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In An Effort To Rid Her Business Of Insect Pests Without Professional Assistance, A Woman Blew Up Her Salon

Discovering that your home, business or rental property is infested with insects is always a bummer, but making the situation worse by introducing new problems is certainly the last thing that anybody would want to do in such a situation. One great way to start things out on the wrong foot when dealing with an insect infestation is to convince oneself that the insects can be eradicated without professional assistance and with commercially available pesticides. Of course, some insect situations within a house can be handled by non-trained homeowners, but if the infestation is substantial and extends to areas of a home that are inaccessible, then calling upon the services of a pest control professional is in order. It is not uncommon for disasters to occur when homeowners and tenants attempt to eradicate insect infestations themselves. For example, not long ago, a business owner discovered that her hair salon had become infested with numerous insects of different species. In a desperate attempt to remedy the situation herself, she literally blew up her salon. But luckily, she successfully eradicated the insect pests.

A New York City woman purchased and activated 20 insect pest foggers within her hair salon in order to eradicate an extensive insect infestation within the business. Although the initial attempt at eradication via fogger managed to kill several of the insects, the foggers also revealed the true extent of the infestation, which was more widespread than she had realized. Since an even greater number of insects arrived to replace the ones that had just been killed, the salon owner proceeded to set up a few dozen additional bug foggers to seal the deal. Unfortunately for the amatuer pest control operator, the woman left the pilot light in her stove on, which ignited the flammable aerosol released by the several dozen fogging machines.

The resulting blast certainly eradicated the insect pests, but the building’s windows were blown out on a total of three stories and 12 people sustained injuries. One building resident described running from the flames in an attempt to escape the building alive. Not surprisingly, this particular incident is nothing new, as non-professionals blow up their homes or other structures 500 times every year in the US in ill-conceived efforts to eradicate insect infestations with flammable fogging machines.

Do you believe that it is ever permissible for a non-expert to attempt a DYI pest eradication method?

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Is It True That Scorpions Sting Themselves To Death When Confronted By Fire?

For centuries, the claim that scorpions commit suicide via their own stinger when surrounded by fire has been spread among people of all cultures. Apparently, a scorpion, when confronted with an insurmountable threat, such as a ring of fire, will sometimes opt to take its own life. But is this claim true? Can a scorpion commit suicide? Can a scorpion willingly sting itself? The answers to all three of these questions is a big “no”. At least this is the answer given by entomologists, biologists and numerous other experts concerning the topic of scorpion suicide. Despite expert claims to the contrary, some people today, upon catching a scorpion, will sadistically light a ring of fire around it solely to witness the arachnid sting itself to death rather than suffer a painful demise. There is a surprisingly large amount of anecdotal reports that describe this suicidal behavior in great detail, and in the past, many scientists insisted that scorpions sometimes do, in fact, commit suicide in certain dire situations.

Scorpions are one of the oldest, if not the oldest, terrestrial animals to exist on the planet. Therefore, scorpions are uniquely adaptable and hardy creatures. In fact, scorpions can even survive the radioactive fallout that results from nuclear blasts. Considering the evolutionary success of scorpion species, the idea that they evolved suicidal behaviors is ridiculous. Another clear problem with the “fire myth” is the fact that a scorpion species is, obviously, unharmed by its own venom, and even the venom of other scorpion species. Despite the glaring logical problems concerning this myth, researchers puzzled over this alleged phenomenon for centuries. Back in 1887, a Professor of Biology, Alfred Bourne, at the Presidency College in Madras, aimed to settle the question of scorpion suicide once and for all. In the study, Bourne mentioned several prominent scientists of his time who were convinced that scorpions sometimes commit suicide when surrounded by fire. As for all of the modern anecdotal reports that can be found online claiming that scorpion-suicide is real, experts say that the purported self-stinging is actually the scorpion reacting frantically and spasmodically to the heat of the fire.

Have you ever heard the “scorpion suicide” myth before? If you have, then did you believe it to be true? Do you still?

Seven winter pest-proofing tips

It is a common misconception that when the temperature drops pests will simply disappear until the spring. The reality is that many pests synonymous with warmer weather, like mosquitoes, ticks, ants and termites, can survive well into the winter and some may even look to our homes for a warm place to stay.

iPest Solutions recommends the following tips for keeping cozy by the fire without any interruption from winter pests:

  • Trim back trees to prevent access to the underside of the roof overhang.
  • Declutter the basement, attic and any utility rooms to remove harborage sites for rodents.
  • Repair loose mortar and replace worn weather-stripping around doors and windows.
  • Store food in a sealed container and keep crumbs off of the floor.
  • Seal any and all cracks or gaps on the home’s exterior with a silicone-based caulk, steel wool or a combination of both.
  • Store firewood at least 20 feet from the home on a raised, covered structure. Inspect pieces of firewood for signs of pests before bringing inside for use.
  • Partner with a licensed pest control professional to inspect the home and address any pest problems.

