crickets cooked to eat entomophagy

“I ate this” (crickets ready for eating)

In recent years, foodies and earth-conscious eaters alike have grown increasingly interested in entomophagy (for the uninitiated, that’s the practice of eating insects). There are several reasons why, but a big one is that we’re facing a looming global food crisis. According to entomophagy proponents, insects could be one answer to this crisis because the critters require fewer resources—specifically, feed, land, and water—than other popular sources of protein such as poultry, pigs, and cattle. Part of the reasoning behind this hinges on the idea that insects are better at converting feed to protein compared to larger livestock.

I wrote a feature for the May issue of Popular Science about entomophagy exploring, specifically, the cricket farming and startup trend in North America (read here for more). Of course, as happens with many science stories, since science is a dynamic field, new research on how well crickets convert feed to protein published the very day that my story went live. I think it’s worth exploring that work here, as well as putting it in context.

The new study published at PLOS One by Mark Lundy, an agronomist from the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, and Michael Parella, an entomologist from UC Davis. The team examined how well the house cricket, Acheta domesticus, converted five different feeds into edible protein: poultry feed and rice bran, processed waste from thrown-out grocery store food, minimally-processed post-consumer waste, a wheat and corn mix commonly fed to dairy cows, and a mixture of chicken manure, wheat, straw, and rice. They also raised the crickets in much higher numbers and densities than previous related studies—presumably more closely imitating how crickets would be massed-produced on farms.

“A primary motivation for doing the study was to quantify more thoroughly whether some of the efficiencies that had been previously reported would hold at an economically relevant production scale and on diets that weren’t already being integrated into the global protein supply chain,” Lundy says.

The researchers weighed the food, measured its nutritional value, subtracted the amount of feed that the crickets didn’t eat, and figured out the conversion factor from there. Crickets given the poultry feed mix and the processed food waste did fairly well, but more than 99 percent of the populations fed the remaining three diets died before they could be harvested.

Both the crickets raised on the poultry feed and the processed consumer waste converted protein roughly as well as chicken, and both groups were still considerably better compared to pigs and cows. And while the consumer waste group didn’t convert as well as the poultry feed group, the former has greater potential for sustainable farming since it comes from a waste stream, avoiding the extra greenhouse gases, water use, and other factors associated with raising grain for feed.

Free Lunch?

So does that mean crickets aren’t a “free lunch” after all? First of all, no lunch will ever be entirely free—any food we grow will require some sort of input. We aren’t Strega Nona. Second, while the study shows that the comparison between chickens and crickets might not be as rosy as once thought—at least under some conditions—it doesn’t show that for other livestock. The conversion also clearly greatly depends on what, exactly, the crickets are eating.

I asked a few of the cricket farmers and startups I interviewed for my PopSci feature what they thought of the new study. Keep in mind, of course, that insects are their business of choice, so they’re keen on spreading the cricket gospel. But they bring up good points.

Nathan Allen from Aspire, which is launching a cricket farm in Texas, points out that the study didn’t compare other major differences between cricket farming and chicken farming, including the use of antibiotics and hormones, humane “culling” (i.e. how the animals are slaughtered), green house gas and waste outputs from manure, the percentage of the animals that can ultimately made into food, and the overall nutritional comparison between the final products.

Kevin Bachhuber from Big Cricket Farms in Youngstown, Ohio, says the study also looked at food that isn’t actually fed to farmed crickets. “Crickets fed on unprocessed straw and chicken shit are going to die. That’s not what they eat. I’d die if that’s all you fed me, too.” As for the chicken feed diet used in the study, Bachhuber adds, farmed crickets usually eat a slightly different formulation because they require different ratios of Vitamin A, choline chloride, and other nutrients. The discrepancies in the feed used in the study could impact how well the crickets grew.

And according Pat Crowley, a hydrologist and the co-founder of Chapul, a cricket protein bar company: “I would say that the largest take home from this study is that there is indeed a dearth of data on the feed conversion ratios, with much of it coming from a few experiments out of Wageningen University in the Netherlands. The improvements Lundy intended to make were to mimic more of a farm-like environment to produce ratios from a population of crickets, instead of individual organisms.” Still, adds Crowley, there are key factors that contribute to growth that the study didn’t consider, including humidity, temperature, and other environmental conditions.

Lundy is working on a new study on black soldier fly larvae to explore regionally scalable waste streams, and he says “we are seeing some promising results.”

