Interesting Behaviors of Termites

There are over 2000 species of termites in the world.  Besides us knowing that they cause millions and even billions of damages to buildings every year, they exhibit behaviors not many people know of.

(i) Some species of termites such as Macrotermes and Cubitermes native to Australia and Africa are talented architects, for they can build mounds as their habitats at towering heights between 15 and 17 feet or as tall as a two-story house.

(ii) These blind insects use vibrations to locate their food, and they bang their heads to communicate with one another.  Sometimes termites bang their heads against a hard surface as a warning signal of a threat to their nest.

(iii) Adult termites have wings and they mate during their flights.  Once they have found a suitable place to build their family home, they’ll break their own wings to settle down and live happily ever after.

(iv) Termites feed on each other’s poop in order to grow symbiotic protozoa and bacteria in their body to help them digest the hard wood material they have gulped.

(v) Termites are hygienic insects.  They groom with their buddy mates regularly to keep one another clean, as hygiene is vital to their survival.

Having termite problem?  Call AntiPest today at 03-8023 1888 for professional termite control solution.

References:
http://animals.mom.me/odd-habits-termites-8533.html 
https://www.thoughtco.com/fascinating-facts-about-termites-1968587
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How Do Rats Transmit Diseases?

Our world is surrounded by countless of rats and their numbers are rapidly growing every day.  Their presence must not be ignored, for they pose a greater health risk to our community than you can ever imagine.

These odious little rodents can transmit over 35 types of disease such as leptospirosis, salmonellosis, tularemia, Haverhill fever, and black death.  Not only can these lethal diseases affect humans, they can infect animals as well.

The transmission channels of rat diseases:

  • Through rat bites.
  • Ingestion of food and water contaminated with rat saliva, hair, excrement, and urine.
  • Direct contact with and handling of infected rats.
  • Inhalation of dust contaminated with rat feces and urine.
  • Indirect transmission by fleas, mites and ticks that live on infected rats.

Proper and professional rat control must be exercised in order to stop the outbreak of rat infestation and diseases before the situations get worse and threaten the precious lives of you and your loved ones.

Having rat problem?  Contact AntiPest today at 03-8023 1888 for our expertise and professional rat control solutions.

Reference:

http://healthywa.wa.gov.au/Articles/N_R/Protect-your-health-keep-rats-under-control
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How to “Extinguish” Fire Ants

Fire ants are a major nuisance to both humans and animals.  Not only do they inflict one of the most painful stings in flesh, the pain is highly intolerable and seemingly everlasting; well, once bitten, some people will have to suffer the burning “sensation” for weeks.

There are some ways you can use to minimize your fire ant problem or hopefully eliminate them for good.

(i) Give these fire buggers a hot bath

Pour hot water directly onto the mound (their colony), this is the most straightforward method.  You will have to do this 3 to 4 times, with each application requiring 3 or 4 gallons of hot water.  Be careful when using this approach, for hot water can kill the grass and injure your skin.

(ii) Bucket them

First, you’ll have to identify their nest.  Once you’ve spotted it, dig up the mound swiftly and dump it into a bucket.  Cover the mound with some baby powder or cornstarch in the bucket to prevent the fire ants from climbing out.  Lastly, fill the bucket with water mixed with some dish soap to drown them; the purpose of the dish soap is to break the surface tension so that the ants can be drowned faster.  Anyway, you will have to leave your handiwork overnight to see the result.

(iii) Dry them up with diatomite

This miracle earth known as diatomaceous earth can dehydrate the fire ants and consequently bring about their demise.  This approach is not so practical because, if you simply pour the earth onto them, they can escape.  The only way is to bag them up and fill the bag with this earth.

(iv) Use steam injectors.  Like hot water, they can destroy grass and shrubbery.

(v) Enlist the help of a professional pest controller.

Having ant problem?  Contact AntiPest today at 03-8023 1888 for your pest control solution.

References:
https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/home/gardening/a20705655/how-to-get-rid-of-fire-ants/
http://www.sbs.utexas.edu/fireant/The%20Drip%20Line.html
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Why Do Mosquitoes Bite You?

