitoes:

  1. Install screens on doors and windows to keep mosquitoes outside
  2. Avoid going outdoors at dawn and dusk
  3. Fix water leaks or drainage issues promptly
  4. Keep your lawn and shrubs trimmed and neat

Mosquito Prevention in Baton Rouge

No one wants to deal with mosquitoes in the summertime, especially when you plan to spend your evenings outdoors. If you’ve done all you can to keep mosquitoes away and still are experiencing infestations, contact your local mosquito exterminators at Dugas. We have the tools and resources needed to keep our customers safe from mosquitoes year-round!

Are You Prepared for Mosquito Season?

How to prepare for mosquito season in Baton Rouge LA - Dugas Pest ControlEveryone loves the summertime in Baton Rouge. Warming temperatures means more time spent outdoors. Unfortunately, mosquitoes also love warmer temperatures and infamously put a damper on outdoor activities this time of year. To prevent a mosquito problem ruining your next barbecue or picnic, it’s crucial to learn how to prepare for mosquito season. The mosquito exterminators at Dugas Pest Control are here to help with mosquito prevention tips and tricks. Keep reading to learn how to keep mosquitoes out of your yard this summer!

5 Ways to Prepare for Mosquito Season

There are several ways you can make your home or property less appealing to mosquitoes. Implement the following tips now to hopefully reduce the amount of mosquitoes in your yard this summer:

  • Eliminate all standing water. Get rid of standing water in buckets, flower pots, bird baths, tarps, and more. Mosquitoes use standing water to breed!
  • Install screens on windows and doors. Installing screens on your doors and windows can keep mosquitoes from getting indoors every time you try to get some fresh air.
  • Place fish in ponds and agitate the water. Certain types of fish will feed on mosquito larvae. In addition, adding an agitator will stop mosquitoes from laying eggs in the water.
  • Keep a tidy yard. Regularly maintain your garden and lawn to keep the grass short. Also keep plants and bushes trimmed to prevent mosquito resting spots.
  • Use fans in your outdoor area. Mosquitoes hate wind and are not strong fliers. Use fans to help force them away from your outdoor areas.

Avoiding Mosquitoes When Outside

You don’t want to let mosquitoes ruin your outdoor activities this summer. Whether you have a camping trip planned or a barbecue, there are several things you can do to protect yourself against mosquitoes. In general, try to avoid going outdoors at dusk and dawn. In addition, wear light-colored, long-sleeved shirts and pants. To protect yourself and your family even further, consider applying insect repellent containing DEET. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and consult your pediatrician before use on children.

Seasonal Mosquito Protection

If you’ve done everything you can to keep mosquitoes from inhabiting areas in your yard but still have them, it’s best to contact the team at Dugas. In addition to mosquito repellents, we can help safeguard your property against mosquitoes in the summer. Contact our expert mosquito exterminators today to learn more.

Are Mosquitoes & Ticks Carriers of Coronavirus?

Mosquito bites do not transmit coronavirus. Dugas Pest Control in Baton Rouge LA.The team at Dugas Pest Control knows how distressing things are right now in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. With a dedication to the health and safety of our communities here in Baton Rouge, we are staying up-to-date with all of the new information coming out about the virus on a daily basis. We understand there is a lot of misinformation about the nature of the virus, including how it is spread. We are here to dispel one myth in particular! To date, there is no scientific evidence to suggest that mosquitoes or ticks transmit coronavirus. These insects are vectors for dangerous diseases, but COVID-19 is not one of them. Using information from the CDC, we’ve compiled facts on vector-borne diseases in this post. Keep reading to learn more!

Vector-Borne Diseases vs. COVID-19

Coronavirus is not transmitted by vector pests (including mosquitoes and ticks). Coronavirus is a respiratory virus that is said to pass from person to person, meaning it is extremely contagious. Exposure is often due to droplets from saliva or nasal discharge, typically generated when an infected person sneezes or coughs. Studies show that it can be spread through contaminated surfaces, and it is increasingly considered to be an airborne virus. Mosquito-borne and tick-borne diseases are of an entirely different nature than this current virus. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), “vector-borne diseases are human illnesses caused by parasites, viruses and bacteria that are transmitted by vectors”. COVID-19 is not a parasitic disease.

