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Mosquitoes

Summary of Integrated Mosquito Management in Southern California Schools

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Integrated Mosquito Management – Background

Invasive mosquitoes, especially the Yellow Fever mosquito, Aedes aegypti and the Asian tiger mosquito Aedes albopictus, are spreading rapidly in the United States and California is no exception.  These species prefer to breed in artificial containers such as tires, cans and bottles, children’s toys, plant drainage saucers, clogged gutters – basically, anything that will hold water.  Also, they bite primarily during the daytime so school children are at increased risk.  Not only are they a biting nuisance, but they can also spread serious diseases such as dengue fever, chikungunya, Zika virus and yellow fever.

Integrated Mosquito Management - Fun Facts

Successful Control in Schools Using Integrated Pest Management

In Southern California, school districts deal with large numbers of complaints about mosquitoes.  These complaints come from students, teachers, staff and parents.  With current restrictions on treatments in sensitive areas like schools, hospitals, child-care, etc. the integrated pest management teams were frustrated because they had almost no tools to address these mosquito issues.  The IPM staff were limited to inspecting to remove breeding sites and treating with contact insecticides made from essential oils.

Our installation of Ovi-Catch at the Anaheim Union School District and the Los Angeles Unified School District provided excellent results.  The IPM Technicians were delighted to have “some options” to actually impact the mosquito population and satisfy the concerns of staff, students and parents.  The Ovi-Catch traps were installed in discreet and/or locked areas and had no issues with tampering.  The staff noted less mosquito activity and were very happy with the reduction of mosquito issues.

This success was enhanced with the introduction of Final Feed mosquito spray.  Final Feed improved results and offered a treatment method that lasted for 30 days or more.  One of the major issues in schools is the surrounding properties.  IPM Technicians frequently expressed that they had thoroughly inspected the school properties and removed breeding sources.  However, they have no control over the surrounding properties and standing water located there.  Final Feed provides a method of mitigating mosquitoes moving onto school property from adjacent areas.

The Final Feed applications and Ovi-Catch installations provided vital “leave behind” products that help to mitigate mosquitos that are originating off the property and are making their way onto the campus. “Ovi-Catch and Final Feed are an important part of our mosquito management program.  If you can use these valuable tools, you should” said Rich Kravetz, IPM Technician, Anaheim Union School District.

In general, we are having excellent results.  However, as is the case with most devices and materials, training is key. Results have been strongly supported by the management and staff in the IPM programs who are motivated and very willing to accept training on the proper application of Final Feed and placement of Ovi-Catch.

Information compiled by:

Stanton E. Cope, PhD, VP, Technical Products and Services, AP&G

Past President, American Mosquito Control Association

scope@catchmaster.com  Tel: (551) 689-8073

Jim Shaver, Western Regional Manager, AP&G

jshaver@catchmasterpro.com  Tel: (480) 760-5874

Additional Resources

For help with your upcoming mosquito season, discover Catchmaster® mosquito management tools:  https://catchmasterpro.com/collection/mosquito-management-tools/

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

Discover more efforts in mosquito management with the American Mosquito Control Association here: www.mosquito.org

 

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/

Halloween Mosquito Prevention

By | Insects, Mosquitoes, Trapping Tips | No Comments

Don’t let mosquitoes take a bit out of your fun this year – use these 4 Halloween mosquito prevention tips to enjoy pest-free trick-or-treating!

Ah- Halloween!  The season of gremlins and ghouls is upon us, and costumes and candy rule the day!  However, if your locality has not experienced a heavy freeze, nasty mosquitoes will still be out on Halloween. Here are a few tips from Vampire Captain Stan to minimize your exposure whether you are dispensing candy or seeking it yourself.

Halloween Mosquito Prevention - Mosquito Fun Facts

4 Easy Halloween Mosquito Prevention Tips

  1. If costumes permit, cover as much of your exposed skin as possible. Limit access for the blood-seekers (mosquitoes, not vampires!)
  2. If needed, use a mosquito repellent that has an EPA-registered active ingredient (https://www.cdc.gov/zika/prevention/prevent-mosquito-bites.html)
  3. Mosquitoes love entering houses through open doors. When answering the doorbell, don’t leave the door wide open while giving treats.  Invite the visitors in or go outside with them.  If weather permits, you can set up your candy store outside or in the garage but be sure and protect yourself!
  4. Many kinds of mosquitoes are highly attracted to white light. Consider using yellow ‘bug lights’ or perhaps even super cool Halloween bulbs in your outdoor fixtures.  This will help limit the mosquitoes attracted to your front door as well as to your property.

Happy Haunting and remember:  Safety First!