Another way to prevent a winter pest invasion is by avoiding ice dams. These dams can cause moisture problems in homes, which attracts rodents and cockroaches, among other pests. If a homeowner suspects an infestation of any kind this season, iPest Solutions is only a phone call away.

For more information on how to prevent pests from invading homes this winter, visit www.wacopest.com

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You Won’t Believe Why Women Are Gluing A Well Known Killer Scorpion Species To Their Fingernails

During the early summer of 2016, a dangerous fashion trend swept the country of Mexico, and this trend has yet to die-off. This fashion trend entails gluing baby scorpions to fingernails, and these baby scorpions are not just any scorpions, they are actually one of the most deadly scorpion species in the world.

There currently exists around 2,000 scorpion species that have been documented, and 221 of these species can be found in Mexico. Of these 221 species in Mexico, only 8 are known to possess venom that is strong enough to kill an adult human. Although it may be hard to believe, but the Durango scorpion is one of these deadly species, and this is the same species being used by women as a decorative fingernail ornament. This means that there exists 213 non-deadly scorpion species native to Mexico that could have been chosen as a fingernail decoration, but for some reason, the deadly Durango scorpion is the species that Mexican women prefer to have glued to their nails as a mark of beauty.

While a mere 8 deadly scorpions may not seem like a high number, it should be known that the rate of deadly scorpion stings is particularly high in Mexico. In 2008, the number of documented scorpion stings reached 53,840 in Mexico, which far outnumbers the rate of scorpion stings that occur in just about every other country on earth. The Durango scorpion is not only one of the most deadly scorpion species in the world, but its venom kills sting victims within a period of 15 short minutes. This is astounding considering that other deadly scorpion stings often take hours to kill an adult human. Given the short amount of time in which this species kills a human, antivenom is often not administered to victims in enough time to save their lives, making the Durango scorpion responsible for a particularly high proportion of scorpion related deaths. Mexican women would really be better off sticking to simple nail polish.

Do you known of any other arachnid species that can kill its bite or sting victims within a matter of minutes?

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Can Scorpions Be Found Dwelling In The Midwest United States?

Scorpions are one of earth’s oldest living animals, as fossil evidence suggests that they have existed on earth for nearly half of one billion years. Not only does this make scorpions the oldest living arachnids, but it also makes them the oldest living terrestrial predators, as they are believed to be among the first animals to emerge from their former ocean habitat. Considering the advanced age of scorpions on the evolutionary tree of life, it is no wonder as to why they have become one of the most diverse and widespread of all arachnid groups. Although scorpions are typically associated with the arid desert landscape that makes up much of Arizona, New Mexico and southern California, there a numerous scorpion species that exist elsewhere in the United States. Luckily, non-desert dwelling scorpion species are mostly harmless and prefer to hide beneath rocks before emerging at night to hunt prey. Many people may be aware of the fact that scorpions exist within states like Mississippi, Florida, South Carolina and even North Carolina, but it is not commonly known that wild scorpions can also be found within the states of Virginia, central Kentucky and even Illinois. This makes scorpions native to the heartland states, where residents would never expect to spot a wild scorpion.

The scorpion species officially known as Vaejovis carolinianus, and more commonly known as either the “southern unstriped scorpion” or “southern devil scorpion,” can be found in the western portion of North Carolina. Two other scorpion species,  Centruroides vittatus and Centruroides hentzi, were introduced to North Carolina accidentally some years ago, and they still maintain a presence in the state to this day. However, what is most surprising is the fact that one scorpion species can be found within the state of Illinois, which is located in the center of the United States. This species is known as the the striped bark scorpion (Centruoides vittatus), which is a different species than the Arizona bark scorpion, which is the most venomous scorpion species in the US. Luckily for midwesterners who fear scorpions, it is highly unlikely for anyone to encounter this species considering its small size and reclusive habitat.

Have you ever stumbled upon a scorpion species in the midwest or eastern region of the US?

 

Waco Scorpion Control

Amazon Is Selling A Therapeutic Scorpion Venom That Has Been Used With Success In Cuba For Several Years

Many cultures around the world regard certain types of scorpion venom as an effective form of medicine for treating a variety of conditions. The medicinal value of scorpion venom is no longer being dismissed as an ineffective type of alternative medicine by western medical researchers, as this blog has already described how western researchers are developing venom-based cancer treatments. However, scorpion venom has been traditionally used to treat numerous medical conditions, not just cancer. Western researchers remain skeptical when it comes to the effectiveness of scorpion venom at-treating a wide range of medical maladies. Due to this skepticism on the part of American medical researchers, the United States is trailing other countries when it comes to the development of venom-based medicines. For example, for nearly a decade in the island country of Cuba, pharmaceutical drugs containing scorpion venom have been manufactured and prescribed to thousands of Cuban citizens in order to effectively treat a variety of medical conditions. The key to Cuba’s success with venom-based drugs is due to their access to a native scorpion species that does not exist anywhere except for the Caribbean and Central America. This scorpion species is commonly known as the blue scorpion, and its venom is of unique value for treating inflammation, pain, arthritis and possibly tumors.