Diseases from Ticks and Mosquitoes

Although they don’t transmit coronavirus, ticks, fleas, and mosquitoes are vectors for a number of infectious diseases. Vector pests are organisms that transmit diseases to humans through bites. Mosquitoes and ticks are vectors for the following diseases:

  1. Mosquitoes are infamous for transmitting malaria, Zika virus, West Nile virus, chikungunya, yellow fever, and more.
  2. Lyme disease, currently the most common vector-borne disease in the nation, is transmitted by ticks.
  3. When vector pests feeds off a diseased host, they can transmit pathogens that may infect other hosts it subsequently bites. 

Dugas Pest Control Is Here For You

Mosquitoes and ticks may not transmit COVID-19, but they can still be dangerous. As always, it’s important to take caution in the presence of pests and to always enlist the help of a professional exterminator to prevent dangerous insects. During these uncertain times, Dugas Pest Control will continue to provide essential pest control services to our neighbors and customers.

With new information about COVID-19 coming out every hour, we want to encourage our customers to seek more up-to-date info and follow guidelines released by the WHO and the CDC, as well as your state and local public health agencies.

Spring 2020 – Prepare for These Pests

2020 pests to look out for in your Baton Rouge LA home this year - Dugas Pest ControlHindsight may be 20/20, but when it comes to protecting your family and home against pests this year, you can be proactive with the help of Dugas Pest Control.  We are helping homeowners prepare for the 2020 pest season by offering insights into anticipated pest activity.

At Dugas Pest Control, we have examined trends and used our field experiences and company data to determine the following five pest predictions. Along with these predictions, we are offering preventative tips to help you keep your home pest-free in 2020.


Mice

An increase in mice populations over the past several years may be attributed to warmer than usual winters. With warmer weather predicted again for the winter of 2020, mice activity may boom, which is bad news for homeowners. Mice are year-round pests that invade homes looking for two things: food and shelter.

Homeowner Tips: Mice can squeeze through holes the size of a dime. To prevent an infestation,  rodent-proof your home by sealing small cracks and crevices with a silicone-based caulk. Exterior gaps of ¼-inch or larger can be repaired with copper mesh, hardware cloth or metal flashing. Weatherproof gaps under garage doors, door frames, windows, or pipes and cables that penetrate your house.


Stinging Pests

Changing climates cause dramatic effects in the pest world, and with mild winters, experts are seeing more yellow jacket and hornet nests. Female yellow jackets and hornets are able to overwinter in freezing temperatures and will invade homes, structures, and man-made or natural voids. When temperatures rise in spring, stinging insects will surface from their hiding places, ready to start populations earlier in the year.

Homeowner Tips: Since yellow jackets and hornets can overwinter, they may be out and about at the first sign of warm weather. Be on the lookout for stinging pests, utilizing a professional pest control service as soon as you spot activity.


Ticks

With the rise of popular outdoor activities, like hiking and camping, and years of warmer than usual winters, humans and their pets are likely to encounter ticks in 2020. The Lone Star tick, the deer tick or black-legged tick, and the American dog tick are ticks of special interest. Nearly 50,000 cases of human tick-borne diseases such as Lyme Disease,  Ehrlichiosis, and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever were reported in 2018. Pets may also be at risk for some of these diseases.

Homeowner Tips: During the time spent outdoors, wear an EPA-approved insect repellent. It’s also recommended to wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts, and socks, in areas where ticks may be active. During and after outdoor activity, check for ticks on yourself and any family members, including your pets.


Mosquitoes

Mosquitoes thrive in warm weather, and their populations increased in 2019.  If we have another relatively warm, wet winter and spring, we could experience another boom inactivity by late spring and early summer.  Areas of the Mid-Atlantic and Midwest are predicted to have above-average rainfall, while most of the U.S. is predicted to be warmer than average this winter.

Homeowner Tips: The risk of mosquito-borne diseases, such as the Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) can increase with rising populations. To protect yourself and your family, dispose of standing water from your property and always wear an EPA-approved insect repellent when spending time outdoors.


Termites

Termites are the most destructive pests in North America, causing $6 billion in property damage each year.  According to experts, the two main weather factors that affect termite populations are temperature and rainfall. With warmer and wetter weather predicted for spring, the termite swarming season will be ramping up soon.

Homeowner Tips: To deter termites, eliminate earth to wood contact and avoid moisture accumulation near your home or structures’ foundation. Because termites can cause such extensive damage, raising homeowner awareness around the need for proactive protection for their homes is critical to prevent costly repairs.