Have you ever wondered why sometimes you are easily susceptible to mosquito bites?  The general consensus is that mosquitoes are attracted to individuals who are “sweeter”, but what causes you to emit the sweet scents that are perfume to these skeeters?  Let’s find out if you want to avoid the itchy bumps on your skin.

There are 5 types of human scent that will make mosquitoes come to you: Blood, lactic acid, carbon dioxide, secretions, and body odor.

(i) Mosquitoes have preferences for humans with different blood types.  People with Type O blood have 83% higher chance of getting visits from your unexpected guests.  However, mosquitoes have the least interest in Type A blood.  Accept your fate, you can’t change your blood type.

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(ii) Your skin emits lactic acid when you exercise a lot and when you eat certain kinds of food such as fish, confectionery, salads, pickled vegetables, dairy products, etc.  The higher the lactic acid in your body, the higher the chance of you becoming mosquitoes’ target.  To reduce the lactic acid production, wash your body with soap and towel your body dry.

(iii) The carbon dioxide we exhale attracts these pesky insects.  Adults exhale more carbon dioxide compared to children, this is why the former are more likely to be bitten by mosquitoes compared to the latter.  Pregnant women, in particular, are the prime targets of these skeeters because they exhale a lot more carbon dioxide.

(iv) About 80% of humans secrete antigens and saccharides through their skin and these compounds are attractions for mosquitoes.  There’s nothing we can do about this.

(v) Your body sweat combined with bacteria produce a sweet odor that mosquitoes can’t resist; without bacteria, our sweat would be odorless.  Beware that some fragrances and perfumed products can also attract mosquitoes.

(vi) Alcohol consumption can raise the temperature of your body making you a likely target, because mosquitoes are easily drawn to body heat.

Having mosquito problem?  Contact AntiPest today at 03-8023 1888 for our expertise and professional pest control solution.

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Disturbing Facts About Rats

Rats are one of the “amazing” pests and you will agree to this when you find out the following little-known facts about them; some of these facts, however, can be pretty disturbing.

(i) Rats love to bite humans when they are asleep. They especially like to go after humans who have been bitten by rats before; this is as if you have been marked after first bite to “facilitate” future attacks. Their favorite human body parts to crave are the face and the hands. Suggestion to wear “real mask” & gloves when you go to bed?

(ii) Some rats have kangaroo pouch and can sense tuberculosis. The body of this particular subspecies measures 18 inches in length and has around 3 pounds in weight. Their distinguishing feature – a kangaroo-like pouch on the body! What is more amazing are their capability of detecting tuberculosis; such unique gift is faster and more accurate than the medical test of this disease. You can’t keep them as pets, however, as they are also the culprits of transmitting monkey pox!

(iii) Rats will die if they stop chewing. Why do rats never stop chewing? That’s because their teeth never cease growing during their 7-year life span. If they stop chewing, their teeth will overgrow into their brain and consequently kill them! This is why they have to constantly gnaw on things in order to exercise their teeth on a frequent, non-stop basis.

(iv) Rats have teeth of steel. Their open-rooted teeth and jaw muscles are structured in a manner that runs all the way up to their eye sockets. Such biological tooth structure enables them to gnaw through wiring and even concrete! Imagine what they can do to human flesh!

(v) Rats can climb up the toilet and bite your butt. Flushing them down the toilet into the sewage system won’t do any good as they are born Olympic swimmers. Be sure to look next time when you lift the toilet seat, you wouldn’t want any uninvited guest to accompany your sh**ty business.

(vi) Rats pee very often – about 80 times a day! Ergo, prepare to clean your house often too.

Having rat problem? Contact AntiPest today at 03-8023 1888 for our professional rat control advice and solution.