Since 2011, the Cuban pharmaceutical firm Labiofam has been using venom from the blue scorpion species to develop a homeopathic medicine called Vidatox. According to Labiofam’s Business Director, Carlos Alberto Delgado,Vidatox sales have been increasing by 10 percent annually, and the drug is also being sold in 15 different countries worldwide. The company is currently negotiating to have the drug marketed in China. In Cuba, the tens of thousands of citizens who take the drug pay no more than one dollar for a prescription,but in other markets, the cost of Vidatox is often one hundred times this amount. For example, if Americans want a bottle of Vidatox, they will have to pay 140 dollars for a months supply on Amazon. Numerous Cubans also stand by the medicinal value of blue scorpion venom for treating cancerous tumors.

Would you consider blue scorpion venom treatments if you had terminal cancer?

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A Couple Finds A Scorpion Within A Box Of Sainsbury’s Blackberries In The UK

Nobody likes a scorpion in his/her package of store-bought blackberries, but this is exactly what one UK citizen, James Green, received after purchasing a box of blackberries from the popular supermarket known as Sainsbury’s. Major corporations, like Sainsbury’s, do not like admitting to the existence of potentially dangerous arthropods within their product packages, but managers working at a Sainsbury’s in Wigan had no choice but to admit guilt after being confronted with the scorpion-contaminated product. In response to this unfortunate discovery, a Sainsbury’s spokesperson has announced an investigation into the matter.

After finding a scorpion with its pincers and stinger still attached within a box of Sainsbury’s-brand blackberries, James Green and his wife placed the specimen within a plastic container. The scorpion was only a few centimeters in length, and James is guessing that it originated in Mexico, as the blackberries contained within the package were grown and packaged within the country. James had eaten almost every blackberry from the package before realizing that it contained a scorpion. Luckily, the scorpion was dead, otherwise James would likely have sustained a sting. However, in most cases, arthropods die while being transported within shipments of food products, as the absence of a nourishing environment makes even the hardiest of arthropod species, like scorpions, ill suited for overseas transport.

A Sainsbury’s spokesperson claimed that it is incredibly rare for customers to find arthropods within their Sainsbury products, and the customer who recently found a scorpion in a box of blackberries had been approached with a generous offer of goodwill for his trouble. However, Green claimed that this “gesture of goodwill,” as the Sainsbury’s spokesperson put it, consisted of a compensation offer of 15 pounds. Unfortunately, James and his wife did not become rich as a result of this incident, but they could have asked for more than 15 pounds.

Have you ever encountered a terrifying arachnid only to learn that it was dead?

Waco Rat Control

Keep Pests Outdoors Where They Belong This Winter

As temperatures across the country drop and the holiday season approaches, iPest Solutions reminds homeowners to take steps to prevent pests from dropping by uninvited. Rodents and cockroaches, the most common winter pests, love nothing more than to spend the chilly winter inside a cozy home, bringing with them health and property threats.

Most people associate cooler weather with relief from flying pests such as mosquitoes and wasps, but the winter brings on a different set of pest problems that are just as serious, rats are most likely to cause problems in Waco this time of year, so it’s important for homeowners to prevent these pests from entering their homes.

Aside from being nuisances, rodents and cockroaches are vectors of a wide array of diseases and can exacerbate asthma and allergy symptoms – effects only worsened by the increased time spent indoors during the winter. Rodents can also chew through drywall, insulation, wood and electrical wiring, increasing the potential risk for fires.

iPest Solutions offers the following tips for keeping homes pest-free this winter:

  • Seal cracks and holes on the outside of your home to help prevent pests from getting inside. Be sure to check the areas where utilities and pipes enter the home. A mouse can fit through a hole the size of a dime.
  • Replace loose mortar and weather stripping around the basement foundation and windows.
  • Store firewood at least 20 feet from the home. Pests often take up residence in wood piles and can easily gain access to your home if the pile is nearby.
  • Rodents can hide in clutter, so keep storage areas well organized, and store boxes off of the floor.
  • Eliminate all moisture sites, including leaking pipes and clogged drains. Extra attention should be paid to kitchens and bathrooms as these areas are particularly vulnerable to cockroach infestations.
  • Install door sweeps and repair damaged screens in windows.
  • Screen vents to chimneys. Keep attics, basements and crawl spaces well ventilated and dry.

