A great example of a hidden nest!

Hidden yellow jacket nestfind the nest 2

Our technician (Steve Antoni) made a great find while servicing one of our customers. Although this was away from the home, Steve saw the yellow jackets flying around and traced them back to this area. This could have easily ended in the homeowner, the landscaper or a pet getting severely stung if it had gone unnoticed and been disturbed by accident. You can see the gray color of the nest sticking through the middle of the ground cover. Great job Steve, job well done!

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Alert: Stinging Insect Nests

yellowjacketsStinging insect nests are dangerous to treat for homeowners especially at this time of the year. The drones are now numerous and they are ready to attack and defend their nest with little to no provoking. Buying a can of spray to try to treat these nests is both dangerous and usually unsuccessful. See the two examples of nests found within homes and you can imagine how many stinging insects were inside. Once one member of the colony stings you, a pheromone is released calling others to defend the nest. Many of these nests are found in shrubs and under ground cover which makes them that more dangerous when disturbed. Please leave the treatment of these insects to the professionals this time of the year. Need our help? Call: 1-800-649-99992.

Huge Nest in attic

Yellow Jacket Nest in Wall

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Looking for a fun project for your kids?

I ran across this great idea from the National Pest Management Association to keep the kids busy and may also help you find conditions that are drawing insect to your home.

IPM Scavenger Hunt

– National Pest Management Association

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

School’s out! Hooray! When my kids were younger, summer was a time for “camp mom.”  I loved coming up with creative adventures and explorations.  I often themed our weeks together…Heritage Week where we explored our Scandinavian ancestors, made delicacies from Norway and Sweden, and read books by authors from “the motherland”…Colonial Week offered candle and butter making, games from the early days, and even an attempt at learning to sew (epic fail!). Of course, any themes focused on the outdoors were always a big success!

I was reminded of my days as the chief creator of fun when Jim Fredericks, one of my colleagues and our staff entomologist, published an IPM Scavenger Hunt for Kids.  IPM, or Integrated Pest Management, is a common sense approach to pest control that starts with the removal of food, water, and shelter that pests find attractive on your property.

Why not liven up a summer afternoon by taking your kids on an IPM Scavenger Hunt!?!   Not only will they have a great time learning about bugs but they will learn how to locate potential pest problems on your property. The adventure can offer teachable moments about the difference between bugs and the pests they become when they enter your home and things children can do to help keep your home pest free!

Here are a few ideas of things to look for to get you started….

  • Ants
  • Ant nests
  • Crickets
  • Spiders
  • Termite mud tubes (Hope you don’t find any of those!)
  • Carpenter ant frass (Look for sawdust like wood shavings with insects parts)
  • Carpenter bee holes (Look for perfectly round ½ diameter holes in wood)
  • Wasp nests (Stay away!)
  • Cracks in foundation walls (Spider entry points!)
  • Holes in screens (Don’t invite the mosquitoes!)
  • Gaps underneath doors (If you can slide a piece of paper under the front door, a spider can crawl through!)
  • Holes larger than a dime (Just big enough to let mice inside!)
  • Leaky rain gutters (Water pooling by your home welcomes a host of pests)
  • Leaky Pipes (Cockroaches love these!)
  • Firewood piled less than 20 feet from the structure (Keep it back to keep rodents and termites at bay)
  • Outdoor trashcans with no lids (Find secure lids or else nuisance wildlife will thank you for easy access!)
  • Tree limbs overhanging the house (Branches that come close to your home offer a pest highway indoors)
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What do you mean this roach isn’t bad?

Every year we have panicked people come in worried sick because they have found a cockroach in the house. Surprisingly enough, there are types of cockroaches that are not a threat to the home. The most popular one around here is a Pennsylvania Woods Roach.

The Woods Roach lives outside usually under the bark of trees or in your mulch or other such areas. They are attracted to light which is how they end up in your home. Woods roaches do not get into our food, breed inside or even live very long indoors. They are considered a nuisance pest and are very rarely sprayed for. When inside you will find this roach walking around out in the open during the day. This is a tip that you have spotted a Woods Roach. Normally a German Cockroach (the kind you do worry about) would only be seen at night and shuns the light, scattering as soon as lights are turned on.