Reference:
https://www.ranker.com/list/horrifying-facts-about-rats/cynthia-griffith?page=1
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Tips on Warding Off Flies

Ever wondered what it feels like when you enjoy a good meal and a fly suddenly disrupts your feasting pleasure? Well, it certainly feels annoying not just by the sight of such pesky insect, hearing its buzzing sound around you is enough to turn off your good mood. A single fly is capable of laying 9,000 eggs, imagine what it does to your food before you ingest the food together with the eggs in it … Totally unimaginable!

There are some ways to help you ward these pests off or minimize their unwanted presence.

(i) Flies are attracted to strong scent of food. Keep the kitchen door and window closed when you cook; this, however, can be impractical, as doing so can be very stuffy in the kitchen. An alternative suggestion would be to place a fan in the kitchen and direct the running fan to the open door or window, this is because flies hate to be blown by wind. Clean up the food after meal and make sure there are no leftover remnants on the dining table or the cooking place/space (for example, the frying pan). Wash the dishes and do not let them stay uncleaned overnight.

(ii) Seal the uneaten cooked food and place it in the refrigerator or store the excess food in tight container. Waste food must be discarded in the trash can and the lid must be closed securely. Get rid of the trash the next day. Flies crave for compost too, ergo, keep the compost as far away from the house as possible.

(iii) Flies love to wander around animal feces. If you have a dog or cat, be sure to dispose of its excrement in a proper manner by flushing it in toilet, burying it or putting in a plastic bag, seal the bag & discard it.

(iv) Flies like to hide in bushy shrubs and tall grass. Hence, it is recommended to mow your grass often and manicure your lawn on a regular basis.

(v) Like mosquitoes, flies desire for standing water. Drain the unwanted or excess water around your house. Pour boiling water down the drains and cover them up.

(vi) If you still see flies around despite undertaking the above-mentioned preventive measures, check your house and garden thoroughly to see if there’s any carcass (example, dead rat, dead insects, etc.) or maggot, and dispose of them accordingly.

(vii) Engage a pest control professional.

Contact AntiPest (03-8023 1888) today. We provide fly traps known as Electronic Insect Trapping Devices that come with 2 models (Discreet & Hercules) to help solve your pesky fly problem.

Reference:
https://www.everydayhealth.com/healthy-living/14-tricks-get-rid-flies/
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How to Keep Pests Away from Your Kitchen

Which part of your house or a commercial building has the highest chance of getting infested with various kinds of pest?  Kitchen, no doubt, as it is the main area for storing food that can attract the critters; to them, kitchen is the place of their gathering and get-together because it is their food source.

A proper and disciplinary pest control in the kitchen is essential in ensuring that you are being fed with fresh and uncontaminated food and, in the case of commercial kitchen, pest-ridden and unclean food can turn off the customers resulting in loss of business to the restaurant owner, not to mention contaminated and disease-ridden food caused by rats that can endanger the health and lives of the diners.

To maintain the cleanliness and a pest-free environment in the kitchen, here are some tips to help you ward off pests from your kitchen.

First things first.  It is important to identify the “problem” areas that are easily accessible to pests in the kitchen.  Pay attention to the food storage area (e.g. cabinet), dining area (dining table), waste disposal area (garbage bin), and food preparation area (kitchen table or sink).

(i) Always cover your trash can to prevent the smell of food from spreading out.  Clean and empty your can regularly.  A dirty garbage can with rotten leftover food is a favorite hot spot for rats, in particular.

(ii) Seal all the cracks and caulk the fissures on the walls in your kitchen because cockroaches love to hide in these holes.

(iii) Store all your foodstuffs in airtight containers.  You wouldn’t want a massive ant invasion of your yummy foods.

(iv) Keep the doors and windows in the kitchen closed to avoid those uninvited guests.

(v) Let a licensed pest controller do the dirty work for you, help you ease your job and make the pest control treatment more effective.

Having pest problem in your kitchen?  Wait no further.  Contact AntiPest today at 03-8023 1888 for our expertise and professional pest control solution.

