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Cankerworm Control Services 101

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Cankerworm control 101

Looking to expand your business offerings? Consider cankerworm control. Cankerworms, also known as inch worms, are a common pest that occurs throughout much of the United States. The pest can be quite destructive. It feeds on the leaves of trees of many types of trees, including:

  • Oak
  • Maple
  • Ash
  • Beech
  • Basswood and more

The pest may cause trees to defoliate. As a result, it places great stress on the tree leading to significant damage. Cankerworms are a nuisance for both home and business owners. Areas with cankerworms infestations are often unpleasant.  In particular they can take over backyards, make an unsightly nuisance and even fall into outdoor eating areas.

Your role as a pest professional can help conserve the beauty and necessity of trees in your service region. At this time let’s take a closer look at getting started in cankerworm control.

Cankerworm control 101 - lifecycle

4 easy tips for getting started in cankerworm control

  1. Tree-banding is the solution!The good news is you do not need to obtain any special licenses to offer tree-banding services for the cankerworm. And adding this service to your repertoire will also help you to get into the Cankerworm business as well.  Not sure how to tree-band?  Fortunately, we have you covered with detailed instructions in our Tree-Banding 101 one-pager. The process is very straightforward and simple.
  2. Cross-market to your current customer base.Simply make your current audience aware of your new business offering. Use your usual marketing channels to notify customers of the threat and your additional service offering. We recommend both monitoring and control service options. Fortunately, tree-banding will allow you to do both.
  3. Protect tree health and preserve the beauty of your community.Get the word out in your service area.  Utilize social media posts, e-mail blasts and dedicated portions of your website to educate the public about the importance of treating for and monitoring for cankerworms. Pictures of the insect as well as the damage they cause can be very effective in your marketing. Our Social Media Resource Library has lots of educational content free for your use.  As a result, you can help educate the public on cankerworms and their control. For example, you could offer your expertise to your community through local newspapers and radio stations.  These organizations are often looking for local experts.
  4. Consider donating your services.Have you noticed cankerworm damage in your service region? Consider treating a small area of trees in a busy part of your community for free in exchange for placement of lawn signs advertising your business.  Lawn signs are a great way to get the word out about your brand and new service offering.

Additional Resources

Learn more about tree-banding with our Catchmaster® TB-1 glue here: https://catchmasterpro.com/product/tree-banding-glue/

Learn more about cankerworms from the University of Maryland here: https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/topics/cankerworm

Bobby Kossowicz is a content creator for the Catchmaster® brand, learn more here: https://catchmasterpro.com/blog/bobby-kossowicz/

 

Rodent Exclusion Tips

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Get Proactive Protection with these Rodent Exclusion Tips for the Fall

The temperatures are getting colder, the leaves are out of the trees and the rodents are heading indoors, but, don’t fret, use these rodent exclusion tips to get ready for the season.

According to PestWorld, mice and other rodents invade an estimated 21 million homes in the United States each winter! Don’t be a part of that staggering statistic. Ensure a pest-free living environment via exclusion work.  Exclusion work can prevent insects and rodents from gaining access to your home.

The importance of rodent exclusion work

Did you know that an adult mouse is able to squeeze through a hole the size of a dime? An afternoon of uncovering and sealing entry points into your home can help you to ensure a pest-free living environment all winter long.

Exclusion work simply means sealing and securing all possible points of entry into a building.  Taking this proactive step can easily reduce and even eliminate pest and rodent activity in the home. Exclusion is cost effective and more efficient in the long run. It reduces the need for chemical pesticides or rodenticides.  The result is a safe alternative for both humans and the environment.

Rodent Exclusion Tips - Home Graphic

In order to be through, begin with an inspection of your home from the inside out.

7 areas to check for rodent exclusion work

  1. Cracks and crevices in the foundation
  2. Improperly sealed vents
  3. Attics
  4. Drain pipes
  5. Door sweeps
  6. Window screens
  7. Garage doors

Caulk works well for tiny gaps, however, for openings two inches or more us copper mesh in order to fill-in holes and entry points.  Because of the mesh, Rodents cannot chew through and gain entry.

Once exclusion is performed remember to monitor indoor areas that cannot be fully sealed with glue boards and trays. Being alerted to a pest or rodent problem early can make the infestation much easier to solve.

Take some time to be pro-active this fall by performing exclusion around your home and enjoy a pest and rodent-free winter.

Bobby Kossowicz is a content creator for the Catchmaster® brand, learn more here: https://catchmasterpro.com/blog/bobby-kossowicz/

Additional resources

Get more rodent tips in your in-box by signing up for our newsletter here: https://catchmasterpro.com/join-email/

Learn more about rodents from the NPMA here: https://www.pestworld.org/news-hub/pest-articles/rodents-101/

CDC Mosquito Control Statistics

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In this update from Captain Stan (aka the Mosquito Man) learn more about some eye-opening CDC mosquito control statistics.

Diseases On The Doorstep:  An Eye-Catching Report From CDC

In May of 2018, our federal Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a report I like to call ‘3X-9-8/10’.  That is NOT a code from a James Bond movie.  What is it then?

