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.

Mosquito Control: It’s Not Just a Backyard Problem

Dugas Pest Control provides mosquito control service in New Orleans and Baton Rouge Louisiana Living in Louisiana, you’re used to seeing mosquitoes cross your path. Yet this year, state and health officials are urging residents to be on guard due to the increased risk of infected mosquitoes. The West Nile virus is carried by mosquitoes and spread to humans when they are bitten.

There has been an increasing number of West Nile cases reported across the country, Louisiana included. Protecting your home and your family is the first step to preventing the West Nile virus, but the community must take an active role as well.

Working Together as a Community

The first step in working toward a solution for mosquito control is to see if there is already a group organized for your community; many neighborhoods already have a mosquito control plan in place. Here, residents can participate in the control efforts and make a difference in their community. These efforts include hiring a professional pest control company such as Dugas Pest Control and notifying local residents of what they should be doing to prevent the breeding of mosquitoes. When everyone is informed, neighbors can do their part to remove standing water while the community can schedule regular spraying from a professional company. When individual neighbors and the community come together, the best defense in preventing the spread of West Nile is formed.

Hiring a professional pest control company is helpful because they can target an area at large, identify potential breeding grounds and ensure that future infestations are avoided. It can also help to have a professional survey the area so that there is a neutral party instructing neighbors of what to do to avoid the spread of West Nile. After all, if one neighbor has a standing water in their backyard, the whole neighborhood will experience a mosquito infestation. Prevention is a community effort, and it requires everyone to work together for one solution. Notifying neighbors of what they can be doing in their own backyards – dumping out standing water, tightening screens on doors and windows and perhaps investing in a misting system – is an effective strategy for making sure that everyone is doing their part and has the correct information at hand.

Mosquito Control Beyond the Backyard

Dugas Pest Control provides mosquito control service in New Orleans and Baton Rouge Louisiana Pest control companies are also urging residents to protect themselves anytime they are outdoors, not just in their backyards. People are often diligent about protecting themselves near their own homes because that’s when they tend to be outdoors the longest, but it’s important to take the same precautions any time you head outside. Mosquitoes are everywhere – not just your backyard.

That is why health officials are stepping up, spraying parks, hiking trails and other public places in an effort to reduce mosquito infestations. Even though mosquitoes are a nationwide problem, working together is the most effective way to fight the heightened threat of West Nile.

Why Mosquito Misting Systems are so Popular

If you’re tired of drenching yourself in insect repellent just to keep the mosquitoes at bay, it’s time to reconsider your pest control tactics. Mosquito misting systems are excellent options for home and business owners who are dealing with mosquito problems, a common occurrence in Louisiana. These systems are designed to spray pesticides in a fine mist and are mounted around the perimeter of a home, fence or building. Misting systems can be turned on using a remote, a switch or a timer to meet the needs of its environment.

Are Mosquito Misting Systems Safe?

Mosquito misting systems are certainly a brilliant idea, considering they’re effective and do the work for you to rid the area of mosquitoes. However, there have been some concerns over the safety of these systems since they release insecticides. The good news is that these insecticides are low-risk for residential and business use and include agents such as permethrin and pyrethrins found in insect repellent products.

The EPA has assessed the health and environmental effects of misting systems and believes them to be safe for both. With the small amount of insecticide used and the short time they are released into the environment, the EPA considers misting systems to be low risk for both humans and pets.

Advantages to Choosing a Misting System

There are many wonderful advantages to having a mosquito misting system. These systems are reliable and effective and focus on the areas where you spend most of the time. With misters, the environment is controlled instead of the person, and it’s a nice perk not to have to spray yourself in insect repellents to keep the bugs away. Unlike other pesticides, misting systems are safe for people, pets and the environment, especially as the insecticides break down easily and won’t cause a lasting effect like other pesticides that can linger on plants and grass.

