It’s that time again; time for parades, flags, cookouts and fireworks as we celebrate the Fourth of July and our country’s 237th birthday.
As we gather with family and friends for a backyard cookout, fireworks, a trip to the beach or over the weekend take in the Dodgers vs. Giants to watch America’s pastime, we should be thankful to be citizens of this great nation and enjoy the freedoms on which it founded.
As you make plans for your holiday celebrations keep in mind there are a group of insect revelers who want to join in on the fun.
Mr. Little and the pest experts at Western Exterminator have identified the Top Four Fourth of July pests that want to join the party:
|Flies – house, phorid, blow and bottle, and fruit flies – appear whenever someone yells, “it’s time to eat.” Sanitation is the key to reducing flies, as well as identifying breeding sites. Keep food covered during your picnic and use tight-fitting closures for garbage cans;make sure to empty the trash soon after the party. Cleaning up will help curb flies’ attraction to your property.|
|Stinging Insects – Yellowjackets love any sugary or high-carb foods that are included on your cookout menu or in your picnic basket. Yellowjackets build their nests in the ground, in shrubs, trees, buildings, garages, attics and sheds so be careful when searching for the extra lawn chairs or dining tent in the garage or running barefoot during the whiffle ball game.|
|Mosquitoes – Adult mosquitoes are active from dusk to dawn in search of a tasty blood meal and would really like to join you at your Fourth of July fireworks display. Aside from removing any standing water in your backyard, using an over the counter bug spray and wearing long sleeve clothing will help prevent mosquitoes from putting the itch on you.|
|Ants – Ants have a sweet tooth and will gladly feed on many of the foods we enjoy on the Fourth of July including oil, protein foods, fat, and meat. Keep foods covered and clean up spills and food particles following the picnic to eliminate the temptation for these expert food foragers!|
A Final Word on Food Safety
We know pests including flies, ants and rodents are vectors of dangerous food-borne illnesses but you can also help prevent foodborne illnesses before packing the picnic basket or firing up the grill. Remember, you can’t see, smell, or taste harmful bacteria that may cause illness, so keep the following tips in mind:
- Clean — Wash hands and surfaces often.
- Separate — Do not cross-contaminate foods – keep raw meats and fish separate from other foods.
- Cook — Cook food to the proper temperatures.
- Chill — Refrigerate leftovers promptly or discard them.
Have a question about Fourth of July pests? If so, send me an e-mail at AskMrLittle@WesternExterminator.com and I’ll get back to you right away with the information you are looking for.
Until next time, thanks for making Western Exterminator Company “The Final Word in Pest Control®”
Have a pest free day and enjoy your Fourth of July holiday weekend!