Whatever the take on this new conversion paper, it shows that a lot more work needs to be done to figure out the nuances of insect farming (which is pretty much the case for any study). And since experts still debate over the best way to farm cattle and other livestock—which have been around far longer in the U.S.—I’m sure the conversation about the benefits of cricket farming will continue for quite some time.


What do YOU think?  Leave your thoughts below and share!


Bed bug eradication requires tenant cooperation

Bed bug eradication requires tenant cooperation

To successfully eliminate bed bugs, pest management professionals (PMPs) say they need the cooperation of people living the pests, according to a survey conducted byUC Agriculture and Natural Resources scientists.California’s pest management pros are divided over whether they believe that some of the state’s bed bug populations are resistant to insecticides, but they agree that the bugs may survive treatments by finding safe harbor in excessive clutter and personal items that tenants didn’t want treated or thrown away. In addition, some settings – such as hotels, motels, college dorms and homeless shelters – may be continually reinfested.Bed bugs are among the most challenging and expensive pests to manage. Because they are so difficult to eradicate, the job is typically left in the hands of PMPs, who face an increasing number of bed bug infestations in California.

UC ANR scientists are working closely with PMPs in the state to find ways that will make bed bug eradication easier and more likely to succeed.

Bed bugs co-evolved with humans, and feed exclusively on blood. Their preferred habitat is inside warm rooms near where humans sleep and rest. Bed bugs are drawn to the carbon dioxide that humans exhale with every breath, and they seek out a blood meal by piercing the skin of a sleeping person. A few minutes later, they scurry back to hiding places.

According to an often-referenced annual report conducted nationwide by Orkin Pest Control, the San Francisco Bay Area is No. 14 on the list of 50 cities with the most calls for help controlling the pest. Sacramento-Stockton-Modesto, now at 27, jumped 14 spaces from 2013 to 2014. Los Angeles is fourth on the list, the highest of any area in California. A Terminix report said bed bug calls in Sacramento increased 54 percent from 2012 to 2013, more than any other city in the nation.

“Increases in bed bug infestations may be partly due to changes in the way we manage household pests,” said Andrew Sutherland, the urban integrated pest management advisor for UC ANR in the Bay Area. “In the 1930s and 40s, DDT was commonly used indoors. The pesticide is very persistent and effective and controlled all indoor pests, including bed bugs, sometimes for years.”

In the 1980s and 90s, other broad-spectrum insecticides, such as chlorpyrifos and diazinon, were commonly sprayed, but they are no longer approved for indoor use. Today, safer methods, such as baits and traps, are used to control common pests (such as ants and cockroaches), and bed bugs are usually unaffected.

When Sutherland was hired three years ago, he realized there was little information available about obstacles to bed bug control in California. “Most of the information about bed bugs is from research taking place in the Midwest and the Eastern Seaboard,” he said.

UC ANR awarded funds to Sutherland and Dong-Hwan Choe, a UC ANR urban pest specialist based at UC Riverside, to collect data from those who were on the frontline in the battle against bed bugs – PMPs and managers of multi-unit housing facilities. The researchers later received funds from the USDA’s Western IPM Center to expand the study to 13 western states.

Bed bug bites cause swellings that become red and irritated when scratched. (Photo: Chet K. Fukushima)
Bed bug bites cause swellings that become red and irritated when scratched. (Photo: Chet K. Fukushima)
Early results of Sutherland and Choe’s surveys showed that 75 percent of PMPs said bed bug infestations in 2014 had increased from the previous year. Forty percent said they believed they have encountered bed bugs that were resistant to insecticides, while 60 percent said they had not.“There was no correlation between the amount of experience the professionals had and their perception about bed bug resistance in California,” Sutherland said.The most common way for professionals to become aware of bed bug infestation has been visual inspections after complaints by tenants. Now, prevention is on the rise, an important component of integrated pest management.

“Our objective is to manage pests below unacceptable levels with minimal negative impacts on communities and the environment,” Sutherland said. “Prevention comes before all other management practices.”

The survey found that pitfall traps (interceptors) are used at least sometimes by 40 percent of pest management respondents to monitor for the pests. Active monitors, glue board monitors and harborage or shelter monitors are also employed.

The pest management professionals reported using a wide variety of treatments against bed bugs. Insecticides were most common, used by 91 percent of respondents most of the time. Desiccants, encasements and heat were used most of the time by about half of respondents.