3 Startling CDC Mosquito Control Statistics from Vital Signs:

  1. 3X – From 2004-2016, there were an estimated 640,000 cases of disease in humans transmitted by mosquito, tick and flea bites.  This represents a 3X increase!
  2. 9 – Since 2004, 9 new “germs” spread by mosquitoes and ticks have been discovered in or introduced into the United States. An example of the former is Heartland virus; the latter, Zika virus.
  3. 8/10 – About 84% of local vector control agencies in the United States are lacking in at least 1/5 core competencies, and many are lacking in more than 1.

CDC Mosquito Control Statistics - Fun Facts

CDC Mosquito Control Statistics – Central Message

The central message here?  Diseases spread by biting arthropods are clearly on the increase, while our organized ability to detect and control them is sadly lacking.  This points toward a public health calamity.

Captain Stan Cope (aka the Mosquito Man) is our Vice President of Technical Services.  Learn more about Stan here:  https://catchmaster.com/introducing-captain-stan-the-mosquito-man/

Additional Resources

For help with mosquito season 2019 & beyond, discover Catchmaster® mosquito management tools:  https://catchmasterpro.com/product/final-feed-mosquito-bait/

Click here for the CDC May 2018 Vital Signs referenced above: https://www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns/vector-borne/index.html

Finally, learn more about mosquitoes from the NPMA here: https://www.pestworld.org/pest-guide/mosquitoes/

Keeping Your Home & Pumpkins Safe from Pests this Halloween

By | blog, Insects, Rodents, Tips & Inspirations, Trapping Tips, Uncategorized | No Comments

Halloween pest control can help keep your holiday festive.

Halloween Pest Control - Cota

It’s October, a chill is in the air and homeowners are busy decking their halls with spiders, rats and other creepy crawlers in preparation for Halloween.  It is about the only time of the year that pests are an acceptable décor choice around the home.  Holiday displays aside, here are some tips for keeping the real pests at bay this year.

Spiders – better out than in

Did you know that spiders can actually be a beneficial pest, particularly in your garden? Perhaps not the best news if you suffer from arachnophobia. It’s true though, spiders in your garden play a pivotal role in keeping down the number of plant-killing bugs and may also prevent you from being stung while working in your garden. However, very few of us want to share our homes with these creatures.

Spider pest control tips

  1. To keep spiders out of your home, consider performing some exclusion work, filling cracks and crevices, sealing gaps and openings around the home and replacing door sweeps that may no longer provide a strong seal.
  2. Another great line of defense against indoor spiders is your vacuum cleaner. Suck up any visible spiders and be sure to remove cobwebs around your home as well.
  3. Finally, consider monitoring your home for spiders with our glue traps and boards. Place our glue trays or boards in out of the way areas to find what’s really creeping around your home this fall.

Halloween Pest Control - Rat Facts

Halloween Pest Control – Keeping the Rats at Bay

Much like spiders, rats can enter your home through relatively small cracks and holes. Did you know that a rat can squeeze its body through a hole the size of a quarter? There are a couple of actions you can take to keep rats away. First, fill any holes or gaps you find around the perimeter of your home. Second, keep your plumbing in tip top shape. Like many other pests, rats are drawn to moisture and a leaky pipe can be the water source needed.

Beware the Pumpkin Eaters

Lastly, be careful where you place that seasonal pumpkin. Pumpkins are a huge component of Halloween Pest Control.  Pumpkins left outdoors are a great food source for rats, mice and other rodents and will also draw pests to your home particularly as the pumpkin begins to rot.

Pumpkin pest prevention

  1. Display pumpkins in a cool, dry place to prevent mold and rot from setting in early and attract insects.
  2. You can protect your pumpkins with a simple mixture of bleach and water. Simply spray this mixture on a carved pumpkin each day before Halloween for an easy, effective pest management practice to keep fruit flies and other insects at bay.
  3. To avoid your pumpkin serving as a food source for rodents and squirrels in the area, try coating the pumpkin inside and out with hot pepper sauce.

We hope these tips help you to enjoy the Halloween season where the only pests you see are a part of your seasonal décor.

Bobby Kossowicz is a content creator for the Catchmaster® brand, learn more here: https://catchmasterpro.com/blog/bobby-kossowicz/

Additional Halloween Pest Control Resources

Looking for more Halloween pest tips?  Gest some mosquito tips from our own Captain Stan (aka the Mosquito Man) here: https://catchmasterpro.com/blog/halloween-mosquito-prevention/

Learn more about pests at Pest World, the official site of the National Pest Management Association here: http://pestworld.org/

Mosquito Season 2019 – September Update

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In this mosquito season 2019 update, our Captain Stan (aka the Mosquito Man) shares some updates with fall approaching.  Although the season is changing, that doesn’t mean mosquitoes aren’t still a threat.