Mosquito mister systems are easy to maintain, and once they are properly installed, they can be turned on using a remote or timer. All parts and components are built for outdoor use and feature a rugged construction. These completely independent machines take the hassle out of having to mosquito-proof the backyard using bug sprays, citronella candles and pesticides of your own.

If you’re not sure which type of mosquito misting system to use, put your trust in the CoastalMister System exclusively offered by Dugas Pest Control. This system uses advanced misting technology to remove mosquitoes and other insects from the space. It relies on the natural insecticide Pyrethrum to repel bugs and can be controlled manually, with a remote or by setting a timer. You can’t ask for any better way to protect your home or business and bring comfort to those around you than by using a misting system.

Smart Tips for Avoiding the West Nile Virus

Many of us don’t imagine getting the West Nile virus, especially because mosquitoes are are a regular part of living in the south. However, there are effective ways to protect yourself and your family, and everyone should be doing their part. Just as you would wash your hands and cover your mouth to prevent the spread of germs while having a cold, there are preventative measures you can take to avoid the West Nile virus. While the best thing to do is try to avoid getting bit altogether, we know this can be extremely difficult in the south, and it takes more diligence than just spraying on your favorite bug spray. Let’s take a look at the best way to prevent these itchy bug bites and your risk of the West Nile virus.

The Correct Use of Insect Repellents

Any time you step outdoors, you run the risk of getting bitten by a mosquito. If you’re going to be outside for any length of time, apply insect repellent to the exposed skin and spray your clothes with an EPA-registered repellent. Most EPA-registered repellents have an agent called permethrin in them that prevent mosquitoes from biting through the clothing. However, you should never place these repellents directly on the skin. Also never spray repellent underneath your clothes. When choosing bug sprays, don’t think that just because the spray has a higher percentage of the active ingredient means that it’s stronger. Instead, it means that the repellent will last longer. With this in mind, select a product that will provide you with enough protection for the time you’ll be outdoors. If the weather is cool enough, wear long sleeves or pants, and always place bug nets on infant carriers and strollers. Dawn, dusk and early evening are when mosquitoes bite the most, so exercise extra caution when out during these times.

Preventing the Spread of Mosquitoes

Not only should you avoid getting bit by a mosquito, but also you should prevent mosquitoes from breeding. Since mosquitoes like standing water, draining sources that collect water will prevent them from laying eggs. Look for standing water in flower pots, buckets, barrels, cans, water dishes, bird baths and swimming pools. Clean out clogged gutters and remove items lying in the yard that could collect water, such as old tires or wood logs. Even trash items that blow under your bushes can collect water, so do a regular sweep of the yard and look for recyclable containers and plastic bags that may have blown over from a neighbor’s yard.

Place Tight Fitting Screens on Windows and Doors

You may be careful to avoid mosquito bites when you’re outdoors, but we often forget about bug control when we’re indoors. Be sure that you have well-fitted screens on both your doors and windows. These tiny insects can easily get through screens that have holes or are loosely positioned onto doors and windows, coming into the home and serving as a potential threat for West Nile. Having adequate screens also provides additional perks, such as keeping dirt and standing water out of the windows. If you feel that your mosquito problem is severe, don’t hesitate to call a professional pest control company. Dugas Pest Control has their own unique mosquito control system that will rid these stubborn insects from your work or outdoor space – for good.

Image c/o: umaa.org

West Nile Problems in Baton Rouge

Louisiana residents joke about the prevalence of mosquitoes in the area by saying that the state bird IS the mosquito. This year has been especially challenging with the increase in mosquitoes and the virus they carry – West Nile.

2012 Stats for West Nile

Just this week, officials in the Baton Rouge area alerted neighborhoods to take extra precautions from being bit by mosquitoes because of the prevalence of West Nile. Research has indicated that the infection rate for mosquitoes is 11.1 percent for every 1,000 mosquitoes tested. That is almost twice the number that has been found in the past, and even those numbers resulted in human cases of the West Nile virus.