References:
https://medium.com/@bayswaterpestcn/how-can-i-prevent-pest-infestation-in-my-commercial-kitchen-area-ee97c585c0db
https://www.foodsafety.com.au/resources/guides/how-to-keep-your-commercial-kitchen-clear-of-pests
https://www.pinterest.com/pin/425379127291100252/?lp=true (Image source)

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Preventative Pest Control For Your Place

Preventative Pest Control For Your Place

Keeping your property pest-free is tough work especially when there are so many aspects to consider. Even so, it requires an effective pest management programme to ensure the upkeep of your property as well as the amenities available.

By creating an integrated pest control action plan that runs throughout the year, property managers like you will have a better chance at keeping unwelcome critters out and happy residents in. After all, having solid preventive pest control is crucial to protecting your property and residents from pests.

One way for you to do so is to engage a pest control service that offers Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programme, which has been advocated for its environmentally responsible approach.

Before we dive into what you can do for preventative pest control, let’s take a look at the key aspects to consider when it comes to ensuring that your property is well-protected.

Key aspects to consider

There are three aspects to consider if you want to ensure that your property is protected from pests – landscaping, exterior maintenance, and finishing touch.

a) Landscaping

If the landscape of your property is one of the major factors that make it popular among your residents, you will need to ensure that it’s pest-free to keep your residents from leaving.

Make sure to inspect the grounds for uneven spots as these areas can become an entryway for pests. With Malaysia’s weather conditions, dormant pools of water can collect at these spots and provide a breeding ground for mosquitoes. Also, inspect your property’s landscape for any termite activity as they can cause costly damages to the structure.

Enlist help from your pest control professional during the landscaping work as they can work with your landscaping team to implement a preventative measure that’s pleasing to the residents while your landscape remains unattractive to pests.

b) Exterior maintenance

Alongside regular inspection of your property’s landscape, maintaining the exterior of your property will go a long way in helping to deter pests from entering your property and the homes of your residents.

Inspect the vents and have them properly screened to avoid pest infestation. You should also install weather strips around windows and doors to close the gaps. Make sure to inspect the strips regularly and replace them when necessary.

Also, look for cracks and other damages on the exterior wall structure. Seal them with weather-resistant sealant to keep pests from gaining entry into the structure. Aside from the wall structure, make sure to inspect the roof for any cracks or missing shingles.

c) Finishing touch

Although an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programme can strengthen your structural defence against pest infestation throughout the year, it isn’t a one-time solution but a continuous process to help keep pests out. For the programme to work effectively, it will require the support of everyone involved to keep the property free from pests.

What can you do to keep the property pest-free?

With these three factors in mind, you can reduce the costs of property upkeep as well as operational costs because lack of proper maintenance can result in faulty equipment, human injuries, and regulatory fines. Here’s what you can do to keep your property pest-free:

Consider predictive testing and inspection programme

As prevention is better than cure, you should consider a predictive testing and inspection programme. This can help reduce the maintenance cost of the amenities available as well as enable rightly-timed maintenance. Besides, predictive testing helps to monitor the system components to detect trends that indicate excessive wear or impending failure.

Automate preventive maintenance tasks

With technology at the forefront of our daily lives, automating preventive maintenance tasks can reduce operational costs. Not only that, but it can also organise the workflow and decrease deferred maintenance, giving property managers like you the information you need to be more efficient.

Partner with a professional pest control company

Professional pest control experts do what they do best – exterminate pests from properties. For instance, our team of pest control experts at AntiPest are trained on IPM as well as advanced termite identification and biology, allowing us to utilise the most efficient pest control methods, monitoring systems, equipment, and chemicals.

At AntiPest, we advocate the use of IPM to help prevent pest infestations before they start. You can rest assured that our Pest Alert System Approach meets HACCP standards because we are one of the professional pest control companies in Malaysia. For your commercial pest control needs, visit https://www.antipest.com.my/index.php or contact us at 03-80231888.

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Food Safety: Importance of Commercial Pest Management Service

Food Safety: Importance of Commercial Pest Management Service

Like all living beings that are drawn to places that provide food and shelter, pests are also drawn to food establishments as they make an excellent environment for the species’ survival. While this natural law may seem harmless, commercial pest control is critical because pests pose a considerable amount of risk to any establishment.