So, please don’t panic! When in doubt, bring a sample of the insect to our office or send us a photo and we will be happy to let you know what you have found. Have an insect problem? Call us today 1-800-649-9992.

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Don’t bring home Bedbugs!

Bed Bug Extermination in ,

PROTECT YOURSELF FROM BEDBUGS WHILE TRAVELING

Before booking a hotel room, you may want to read user reviews of the particular hotel and location — frequently, guests who’ve had bug problems report them online. Bear in mind that a report about one hotel does not mean the issue wasn’t isolated to one room, or that hotel management hasn’t since exterminated.

Stop by our office and pick up some luggage spray. On sale by one get one 1/2 off!

Still concerned? Concerned travelers may want to check their bed for telltale signs of the bugs, a more common practice years ago.  Before jumping into bed, here are a few spot check tips:

  • Peel back the bed sheets and check the mattress, running your fingers along the upper and lower seams. Make sure to check the mattress tag; bed bugs often hide there.
  • Experts recommend removing and examining the headboard if possible. Check for tiny black spots (excrement) that are smaller than poppy seeds. You may also see translucent light brown skins or, in the case of an infestation— live bugs.
  • Check the bedside table. Look for signs of bed bugs in the drawers and along the wall on the side of the bed that is less likely to be disturbed by cleaning staff and guests.
  • You may want to elevate suitcases and keep them off the floor, like on a luggage stand.
  • If you see powder in the drawers or on the headboard, it is likely that the room has already been treated for bed bugs by an exterminator.
  • If bed bugs are detected, travelers should request another room. Be sure to inform hotel management.
  • Just moving to a different room may not be the total answer. You should repeat the thorough inspection of any new or different room you are offered.
  • When you pack to leave, inspect your luggage carefully first, and inspect every item as you pack to help detect any bugs or their signs. Laundering most cloth items with typical hot water and detergent followed by drying on low heat for at least 20 minutes (or standard dry cleaning) should kill all bed bugs in or on such items. Sealing freshly laundered items inside a plastic bag should help keep any more bed bugs from getting in those items later to hide (and be carried back with you).

Call Ford’s Hometown Services with all of you pest and lawn care needs. 1-800-649-9992

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Don’t Let your Next Outdoor Function Bite!

 

 

The mosquitoes and ticks are hungry for your blood. With these blood-thirsty critters buzzing around and lurking in the lawn, it makes it very difficult to enjoy your yard . Now is the time to protect Your Family & Pets from Ticks and Mosquitoes.

 Enjoy These Outdoor Activities Itch and Worry Free:

Cookouts,—  Pool Parties, Weddings, Graduations,— Game of Horseshoes,—  Back Yard Celebrations,  Relaxing on your Hammock, Doing Yard Work, Playing With Your Pets, Tending to Your Garden, Playing on Swing sets/Sandboxes

REMEMBER: 1 in 4 Deer Ticks Carry Lyme Disease, Mosquitoes Carry EEE Virus, West Nile Virus, Zika Virus and Infect your dogs with Heartworm.

We Offer Both Chemical And All Organic Options

For more information and a free quote call:  1-800-649-9992 Ext# 172.

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How do you like our new sign?

New FHS Sign

We have added a new sign to the roof of our warehouse. How do you like it?

549 Grove Street, Worcester MA 01605 1-800-649-9992

 

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Carpenter Ants

Pest of the month carpenter ants

Carpenter Ants

Carpenter ants can be black or combination of red and black or red and brown. Workers vary in size and can range from ¼ to ½ inch and the queens range from ½ to 5/8 inch. These ants are an important part of recycling and composting wood in their natural setting, but are destructive and unsettling when they invade our homes and businesses. Most carpenter ant queens start a nest in decayed or water-damaged wood that is softened by fungus. Normally, we find a major nest containing thousands of ants and smaller satellite colonies containing fewer ants. These satellite colonies can be found anywhere. Our Vice-President tracked a nest that was in a metal curtain rod in a customer’s home. Another common area these ants will invade is a hollow-core door, the nest found here usually stays active during winter and is easily found. The presence of winged ants (a swarming) indicates a mature colony close by. A colony needs to be at least 2 years old before winged reproductive ants are produced. Finding one or two ants inside does not warrant immediate treatment, but should be investigated and monitored by the homeowner. Oftentimes homeowners do not know they have a carpenter ant problem until they are doing construction or performing maintenance on the home.

