Integrated Pest Management:
Also known as IPM, is a coordinated decision-making process that uses the most appropriate pest control methods and strategies to keep pests at a tolerable level.
Methods for Insect and Rodent Free Living
Step 1. Keep it Clean.
If it's clean, bugs and rodents won't have much of a reason to be present. Not always the case but the longer dust and debris build up the more potential for sustaining a pests appetite. The usual scene of most infestations occurs in situations where there are lots of those hard to reach areas that get routinely missed on cleaning day. For example, that piece of sausage that fell off the pizza and rolled behind the oven two weeks ago, a nugget from heaven in a bugs life.
Although having a not so spotless house increases the likelihood of having bugs and rodents, there are those times when neat and tidy homes and structures become infested as well, which is where preventative maintenance comes in.
Step 2. The Exterior of Structure.
Allowing trees and shrubbery to come into contact with your home or building is like throwing up a ladder or scaffolding creating more avenues for pests wanting to invade your space. Trimming limbs and any foliage at least 2 feet away from a structure not only eliminates those extra byways but also prevents any moisture issues associated with loss of light and air movement. Another advantage of keeping the 2 foot perimeter is it allows for easy access for anyone providing maintenance or inspections.
Also make sure there is no earth to wood contact. Dirt, landscape bark, or gravel against wood or siding is known as a "conducive condition" which needs to be avoided at all times.
One other commonly overlooked problem is with gutters, these are very important to keep clear of debris. With all the rain we are blessed with here in the PNW, clogged gutters can quickly become a prime environment for mosquitoes and other insects to breed.
Whenever applying pesticides it is very important to make sure that they don't come into contact with anything in bloom. That means any kind of flower. Our pollinators land on just about every flower or weed in bloom. Insecticides on flowers equals dead pollinators which is another reason to keep the 2 foot clearance around the structure where chemicals are to be applied.
Step 3. Not all Bugs are Bad
Yes they have more legs and eyes than we do and they have exoskeletons, but realistically they do play an important part in our world. Spiders, some beetles, ants, wasps and hornets all help control and keep in check the numbers of other not so beneficial insects. There are way more of them than there ever will be of us, meaning we will never be able to completely get rid of them all. With routine cleaning, yard/home maintenance, and a preventative pest management program it makes it possible to co-exist with insects in our lives.