Inadequate pest control can result in pest infestation and cause major health risks to everyone involved in the food establishment, including their patrons. Not only that, but it will also lead to regulatory actions, significant product loss, as well as a public relations nightmare. More importantly, it can ruin the business’ reputation.

Instead of letting this happen to your F&B business, why not invest some of your capital in commercial pest management services? After all, pest management for food safety is likely to reduce the threat of product loss and enhance customer satisfaction and brand reputation.

In this article, we will share the types of pests that can pose a threat to your F&B business and how AntiPest’ integrated pest management programme can help tackle the threats posed.

Types of pests

There are several types of pests that can pose a risk to human health as well as the commercial viability of your business. These include:

  • RodentsRodents can do more harm than any other pests as they tend to gnaw, feed, and breed in locations where food processing is done. On top of that, they can chew on electrical wires, contaminate your foodstuff, mess up your surroundings, and spread fatal diseases, making their presence a total abomination to humankind.
  • Cockroaches – Like rodents, cockroaches are vectors of several bacterial species like Salmonella and E. coli. Living mostly in the dark, cockroaches can multiply quickly, live up to a year, and survive without food for 30 days. Not only that, but cockroaches can also induce allergies in some people.
  • FliesFlies are difficult to control and tend to multiply during warm weather. As they thrive on trash receptacles, flies are responsible for causing diseases like food poisoning, typhoid fever, etc. On top of that, flies can contaminate foodstuff and packaging materials.
  • Beetles – Categorised as stored product insects, beetles like flour mites and weevils can contaminate foodstuff with insect pupae, shed skins, faeces, body parts, and webbing, resulting in wastage of raw materials.
  • Moths – Indian Meal Moths tend to reside and reproduce indoors and are often found in kitchens, food stores, and industrial food processing plants. Since they feed on any items containing grain or cereal products, this moth species is responsible for many of the insect problems in the food industry.

How does Integrated Pest Management help?

Integrated pest management (IPM) is an environmentally responsible approach to commercial pest control that emphasises non-chemical control techniques such as sanitation and facility maintenance to help prevent pest infestation.

It isn’t a single pest control method but rather a series of pest management evaluations, decisions, and controls. By employing IPM for food safety, commercial pest control experts like AntiPest typically follow the steps listed below:

Step 1: Inspection

Before we carry out any pest control treatment in your food establishment, our surveyor will thoroughly inspect your structure and then submit a survey report to us.

Step 2: Identification

Using the survey report, we will identify visible signs of pests, signs of past or present damage in the property, and/or conditions conducive for pest infestation that may attract pests to your premises.

Step 3: Treatment

Once we have identified the pest(s), we will carry out the necessary treatment using the latest techniques and chemicals, which have been approved by the pesticide board, in all the identified areas.

Step 4: Communication

This is the most important step in our pest management approach. Once the initial treatment is completed, our technician will submit a report containing the 3 items below:

  • What was found during his inspection
  • What was done to correct/minimise the situation
  • Advice on how to maintain/improve the situation

Step 5: Documentation

Once the steps above have been conducted, AntiPest will compile a special Pest Alert file for easy reference during an audit and when further action is needed. The contents of the file will be updated regularly.

To ensure that your IPM programme reaches its potential, approach your relationship with your commercial pest management service provider as a partnership. After all, communication is key to effective pest management for food safety .

At AntiPest, we advocate the use of IPM to help prevent pest infestations before they start. You can rest assured that our Pest Alert System Approach meets HACCP standards because we are one of the professional pest control companies in Malaysia. For your commercial pest control needs, visit https://www.antipest.com.my/index.php or contact us at 03-80231888.

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Little Known Facts About Integrated Pest Management Malaysia

Little Known Facts About Integrated Pest Management Malaysia

When it comes to pest management, there are numerous strategies available today including integrated pest management. However, not many people are aware that it encompasses various approaches to solve pest problems while minimizing risks to humans and the environment.