The experts at Dugas Pest Control agree that a proactive approach is the first step any homeowner can take to prevent pest issues. With these 2020 pest predictions in mind, take time to evaluate your current pest control plan and ensure that you have the protection you need to protect yourself and your family from pests in 2020.

The Easiest Mosquito Control System You’ll Ever Own

Have mosquitoes taken over your backyard?

Are you afraid to spend an evening outdoors grilling and watching a football game for fear of being bitten?

As much as you may try to avoid mosquitoes in your outdoor space, these pests are stubborn and have a way of taking over. Mosquitoes leave behind itchy bites and carry disease such as the sometimes fatal West Nile Virus.

When traditional pest control methods are no longer effective, you need a safe, family friendly mosquito system to rely on.

At Dugas Pest Control, we believe The CoastalMister Mosquito System is hands down the best mosquito control system on the market today. This system automatically sprays a fine mist of pyrethrum-based insect repellent at certain times of the day. The system repels and kills mosquitoes around the yard and gives homeowners the peace of mind that their backyard is safe and comfortable.

What Makes the CoastalMister System the Best?

If you’ve tried repellents that haven’t worked, we can understand that you’ll be skeptical with other types of products. The CoastalMister System is a different type of product, and it has been proven to work. The system has been built by some of the country’s finest entomologists and pest management professionals. The equipment included in the system is of the highest quality, and it can only be installed by licensed professionals, such as Dugas Pest Control. This is how the system sets the standards for perfection.

In addition to the actual construction and mechanism of the CoastalMister System, the best insecticides are used. Dugas Pest Control will determine the right product, formulation and dosage based on your needs. Generally speaking, a pyrethrum-based insect repellent will be used, and these repellents kill adult mosquitoes. The mist that goes off not only targets mosquitoes, but also rids the property of flies and gnats, which are also responsible for drawing in mosquitoes.

Does the System Require a Lot of Maintenance?

We know you’re busy, and the last thing you need is another system to work with. Fortunately, the CoastalMister Mosquito System is maintenance free. The spray duration, frequency and timing are controlled by an electronic mechanism so you never have to worry about a thing! If you do want control, there are four operation modes: fully automatic, manual, remote control and timer function. So, if you want more coverage, you can operate the system from indoors and provide yourself and your guests with additional protection.

The CostalMister will need to be refilled, and this depends on how often the system goes through the repellent. Once your individual usage is calculated, your installer can tell you how often the repellent will need to be refilled. The good news is that you can set the system to spray more repellent in the summer and fall when mosquito numbers are worse, conserving the mists in the winter when the threat of mosquitoes is lower.

Benefits to Choosing the CostalMister System

Louisiana is home to mosquitoes, and if you’ve been struggling with them in your yard, now is the time to take control. The CostalMister System can be installed by a professional from Dugas Pest Control, offering the following benefits:

  • Intuitive operation, as the system is set to the size and layout of your yard

  • Effective pyrethrum repellents that kill and repel mosquitoes, gnats and flies

  • System focuses on the areas where you spend the most time

  • Hands-free, no-fuss operation

  • Nozzle and tubing are hidden for a seamless look

  • Peace of mind that your family is protected from mosquito-borne diseases

  • System starts working immediately from the time of install

The CoastalMister Mosquito System is a wonderful option for families, but it also works well for businesses. As we learn more about the types of diseases that are spread from mosquitoes, it becomes more important for everyone to work together to decrease the mosquito population around our homes and businesses. The CostalMister System removes the threat from the equation and offers the unsurpassed peace of mind that we are doing everything we can to protect the people that matter most.

Interesting Mosquito FAQ

Dugas Pest Control provides mosquito control service in New Orleans and Baton Rouge Louisiana

It’s time to learn about one of our least favorite Louisiana residents – mosquitoes!

Although we look at these pests as nuisances, they are actually quite fascinating and a natural part of our ecosystem. There are over 3,500 species of mosquitoes, and only a couple hundred bite or bother humans. They’ve been on Earth for over 100 million years, and they live just about everywhere. But, as much as mosquitoes do play a role in ecology, we could fare just fine without them.

General Mosquito Questions

Q: How fast can mosquitoes fly?

A: Mosquitoes can fly about 1 to 1.5 miles an hour.