Housing managers had similar responses to the survey questions. Bed bug control is challenging, they reported, when tenants don’t report infestations, are not willing or able to prepare their living space for treatment, when tenants bring secondhand furniture into their units, and when they fail to take information about the pest seriously.

One housing manager respondent complained about an “almost total inability to prevent infestation, or to prove its source and (having to shoulder) almost total responsibility for all concomitant costs.”

Original article found here

Think you may have bedbugs in NW Arkansas? Give us a call for a FREE inspection.

NWA Ladybug Pest Control   479-696-9791


Easy Boxelder Bugs Identification and Control

Easy Boxelder Bugs Identification and Control

Boxelder bugs (Boisea trivittata) have troubled many homeowners since as early as 1935. Although they are not classified as a serious problem, they are a nuisance and can also let off a rather nasty smell when disturbed. While they share similar defensive strategies with stink bugs and look pretty similar to kissing bugs, they are not the same insects and getting rid of them requires a different approach. If you are having a problem with these pests at the moment (or have in the past), this guide will show you how to kill them and prevent them from becoming a major issue in the future. We will discuss a few easy to follow, DIY methods that you can use immediately as well as a couple of long-term suggestions. Let’s get started!

Boxelder Bugs – Are They Dangerous?

Boxelder bugs are not dangerous and despite a few isolated and unconfirmed reports on the internet, they do not bite humans. It’s very likely that those that have been “bitten” have been dealing with a different pest. However, please be assured that I am not suggesting a “bite test” to decide whether you are dealing with Boxelder bugs ;) Fortunately, these bugs are fairly easy to find if you know what you are looking for.

For simple identification, keep in mind that an adult box elder bug is usually about half an inch long and while being mostly black, it has dark orange (sometimes red) lines along its thorax and wings. Their young however (usually called Nymphs), are much smaller and are easily visible due to their bright red outer coloring. As these young ones grow older, they develop the darker shades and within a short period, are ready to reproduce if the conditions are right.

Living Conditions, Diet and Life Cycle of Elder Bugs

Ideal Living Conditions: Boxelder bugs love the warmth and thus can often be found sunning themselves on building walls and other places that experience direct sunlight. If it’s cold outside, they are also known to venture indoors to disturb your peace and quiet.

They also congregate in areas that are a rich source of food and since they always need to have a source of food (otherwise they will die), they won’t stay inside for long. Even though they won’t stick around, it’s in your best interest to prevent them coming into your home and I will outline the steps to do this shortly.

Diet: These bugs are fluid feeders (they pierce plants and consume the juice for nutrients). Their favorite source of food is the seed pods that are found on the female boxelder tree. However, they are also often found on maple/ash trees (they eat the seeds) and even though it’s not their personal preference, they sometimes congregate around apple and peach trees. If you have your own fruit trees in your yard, keep an eye out for them as they can sometimes damage their produce.

Something to keep in mind is that these insects often swarm around the neighborhood, looking for food sources such as these. In other words, if you see them hanging around your garden even though you don’t have any of these food sources in your yard, they might have come from another yard in your area.

Life Cycle: Adult Boxelder bugs generally hibernate during winter. They tend to find shelter in tree trunks, in the walls or roofs of structurally damaged homes or even inside of family homes, especially in quiet areas such as the basement or attic. As the warmer months start to arrive, they begin to venture back into the world and start the search for food. After they receive sufficient nourishment, the female Boxelder bugs usually start reproducing after about 20 days and will lay her eggs in a place that has a readily available food source for when they hatch. Since she also wants to protect her young from the elements, these eggs usually land up under the bark of the tree and under leaves.

After a couple of days, the young nymphs will hatch and begin feeding on their surroundings. After only about 5-6 weeks, they will be fully formed elder bugs, ready to repeat the process once the conditions are right. For those that live in the US, the first part of the cycle usually starts in July and will end around September. Learning about this life cycle is important as it helps reinforce how important it is to deal with the infestation as quickly as possible otherwise you might face an even larger problem at a later stage.

Can These Bugs Cause Major Damage?