We encourage homeowners to remain vigilant throughout the winter for any signs of pest infestations and to regularly inspect for any possible points of entry throughout the home.

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Big City Spiders Are Less Afraid of Light Than Their Country Cousins

Spiders in general aren’t known for running around in the daylight. They tend to stick to dark corners, as this helps them better hunt unsuspecting prey and it helps them hide from other possible predators. However, there is one situation in which a spider has a bigger advantage working with light; if the spider in question is a web-weaving spider. Prey such as moths are attracted to sources of light such as street lamps. However, these kinds of light-emitting objects also tend to be located in more urban and suburban areas. Tomer Czaczkes of the University of Regensburg, in Germany, believes that because of this, at least one species of urban web-spinning spider has lost its fear of light, or photophobia, in order to set up their web near such lights and take advantage of the better access to prey attracted to light.Waco Spider Control

It was after seeing many well-fed and happy spiders building their webs near streetlamps in Regensburg that Dr. Czaczkes began to wonder if city life has changed spiders’ behavior. When he found out that urban moth populations are less attracted to light than their rural cousins, he thought that the reverse might be true for urban spiders. Urban spiders should be more attracted to, or less afraid of, lights than rural spiders. To see if his theory was true Dr. Czaczkes and his colleagues took 783 spiderlings from both rural and urban areas, as well as a number of different countries, and placed them in boxes individually that had a board dividing the space in half. He lit one side of each box with a lamp that produced no heat, and left the other side dark, with two tiny gaps allowing the spiderlings to cross between the two sides. After randomly placing each spiderling in either the dark or light side of the box, the researching then watched to see in which side they built their web.

The results were exactly as Dr. Czaczkes expected they would be. Two thirds of the spiderlings collected from rural locations built their webs in the dark side of the box. Their urban cousins, however, only built half of their webs in the dark side, suggesting that the urban spiders were indeed less afraid of light. The rural spiders were still very photophobic, but the urban spiders had adapted to the point where they did not exactly like the light, but had at least ceased to fear it.

Have you ever noticed how many spider webs in urban areas are close to light fixtures? Have you noticed less spiders hanging around near lights in rural areas?

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PESTS THAT GIVE HOMEOWNERS A SCARE THIS HALLOWEEN

CREEPY CRAWLY PESTS THAT GIVE HOMEOWNERS A SCARE THIS HALLOWEEN

iPest Solutions shares information on common pests that may take up residence during the colder months

While it’s normal to see bats, spiders and other creatures invade your front doorstep on Halloween in the form of trick-or-treaters or spooky décor, IPest Solutions  advises people to be on the lookout for real-life ghoulish pests this fall.

Halloween is a fun celebration of all things creepy and crawly, but it also serves as a reminder that actual pest infestations can cause quite the fright. In the spirit of this spooky holiday, we are reminding homeowners to take preventative measures to keep pests from taking up residence indoors.

Here’s a guide to some common critters that may spook homeowners this fall, along with tips to prevent them from turning the home into a haunted house.

Rats – One of the most reviled pests, rats can contaminate food, spread dangerous diseases and create fire hazards by chewing through electrical wires. Before homeowners bring boxes of pumpkins and faux cobwebs inside to decorate for Halloween, they should inspect them for signs of an infestation such as gnaw marks and rodent droppings.

Bats – Bats are frequent carriers of rabies, which can be fatal if left untreated. They often enter homes through attics, belfries and under fascia boards. Homeowners should screen attic vents and openings to chimneys, and install door sweeps this fall to keep bats out of the home.

Spiders – Some species of spiders, mainly the brown recluse and black widow, can administer a painful bite when disturbed. Homeowners can avoid coming in contact with spiders by wearing heavy gloves when moving items that have been stored for a long period of time and shaking out shoes before wearing them.

Bed bugs – Bed bugs are similar to vampires in that they feed off of human blood, typically at night. These elusive pests do not transmit disease, but they can leave red, itchy welts on the skin. Before dressing up in a costume that came from a rental or second-hand store, make sure to inspect it for bed bugs.

The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) offers some additional tips to prevent a pest infestation this Halloween season:

  • Seal cracks and crevices around the home’s exterior using caulk and steel wool. Pay close attention to where utility pipes enter the structure.
  • Keep basements, attics and crawl spaces well ventilated and dry.
  • Keep kitchen counters clean, store food in airtight containers and dispose of garbage regularly in sealed receptacles.
  • Store fire wood at least 20 feet away from the house and keep shrubbery well trimmed.
  • If you see signs of an infestation in your home, contact a licensed pest professional.

For more information on common household pests and how to protect your home, visit www.wacopest.com