Q: How far do mosquitoes fly?

A: Mosquitoes prefer breeding around the home, and many have limited ranges of 300 feet. Some species travel further, up to 7 miles from their breeding spots. The farthest we’ve seen mosquitoes travel is 100 miles, but this is rare.

Q: How big are mosquitoes?

A: Mosquitoes are small, weighing 2.5 milligrams on average. The largest mosquito species weighs 10 milligrams.

Q: How much blood does a mosquito suck from a human?

A: A mosquito feeds for repletion, generally taking in .001 to .01 millimeters.

Q: Why do mosquitoes feed on blood?

A: Female mosquitoes are the ones that feast on blood because they need it to mature their eggs. The blood itself serves no nourishment or function. Males do not feed on blood.

Q: How long do mosquitoes live?

A: Most adult female mosquitoes live for 2-3 weeks. There are some species that can live up to 6 months, but these ones overwinter in garages and attics.

Mosquitoes’ Role in Our Environment

Q: Do we really need mosquitoes in our ecosystem?

A: Mosquitoes are sources of food, and they pollinate plants. But, if mosquitoes eradicated, chances are high that other species would fill their niche rather well. That said, don’t expect mosquitoes to be going anywhere soon. They have been here since the Cretaceous Period and acclimate well to all temperatures and environments.

Q: Which states have the most mosquitoes?

A: Texas has the most species of mosquitoes while Virginia has the least.

Q: Can mosquitoes survive in cold climates?

A: Yes! When they do survive cold winters, they are hibernating and overwintering eggs. Mosquitoes are found in just about all parts of the world, including cold places like Alaska.

Mosquitoes in Our Homes

Q: How do mosquitoes get into my house?

A: Mosquitoes can get in through any portal, such as a hole in a screen or a gap in the attic. Garages are some of the most popular spots.

Q: How can I avoid getting mosquito bites?

A: Avoid going out during dusk and dawn, wear insect repellent when outdoors and remove standing water from around the home. Since mosquitoes are weak fliers, you can place a fan outside, as well as candles that blow smoke to keep some pests away. Yellow lights are better than incandescent light bulbs as well.

Q: Should I consider a backyard misting system?

A: Misting systems can be highly beneficial at targeting specific places, such as your patio or around the pool, targeting mosquitoes and other small pests. Still, it’s important to take good care of your yard to prevent mosquitoes from breeding; we can’t leave everything up to misting systems.

Q: What types of preventative tools are available?

A: In addition to mosquito misting systems, there are also mosquito traps, ultrasonic devices and bug zappers.

Mosquito Bites

Q: Why does my friend get bit more than I do?

A: There are several theories about why some people get bit more than others. They have to do with the human blood type and odors of the human. It’s believed that mosquitoes are attracted to the type of carbon dioxide that we exhale. When we breathe out, the mosquitoes zoom in and decide if they want to make a meal out of us.

Q: Do mosquitoes transmit AIDS?

A: No.

Q: How should I treat a mosquito bite?

A: Your best bet is to leave the bite alone. You don’t want to keep itching it, otherwise it could lead to infection. There are some effective ways to ease the itch and pain, such as by placing a cold pack on the bite, adding a drop of honey or tea tree oil or applying basil, peppermint or witch hazel.

 

 

 

Signs of a Louisiana Pest Infestation

Louisiana residents have a unique take on wildlife. Since so much of the Louisiana economy relies on natural resources, we take the time to appreciate the naturalistic habitat around us. In fact, it’s not uncommon to see organizations and annual festivals that raise awareness of animals placed on extinction lists in order to draw more attention toward wildlife and preserving its virtue.

That’s why when signs of insects, bugs and small animals are seen around the home, many residents are unsure of whether or not they have an infestation or if it’s just the local, Louisiana wildlife!

Remember, infestations can happen to anyone as the direct source of the problem is that the species – termites, mice, squirrels, rats, ants, mosquitoes – find a place that meets their need for food, shelter and water.

Here are the signs to look for that may indicate a Louisiana pest infestation.

–      Look for damaged window screens, woodwork and fences. Animals and insects find damaged areas as a way of entry into your home or yard.

–      Check your lawn for soft spots and areas of sudden dead grass or plants. This could indicate that small mammals have made a burrow and damaged the root system.