What we can do to help

Our Pest Management Professionals are experts in eradicating carpenter ants. They will ask questions to try to deduce where the ants may have set up the primary nest. Their questions may include: Have you had any water leaks or water problems in general? How many ants do you see and in what area do you see them the most? Do you see ants every spring or do you see any with wings? Our professional will also look for conducive conditions such as mulch up against the foundation, excessive leaf litter, woodpiles and scrap wood, bushes and trees which touch the home and any earth-to-wood contact. If ants are seen, the technician may put carpenter ant bait down in addition to a foundation spray. The ants will pick up this “food” and head back to the nest to feed the queen and the young. These clues will hopefully lead to where the problem is and the discovery of where the nesting sites are. The methods and materials used to treat carpenter ants work in such a way that even if the nest cannot be located, enough of the workers come into contact with the material and strategically placed baits that full eradication can still be achieved.

Carpenter Ant Fact

  • Carpenter ants can go without food for six (6) months, but will eat each other to survive.
  • Many nests are found in trees outdoors. They will normally attack a dead limb first but can eventually weaken the tree and large limbs.
  • Carpenter ants are nocturnal but workers may be seen during daytime.
  • Carpenter ants wake up in the springtime and are found in kitchens and bathrooms looking for food and water. Once the flowers are blooming outside, the ants will forage outside for honeydew and other insects. Most homeowners think the ants have “gone away” but this is not the case. The annual emergence of ants indicates a nest in the home.
  • Carpenter ants do not eat wood for food; they excavate it to raise their young inside. You will find sawdust outside of a nest because the ants keep it neat and tidy.
  • Carpenter ants can be found walking across above ground wires and into your attic.
  • After treatment for carpenter ants it is common to still see ants for 3-4 weeks.
  • Ants in a nest can sometimes be heard chewing away at the wood in your wall. It sounds like the crinkling of cellophane or “Rice Krispies”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Carpenter Ant Damage

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Are Bats Driving you, well, Batty?

                               Ford's-BATS 144x47   Your Environmental Pest and Turf Professionals

Are Nuisance Bats and Birds Driving You, Well, Batty? Are bats the latest unwelcome visitor in your home or office building? Are bat and bird droppings causing you to worry about your health, your kids’ health, even your pets’ health? Are these bats and birds damaging your property?

Bird and Bat Droppings: Health Hazards Waiting to Happen. You’re right to be concerned about the problems caused by bird and bat droppings. Besides the unsightly mess, droppings cause property damage and pose health risks. Pigeon and bat droppings contain uric acid. This acid eats into the surface it drops on. Painted surfaces, canvas awnings, signs, and other similar materials are most likely to be affected. Dried droppings contain many fungal and viral diseases that pose health risks as well (think of your kids and pets playing in the backyard). Histoplasmosis, encephalitis, meningitis, and salmonella are just a few of the common viral and bacterial diseases that have been associated with bird droppings.

Ford’s to the Rescue: Safe and Effective Bird and Bat Removal When You Need It Most. At Ford’s Hometown Services, we tailor a bird or bat exclusion program to meet your specific needs. We always use the latest and most effective humane bird and bat removal methods—methods that work for your home or office building over the long term.

From a few birds and bats to large habitations, we have the expertise to capture and exclude birds, bats, and other wildlife nuisances from homes and commercial buildings.

Call us at 800-649-9992 when you first see signs of trouble.

Ford’s Hometown Services…The Best in Pest Control and Lawn Care for Over Sixty Years.

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Are you traveling anytime soon? Better stop by our office and pick up some travel spray!

SALE ON OUR BEDBUG TRAVEL SPRAY . BUY 3OZ CAN $6.50 & GET THE 2ND 1/2 OFF!

                       Going on Vacation this summer?

                  Before you enter a rental home or hotel room,

           ALWAYS protect your belongings and your luggage 1st !

Bringing them back home with you is only the beginning of your nightmare.

                   So please don’t leave home without it!

                     BED BUG REPELLENT is a MUST

Call Ford’s Hometown Services with all of you pest and lawn care needs. 1-800-649-9992

Hours: Mon-Friday 8am-5pm and Saturdays 9am-1pm

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