In this article, we explore the little known facts about integrated pest management (IPM) in Malaysia, the benefits of using IPM, and how it works. We will also introduce a HACCP certified pest control company at the end of this article.

What is Integrated Pest Management Malaysia?

Integrated pest management (IPM) Malaysia is an ecologically-based pest control strategy that focuses on long-term pest prevention through a combination of techniques like biological control, habitat manipulation, modification of cultural practices, and the use of resistant varieties.

Pesticides are used only when systematic monitoring of pest populations and natural control factors indicate a need, and treatments are carried out to remove only the targeted pest. Also, pest control materials are selected and applied in a manner that minimizes risks to human health, non-target organisms, and the environment.

Why do you need IPM?

There are several reasons to incorporate integrated pest management Malaysia into your pest control strategy. Among them are:

  • Providing early detection of potential pest problem to reduce the risk of pest infestation.
  • Monitoring pest trend to help determine the right dispersion of pesticides.
  • Obtaining accurate identification and monitoring of pest for proper deployment of maintenance plans.
  • Minimising disruption to your daily operations.
  • Avoiding new pest from being introduced to the premises.

What are the approaches used in IPM?

To effectively manage pests, an IPM programme uses a combination of methods that work to complement each method for better efficacy. These approaches are grouped in the following categories:

  • Biological control involves the use of natural factors like the weather and natural enemies (predators, parasites, pathogens, and competitors) to control pests and their damage.
  • Cultural control involves practices that reduce pest establishment, reproduction, dispersal, and survival. One example of this is changing irrigation practices to reduce pest problems.
  • Mechanical and physical controls involve eliminating pests directly, blocking their entryway, or making their environment unsuitable for habitation. For instance, traps for rodents are examples of mechanical control while physical controls include barriers like screens to keep pest birds out.
  • Chemical control involves the use of pesticides. This is only used when needed and in combination with other approaches for a more effective, long-term control. The pesticides are selected and applied in a manner that minimises harm to humans, non-target organisms, and the environment.

How does Integrated Pest Management Malaysia work?

IPM isn’t a single pest control method but rather a series of pest management evaluations, decisions, and controls. In practising IPM, pest control experts who are aware of the potential for pest infestation typically follow a four-tiered approach as listed below:

Set action thresholds

Before taking any pest control action, IPM sets an action threshold whereby pest population or environmental condition indicate a need for pest control action. Equipped with this information, you can create conditions that are not suitable for the pest.

For example, you grow a healthy crop that can withstand pest attacks, use disease-resistant plants, or even seal the cracks to keep pests like termites and rodents from entering your premises.

Monitor and identify pests

IPM programmes work to monitoring your premises and help you to identify which pests are present, the size of the infestation, or what damage they have caused. This is key to knowing whether a pest is likely to become a problem so that suitable control methods can be employed.

Additionally, this monitoring and identification removes the possibility of using pesticides when they’re not needed or that the wrong pesticide will be used.

Prevention

As the first line of pest control, IPM programmes work to prevent pests from becoming a threat to your premises. In food establishments, this may mean using mechanical and physical controls to block pests from entering your premises.

Meanwhile, in agricultural fields, the use of cultural control like rotating between different crops, planting pest-resistant varieties, etc., can reduce pest establishment, reproduction, dispersal, and survival.

Control

Once the three approaches above indicate that pest control is needed and preventive methods prove to be less effective, integrated pest management (IPM) Malaysia programmes will then evaluate the proper pest control method. If all else fails, chemical control will be added to the strategy to manage pests effectively.

At AntiPest (a HACCP certified pest control company) , we advocate the use of IPM to help prevent pest infestations before they start. You can rest assured that our Pest Alert System Approach meets HACCP standards because we are one of the professional pest control companies in Malaysia.

As an ISO 9001:2015 and HACCP certified pest control company, you can rest assured that our products and services meet international standards. For your pest control needs, visit https://www.antipest.com.my/ or contact us at 03-80231888.

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