–      Inspect woodwork for holes and burrows. Places to target include wood floors, furniture and windowsills where small insects like beetles and bees make their way through.

–      Nesting animals and insects use shredded materials to build nests. If you find shredded papers and cloth, this could be a sign of nesting material.

–      Inspect crawlspaces or areas near the home the areas for gritty, grainy mud on the walls. In order for termites to travel without direct sunlight on them, they build mud tunnels.

–      Winged insects could signal a termite or ant infestation, so be on the lookout for piles of these winged creatures.

–      If you find suspicious dirt-like residue, pay attention to it. It could be droppings from insects or animals; although animal waste is generally larger and smellier. Waste from bed bugs and roaches can be small and even dusty.

–      Rodents, bed bugs and roaches leave streaks on walls and furniture. Rodent fur leaves oil deposits on walls and furniture. If you notice any strange dirt or oil, take note of its presence and frequency.

–      Be on the lookout for animal or insect parts. Obviously, a mouse running through your kitchen is a surefire sign that you have mice, but wings, casings from insects and dried bugs that look like dust are also just as critical.

Post-Isaac Aftermath for Pests in Louisiana

As Hurricane Isaac slammed into the Louisiana coast as a Category 1 storm at the end of August, we were reminded just how unpredictable life can be. Isaac left behind plenty of rainfall, adding to the existing problem of pests, mosquitoes and West Nile.

West Nile: Already a High Threat

As you may already know, West Nile has reached a peak this year, with hundreds of confirmed cases in the southern states alone. Residents have been encouraged to take preventative measures that include avoiding the hours of dusk and dawn, wearing insect repellent on the skin and clothing and dumping out standing water.

With the rainfall from Isaac, standing water has become an even greater problem. Puddles and ponds of murky water have been left in some of the most unlikely places, and while residents may notice standing water in flower pots, gutters and wheelbarrows, there are many other places that are getting missed. These murky waters are the perfect breeding grounds for mosquitoes and could therefore increase the threat of West Nile, especially as we’re still in the height of the season.

Cleanup Efforts after Isaac

So far this year, there have been 145 cases of West Nile and nine deaths reported in the state of Louisiana. With the high number of mosquitoes, high threat of West Nile and plenty of rainfall from Isaac, there is the potential for swarms of mosquitoes thanks to new breeding areas.

Fortunately, proactive measures from volunteer crews and rescuers to improve flood protection and clean up after Isaac have been effective. Still, there are many areas where standing water sits undetected. As always, health officials remind residents to be proactive by dumping out standing water and being on the outlook for potential mosquito breeding grounds. Some of the larger parishes have professional spray treatments as well to help cut down on these pesky insects. For those who want added protection on their property, a mosquito misting system could prove beneficial, especially after such a rain-heavy storm like Isaac.

September 2012 West Nile Update for Louisiana

As we say goodbye to the summer and approach slightly cooler temps and shorter days in the fall, many wonder where the West Nile virus stands in Louisiana. Is there still a moderate threat? Should residents still be taking preventative measures? Are there still confirmed cases of the virus in Baton Rouge?

The Centers for Disease Control released another West Nile virus update that was updated during the week of September 10. The CDC has updated us with the following information:

–      A total of 2,636 cases across the U.S.
–      118 deaths
–      1,405 neuroinvasive cases
–      1,231 non-neuroinvasive cases
–      Two-thirds of all cases have been reported from Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, Michigan, Oklahoma, South Dakota

For the Baton Rouge area, West Nile poses a unique threat because there are no cold temperatures in the near future that will wipe out mosquito colonies. As long as mosquitoes are a threat, so is West Nile. And this year, it seems as if the virus is back with a vengeance. The virus reached new heights in 2002, but continued to drop over the years. In 2002, there were 328 cases in Louisiana, and this year, there have been 176 reported so far. To put these numbers into perspective, there were only 12 reported cases last year.

Some parishes have also been struggling with getting the proper proactive measures in place. Spraying treatments can be costly and in turn raise taxes, and not all parishes have passed these proposals, especially rural parishes. The good news is that even though this has been one harsh year with the West Nile virus, the number of cases is expected to drop.

West Nile is most commonly seen in the late summer and early fall, and we’re starting to get past that point. While it’s still critical that you take preventative measures – dumping out sources of standing water, wearing mosquito repellent and avoiding dusk and dawn hours – the threat will be subsiding over the next few weeks.