Is Mosquito Season Winding Down? Don’t be Fooled


The end of summer generally means cooler temperatures, and cooler temperatures mean fewer mosquitos, right?  Well, maybe.  There may be fewer mosquitoes but the disease threat, particularly in 2019, is still significant and all precautions to avoid mosquito bites should be practiced until the first hard freeze in your region.

Examples, you say?  Eastern equine encephalomyelitis, or EEE, has already killed four people in Massachusetts and it has been found in mosquitoes over a wide area of the state (also in some neighboring states).  There have also been several fatal cases in horses in Michigan.  West Nile virus has been very active throughout the country this year and in warmer areas, transmission to humans could continue into October or even November.  Finally, the yellow fever mosquito (Aedes aegypti, responsible for spreading Zika virus, chikungunya, yellow fever and dengue) continues to spread throughout California.

Mosquitoes bite; they want your blood,
And they care not that they aren’t loved;
They’re nature’s scourge, so stay awake;
Protect yourself – make no mistake.

(Ok, I know that I lack an impressive iambic pentameter……)

When not dabbling in poetry, our Captain Stan (aka the Mosquito Man) is our Vice President of Technical Services.  Learn more about Stan here:  https://catchmaster.com/introducing-captain-stan-the-mosquito-man/

Additional Resources

For help with mosquito season 2019 & beyond, discover Catchmaster® mosquito management tools:  https://catchmasterpro.com/product/final-feed-mosquito-bait/

Finally, learn more about mosquitoes from the NPMA here: https://www.pestworld.org/pest-guide/mosquitoes/

How to Spot a Spotted Lanternfly Infestation

By | blog, Insects, spotted lanternfly, Tips & Inspirations, Trapping Tips | No Comments

If you are unfamiliar with the spotted lanternfly, Lycorma delicatula (White) (Hemiptera: Fulgoridae), it’s a good idea to get acquainted with this sap-feeding insect before it’s too late.  Your trees and produce may already be at risk.

Spotted lanternfly background

First spotted in the United States in 2014, the invasive pest was originally discovered in Pennsylvania and has since spread rapidly.  It is known to feed on vines, shrubs, fruit trees, hardwoods, grapevines, and over 70 other species of trees. Infestations are often accidental but can occur seemingly overnight when eggs are transported by landscapers or homeowners doing yardwork. Egg masses and other life stages can also be found on a variety of other outdoor items including vehicles, patio furniture, swing sets, and more. For that reason, it’s very easy for them to spread quickly when humans move anything bearing the eggs.

So, how do you spot an infestation of the spotted lanternfly? The following can help as you check for egg masses on trees and items stored outside.

Identification & Life Cycle

If you hear of an infestation in your area, it’s a good idea to look for eggs all over your property.  They can be anywhere – not just on trees. The spotted lanternfly has one generation every year. Adult females lay eggs in September and continue until early December. Early detection is key as the eggs can survive the winter months and hatch in early spring.

spotted lanternfly eggs

Resembling mud, the pod-like egg masses are usually gray or off-white and will crack and darken over time.

spotted lanternfly nymphs

The eggs hatch in the spring and the nymphs immediately begin feeding. They are recognized as small black nymphs with white spots.

spotted lanternfly instars

The spotted lanternfly completes four life stages, also known as instars, before maturing into adults. The first three instar nymphs are black with white markings while the fourth instar nymphs are reddish-orange with white markings.

spotted lanternfly adults

Mostly seen in late summer and fall, adult nymphs have wings and are about an inch long and a half inch wide. They have gray forewings with black spots and hindwings that can be red, white and black striped.

Tree-Banding for the spotted lanternfly

If you are concerned about populations of the spotted lanternfly in your area, consider working with a pest professional who can perform tree-banding. Tree-banding creates a physical barrier on tree trunks that consist of a wrap and glue. The process allows homeowners to monitor trees proactively for the spotted lanternfly. Click here to learn more.

Additional Resources

Learn more from Penn State University here: https://extension.psu.edu/spotted-lanternfly-management-for-homeowners

Learn more about tree-banding with our Catchmaster® TB-1 glue here: https://catchmasterpro.com/product/tree-banding-glue/

Bobby Kossowicz is a content creator for the Catchmaster® brand, learn more here: https://catchmasterpro.com/blog/bobby-kossowicz/

Meet Bobby Kossowicz

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Bobby Kossowicz is a content creator for the Catchmaster® brand.  Bobby is a marketing professional in the specialty chemicals industry and owner of Environmental Marketing Solutions (EMS), a niche marketing agency servicing specialty product manufacturers, distributors, pest management and service companies. An industry veteran with over two decades of experience marketing pest and turf management products, Bobby brings a wealth of knowledge, experience and contacts to her clients.

Before starting her own marketing firm, Bobby worked as Marketing Communications Manager for a large specialty chemical manufacturer and 10 years as Director of Marketing for a specialty chemical distributor. During these years she also served on a communications team for a national trade association representing manufacturers, formulators, distributors and other industry leaders involved with pesticides that engaged with issues on a federal, state and local levels.

Learn more about Bobby Kossowicz and EMS here: http://getenviromarketing.com/our-team/