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/

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

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE)

By | Insects, Mosquitoes, Tips & Inspirations | No Comments

Eastern Equine Encephalitis – History

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE), also known as sleeping sickness, was first recognized in 1831 when 75 horses died in Massachusetts.  The EEE virus was first isolated from horse brain in 1933.  Human cases were recognized in 1938 when 30 children died in the Northeast US.

Geography

Most cases occur in the Eastern US or Gulf Coast states as well as the upper Midwest.  Many cases are associated with hardwood swamps.  The virus is maintained in a mosquito-bird-mosquito cycle.  In the summer and early fall it is transmitted to humans by mosquitoes .  These mosquitoes are referred to as ‘bridge vectors’, as they ‘bridge’ the virus from birds to humans.  The virus cannot be transmitted human to human.

Eastern Equine Encephalitis - Mosquito Fun Facts

Eastern Equine Encephalitis – Impact on Public Health

About 30% of those who get Eastern Equine Encephalitis die, and those who survive have significant neurological impairment.  Those over the age of 50 and under 15 are at increased risk of severe disease, and infection provides life-long immunity.  There is no vaccine for humans.

Clinical illness presents in two forms:

  • A systemic illness, with symptoms much like influenza, that lasts 1-2 weeks with complete recovery
  • An encephalitic (inflammation of the brain) illness with restlessness, anorexia, vomiting, diarrhea, convulsions and coma.

2019 Update

The average number of cases per year is about 7.  However, in 2019 there have already been at least 27 cases in 6 states with 11 deaths (as of October 3rd).  Cases so far by state with deaths in parentheses include Massachusetts – 11 (4), Michigan – 8 (3), Connecticut – 4 (3), Rhode Island – 1 (1), New Jersey – 1, North Carolina – 1.

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/

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

Catchmaster Pestimonial – Diox Pest Control

By | Insects, Mosquitoes, Pestimonials | No Comments

In this Catchmaster Pestimonial we examine how our Ovi-Catch™ Mosquito Trap helped Mike Robertson from Diox Pest Control with sensitive accounts.

mosquitoes at dusk

Ovi-Catch Helped Save This Pest Professional’s Two Largest Accounts

Mike Robertson is owner and CEO of Diox Pest Control. Prior to owning his own firm, Mike spent 17 years in the pest management industry working different aspects of the business from pest management technician to quality assurance manager in California, Washington and Hawaii. Mike recently shared with us his current struggle with controlling mosquitoes in two large resort accounts with sensitive water areas that contained wildlife, prohibiting his ability to use chemicals for control.

“Mosquitoes are a great add-on service offering for pest professionals. They are typically not a part of a general pest control contract and therefore an important and profitable addition for a pest management firm. Two of my current accounts are high-end resorts. Although they were happy with our general pest control, we struggled to get a true reduction in mosquitoes. These clients are located very close to areas where mosquitoes are reported as being infected with Zika & West Nile Virus so it’s beyond being a nuisance, mosquito control here is also about public health protection.”

catchmaster pestimonial

Catchmater Pestimonial: Ovi-Catch Mosquito Trap

“When I learned about Ovi-Catch I liked the concept and and decided to give them a try. After having Ovi-Catch out for two months, the clients are extremely happy with the control we’ve gained over mosquitoes. In just two months, they’ve hardly noticed mosquitoes in otherwise problem areas. I immediately decided to put out more throughout the rest of the property.”

Mike was thrilled with the results, “I’ve caught too many mosquitoes to count.” He went on to explain that his finding is the closer to the proximity of the standing water that you place the unit the higher the number of mosquitoes you’ll see on the glue board. Mike also began placing the units near areas where high mosquito populations were typically reported, usually within 20 feet of a breeding source to get the most control.

ovi-catch mosquito trap

We asked Mike how the units fit into the resort surroundings and he shared: “Besides being very effective, I really like that the buckets blend into the landscape. It’s a different approach to mosquito control. I can see a lot of opportunity with Ovi-Catch in the future and I’m planning to expand this to new properties as an alternative means of mosquito control. Ovi-Catch saved two of my largest accounts, totaling $50-$60k per year. I’m very happy I found this product.”

Additional Resources

Learn more about Ovi-Catch™ Mosquito Trap here: https://catchmasterpro.com/product/ovi-catch-ago-mosquito-trap/

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

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/

Final Feed FAQs

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What questions are customers asking about Final Feed™ Mosquito Bait?

Captain Stan (aka the Mosquito Man) has traveled the US and compiled some Final Feed FAQs from the field.  Check out his update below.