So far, there have been 53 cases of West Nile in the state of Louisiana, and positive samples of the virus have been found throughout the parishes. Officials have been placing mosquito traps in the Baton Rouge area to trap mosquitoes and test them for the virus. There is growing concern over encephalitis – swelling of the brain – which has been found to be part of the virus in some of the mosquitoes tested.

Concerns for Hunting Season

As always, health officials are most concerned about the very old and the very young, but the entire population is of concern at the immediate time. Not only has there been more West Nile activity this year compared to the last three to five years, but also the next three months are the peak of the season. With hunting season around the corner, this is also a concern over West Nile cases that will occur during the fall. With hunters spending long days outdoors and around trees and animals, the number of West Nile cases could spike.

Local Efforts to Prevent West Nile

Thankfully, 90 percent of West Nile cases are asymptomatic, which means you carry the virus but have no symptoms. In about 10 percent of cases, the person will develop a fever; those who are over 65 years of age are of greatest concern because they are at a higher risk for complications.

To protect yourself against the virus, Louisiana officials urge all residents to look for standing water around their home and eliminate it – regularly. That means dumping out water that sits in flower pots, buckets, swimming pools and bird baths.

Working with a pest control company like Dugas Pest Control can get your home safe from these pesky insects so you don’t have to worry. It’s important to choose a local company that understands the unique environment of the south and how these damp and wet conditions can provide mosquitoes with the perfect grounds for breeding. You can also expect to see the Baton Rouge area stepping up in its own precautionary efforts, spraying each day to control these pesky pests.

Image c/o: wellhome.com

Top 10 reasons to get rid of mosquitoes using the Coastal Mosquito System

We might joke about mosquitoes being the state bird of Louisiana, but if you have a mosquito problem around your home or business it is no laughing matter.  Mosquitoes not only annoy us, but also spread potentially serious diseases even here locally in the Baton Rouge / southern Louisiana area.

If you have grown tired of poor results from mosquito control products that are “do it yourself” or purchased from a big box store, we’d like to suggest you take a closer look at the CoastalMister System™.  In fact, we even came up with a “Top 10” list of reasons this product beats any you’ve seen before.

 Top 10 Reasons to Consider the CoastalMister™ System for Mosquito Control:

  1. Health: Mosquito-borne diseases like Malaria, Yellow Fever, West Nile Virus, Gengue, and Encephalitis all pose a serious health threat. Protect you and your family against the risk today.
  2. Safety: Pyrethrum is a natural insecticide extracted from Chrysanthemum flowers; it is EPA registered, and leaves no residue. We are Eco-friendly and safe to the environment.
  3. Effective: The system kills mosquitoes, flies, and gnats. It works and it works well.
  4. Comfort: Your family, clients, and workers can once again enjoy the outdoors.
  5. Adaptability: The system can be designed to fit the needs of the most unique landscapes and outdoor areas.
  6. Convenience: The system has four operation modes giving you total control or hands-free operation. With four speeds; Automatic, manual, remote control and timer (optional).
  7. Low Cost: Pyrethrum concentrates are highly diluted and will provide months of protection.
  8. Guaranteed: Your satisfaction is guaranteed with a one year warranty.
  9. Experienced technical support: Available for installation and maintenance support.
  10. Customized: The CoastalMister System™ option gives you the flexibility to choose according to your needs and budget. Our skilled technicians are ready to help you better protect your home or business.

So why not try it today? We provide pest control services for communities in the following parishes: East Baton Rouge, St. Landry, Pointe Coupee, West Feliciana, East Feliciana, West Baton Rouge, St. Helena, Livingston, Ascension, St. James, St. John, St. Charles, Assumption, Iberville, Jefferson, Lafourche and Tangipahoa and hope to serve in neighboring areas soon.

If you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact us online or give us a call today to schedule your free inspection and estimate.