By ElRay Roper, Senior Technical Representative, Syngenta Professional Pest Management
With the onset of cooler fall temperatures, many pest problems take a break until next spring. However, other pest problems like rats and mice move indoors instead.
Placing a little more bait or a few extra traps around your accounts will not do what it takes to meet your customers’ expectations for rodent control. Help your customers minimize rodent problems by teaching them to take the following precautions around their homes or businesses:
- Seal cracks and holes on the outside of the structure to help prevent rodents from getting inside. Check areas where utilities and pipes enter the structure. A mouse can fit through a hole the size of a dime, and a rat can enter through a quarter-sized hole.
- Store firewood at least 20 feet away from the building. Mice can make their nests in wood piles and easily gain access to the structure if the pile is nearby. Never stack firewood or other building materials next to the structure.
- Keep storage areas well-organized, and store boxes and other supplies off of the floor. Clutter in closets and storage areas provides ideal nesting sites for rats and mice.
- Repair damaged screens in windows, fix weather stripping around doors and install door sweeps.
Inspect your accounts carefully and look for signs of rodent activity such as droppings, rub marks, urine stains and gnaw marks in warm, dark or quiet areas. Move bait stations and traps along walls or other visible runways as near to the areas of rodent activity as possible. During the winter, you may be able to improve trap catches by using nesting materials such as string, fabric or cotton balls instead of food baits.
When baiting outdoors where bait stations are exposed to damp winter weather, use a wax-based bait, such as Weatherblok® XT rodenticide from Syngenta. Weatherblok XT is formulated to withstand cool, damp conditions without losing efficacy or palatability. It also contains brodifacoum, a single-feeding, anti-coagulant rodenticide that controls even Warfarin- and bromadiolone-resistant mice and rats.
Use these guidelines to be prepared when cold, damp weather arrives and help prevent rodent control failures. For more information about rodent control and Weatherblok XT, visit here.
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