Part of my amazing job at AP&G (Catchmaster®) is to travel around the country, providing classroom and field training on mosquitoes and Catchmaster’s line of mosquito control products.  Various venues have included pest control companies, professional meetings, trade shows, specialized workshops for continuing education credits, zoos and even back rooms at restaurants!  Here are the top three questions that customers ask about Final Feed, the first-ever bait for mosquito control.

Q:  What is the science behind Final Feed?

A:  Both male and female mosquitoes require multiple sugar meals each day for energy and survival.  As a result, they acquire these sugar meals from plants.  Final Feed is a sugar-based bait that is sprayed on non-flowering vegetation, where the mosquitoes ingest it.

Q:  How does Final Feed work?

A:  The active ingredient is microencapsulated garlic, which is contained in a bait matrix.  The exact mode of action is unknown (a Ph.D. thesis in waiting) but after ingestion, the majority of mosquitoes die within 1-2 days.  Also, after ingesting the garlic, female mosquitoes lose their appetite for blood.

Q:  As Final Feed is a sugar-based product, doesn’t it attract other pest insects?

A:  No.  Rigorous scientific testing in the field clearly demonstrates that other insect pests are not attracted by the bait mixture.

We hope you enjoyed these Final Feed FAQs, reach out with your own and check out some additional links below.

Discover Final Feed Mosquito bait here: https://catchmasterpro.com/product/final-feed-mosquito-bait/

Learn more about Captain Stan (aka the Mosquito Man) here: https://catchmaster.com/introducing-captain-stan-the-mosquito-man/

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

2019 Mosquito Season Update

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Chances are the 2019 mosquito season has been extremely wet for you, regardless of which part of the country you are from. As you know, all that rain in spring/early summer plays a huge role in mosquito activity, including mosquito breeding. Yet while those pests are annoying to your friends and neighbors, as a pest management professional, all that rain tapping on the windowpanes should be music to your ears. The mosquito business is growing exponentially every year, which means bigger opportunities for you.

The Mosquito Control Market is Booming for the 2019 Mosquito Season

According to a recent press release issued on MarketWatch.com, there is 8.6%+ growth for Mosquito Control Service with the market size rising to USD 880 million by 2024. In this updated report of market trends, demand spectrum and future prospects were all evaluated over a five year period. It remains evident that pest control services, particularly mosquito control, is essential for commercial, residential, and government. Residential is the main consumer making up about 65.1% of global total sales revenue in 2017. The mosquito control marketing has been on the upswing for a while now as it was named the fastest growing pest segment in 2017 according to Specialty Products Consulting.

Mosquitoes aren’t going anywhere anytime soon! In fact, with record winters warming across the United States, mosquitoes aren’t dying off during cold months as they’ve done in previous years. They are surviving winters by simply hibernating in holes and waiting for warmer weather. Some females even lay their eggs in the fall and the frozen larvae keep until the weather warms up. When they hatch they wreak havoc in the spring before the rainy season begins.

Mosquito Control is Vital to Public Health

Clearly, your role as a pest management professional is not only a lucrative one, but a vital one. Mosquito control is a necessary method to prevent numerous viruses. The more mosquitoes there are, the more likely viruses will spread. Recent weather has caused researchers from Georgia State and Arizona State University to further study the impact of large rainfall amounts caused by such events as hurricanes. They developed a mathematical model to study the transmission of vector-borne infectious diseases in temperate areas of the world, including the southern coastal area of the United States.

Different species are active at different times of the day and at times of the year. For example, research from the above study proved that a heavy rainfall occurring on July 1 results in 70% fewer disease cases than one that occurs on June 1. Warmer weather means viruses incubate faster giving them more time to spread. Additionally, warmer weather makes mosquitoes even hungrier, which is a master recipe for furthering an outbreak. The critical information from this study and others helps public health officials appropriately respond by seeking mosquito control solutions and pest management professionals like you.

Start Growing Your Business for the 2019 Mosquito Season

Mosquito Control services are growing in demand and expected to grow throughout the 2019 mosquito season. Recent weather patterns, concerns over mosquito-borne disease and the media are all playing a role in this pest segments growth. How can a pest professional respond to this opportunity? If you’re not already offering mosquito control services, now is the time to get in the game. Looking to grow your mosquito control services? Find out how to Compete with the Big Boys over on our blog. Learn more about Atlantic Paste & Glue’s mosquito control product line or contact one of our Sales Representatives today.

Learn more about Catchmaster® mosquito management tools here: https://catchmasterpro.com/collection/mosquito-management-tools/

Learn more about mosquitoes from the National Pest Management Association here: https://www.pestworld.org/pest-guide/mosquitoes/

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

Educating Your Customers: The “Aha” Mosquito Moment

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Educating your customers starts with inspection

Captain Stan preaches that a proper inspection, on every visit, is the key to controlling most mosquito problems and provide you with the opportunity for educating your customers.  Be aware that most customers do not associate their mosquito problem with standing water on their property; they only know they are being bitten.

The “3 Ws” of an inspection

If you find mosquito breeding sites on a customer’s property, if possible show the larvae and pupae to the customer, explain what they are, where they are breeding and why.  Educating your customers has three areas.  I like to call them the three Ws:

  1. What you found
  2. Why they are there
  3. What the customer can do to help the situation

The customer may then have an ‘aha’ moment = “oh, is THAT what those are?  I see them all over the property and never knew what they were”.  At that point, make your pitch on what the customer can do to help YOU provide a better mosquito service and you may have a friend for life!

Educating your customers – Professional tip

One other hint – show the mosquitoes to any kids that may live in the house.  Educate them and the next thing you know, you may have some young ‘mosquito detectives’ to help!

Learn more about Captain Stan (aka the Mosquito Man) here: https://catchmaster.com/introducing-captain-stan-the-mosquito-man/

Discover how mosquito control tools from the Catchmaster® brand can help you grow your mosquito control business here: https://catchmasterpro.com/collection/mosquito-management-tools/

Learn more about mosquitoes from the National Pest Management Association here: https://www.pestworld.org/pest-guide/mosquitoes/

 

 

Mosquito Control Services 101

By | Mosquitoes, Uncategorized | No Comments

Mosquito control services are one vertical that many pest control companies have been on fence about offering. That is, until just a few years ago when the recent scare and media flurry over Zika, West Nile Virus, Chikungunya virus and more seems to have changed all of that. Homeowner interest in controlling mosquitoes and other vectors around lawn and gardens is at an all-time high. And a slew of national mosquito control chains have responded!

This has led many local, family-owned pest management firms to decide whether to pursue the vertical or not. Beyond that, small business owners wonder how can they possibly compete with these national chains, who seem to have unlimited marketing dollars and a nationwide presence.

It is possible to successfully compete with the big boys in the world of mosquito services. Here are five ways to own your local market when it comes to mosquito control.

Competing with the Big Boys in the World of Mosquito Control Services

  1. Keep an eye on your competitors. Start by taking a step back and observing what is happening in your marketplace. What marketing tactics are the “big boys” employing? What do their service offerings look like? How are customers reacting? As a small business owner, you can make quicker decisions, change up your offerings and move your marketing dollars around quickly.  As a result, you make be able to really own one marketing channel, like social media, instead of spreading your marketing dollars too thin. While billboards and TV ad campaigns may not be in your marketing budget, you can ensure you’re remaining competitive with the national chains by offering similar services to customers in your territory.
  2. Upsell Your Current Customer Base. You already have a great base of customers who trust your company to protect their home.  Chances are they view you as their pest expert. Ensure that you are making your customer base aware of your other services and up-sell them on mosquito control. Make it easy for customers to simply add-on this extra service to their current contract.  Let them know of this opportunity via email, door drops and having your sales person or technicians make the offering at the time of service. Incentive your sales people or technicians for every home that adds mosquito control onto their contract.
  3. Community Involvement. Go ahead and sponsor that little league baseball team, coach your daughter’s soccer league and get involved in your community. Offer a free mosquito service prior to a community event in turn for publicity. People love to support those they know and those who give back to their community.
  4. Deliver a Great Customer Experience. Customer service is perhaps the best way to stand out from the national chains. Train your employees to go above and beyond when servicing an account. Take the time to consult with homeowners on ways in which they can minimize mosquito activity on their property.  Offer handouts on overlooked mosquito breeding areas. Work closely with customers and respond quickly to complaints to earn that reputation of offering excellent service.
  5. Own the referral. Once you have a happy customer, ask for the referral and train your employees to do the same. Put customer referral programs in place that offer a free or discounted mosquito treatment to anyone your customer refers. Plan a block party and offer a discount to any block in your town that has three or more homes that buy into your mosquito services. Having more homes to service in a small geographical area will help to make your company more efficient and organically get the word out about your services.

Putting it All Together

While offering mosquito control services to compete with the “big boys” can seem daunting remember that you have tools at your disposal.  And the common thread in your tools should be how you differentiate your brand.  No doubt you have had success in differentiating yourself in other areas – mosquito control doesn’t need to be any different.

Mosquito control services are in high demand. Stay top-of-mind with customers in your territory and own your local market for mosquito services. Get started today!

Learn more about how mosquito control tools from the Catchmaster® brand can help you grow your mosquito control business here: https://catchmasterpro.com/collection/mosquito-management-tools/

Learn more about mosquitoes from the National Pest Management Association here: https://www.pestworld.org/pest-guide/mosquitoes/

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