Picture of a box elder bugWhile they can leave unsightly excrement stains on walls (where they congregate to warm themselves up when the temperature drops), the only real damage they can do is to your fruit trees, if they decide it would be a suitable place to feed. However, remember that although they are known to eat fruit, their preference is towards maple and boxelder trees (the female, since it has the pods) and if there is one of those in your garden that will be their first stop. In saying that, the level of the damage (even to fruit, unless there is a massive number of them) is minimal and for most, they are just an irritation for home owners. As a result, many refer to them as nuisance pests. Based on some feedback from my readers, many have encouraged me to add that since these pests often travel in massive swarms, having a couple hundred sitting on your house wall is a bit gross. Although I haven’t had such a massive infestation before, I can imagine that it could cause damage to your personal pride ;)

How to Get Rid of Box Elder Bugs – 5 Easy Options to Kill Them Fast!

Green Tick For Elder Bugs Removal StepsWhile there must be hundreds of different treatment methods out there, for those of you that have read this blog for the last year or two will know that The Bug Squad only focuses on things that work while keeping things as affordable and that is exactly what we are going to do now. I urge you to choose the method that you can start to use immediately (I recommend trying the natural methods first) so that you can reaping the rewards for your effects as soon as possible. If you have any questions or are confused about a certain step, drop me a comment and I will always get back to you within about 24 hours!

Option 1: Laundry detergent (or dish soap) that is mixed with warm water, placed in a pressure sprayer (available at most garden stores) and used to physically target any visible bugs that you can find is very effective. Upon contact, this will start to break down their cell membranes and they will eventually die. Not very pretty but then again, neither is coating them with a layer of poison. ;) The only problem with this method is that it won’t keep them away so you may need to do a couple repeat treatments to get rid of all of them. The recommended ratio for those interested is about a cup of soap per 4 liters of water, you can adjust the measure as per your needs.

Option 2:Diatomaceous earth (which is also great for killing fleas) can be used to combat Boxelder bugs. This powder is safe for humans (and even pets) as long as the food grade variety is purchased. Despite what you may have read online, DE is not really for outdoor use but rather use useful for killing these insects when they come into your home through various entrances (such as your window sill, cracks in the wall or floor, openings in the roof, etc.). As soon as they come into contact with it, they will die a couple of hours later due to hundreds of microscopic cuts. Again, not too great to think about but it gets the job done.

Option 3: Borax can be found in the cleaning aisle in most supermarkets and can be used the same way as the DE above. I prefer to use DE but that is my personal preference (and because it’s readily available in my corner of the world). If you cannot get Diatomaceous Earth in your area, I highly recommend giving borax a try as there are thousands that are using it for a variety of pests and based on my reader feedback, they are getting good results.

Option 4: A plain old vacuum cleaner can be used to get rid of Boxelder bugs inside the house. Yep that’s right! While you can use things like DE and borax if there are lots of them, usually it’s enough to just find the few that made it into your home and suck them up! Of course, your better option would have been to keep them out in the first place but we will discuss how to do that in a couple of moments. This option is usually used together with one of the other ones to make sure that these pests are killed both inside your house and out.

Option 5: Using insecticide for outdoor elderbug swarms is definitely an option. However, as you have just seen, it’s not the only option and while I have nothing against formal pesticides (they are often necessary), I highly recommend that you give a couple of the natural treatment methods a try first as they are affordable and are completely safe. Of course, the decision is yours and to aid those that want to use poisons to kill elder bugs, here are some tips:

Picture of an elder bug on milkweed

  1. Try and get a product with a low toxicity level to reduce the environmental impact
  2. The best time to use this insecticide is late summer so plan your schedule to maximize results.
  3. Keep the outdoor spray away from your plants and grass. Since pyrethroids based insecticide can potentially damage these fairly badly, it’s in your best interest to make sure none of it lands on your shrubs, flowers, grass, etc.
  4. Keep your pets away from any residual poison as if they consume any, it can be potentially deadly!
  5. Pyrethroid based insecticide sprays are very common for box elder bug control. Keep in mind that there is usually a certain type for outdoor perimeter treatment (usually a liquid spray) and another type for indoor treatment (usually an aerosol based deployment mechanism such as a fogger). Do not use outdoor sprays inside your home as they can be a potential health risk to you and your family. There are other active ingredients such as Deltamethrin, Tralomethrin, etc. that also work but I have found that Permethrin based ones work the best in my experience. If would like help with this, remember you can always contact your local exterminator.

Preventative Measures for Proactive Boxelder Bug Control

It’s always better to proactively prevent a problem then to continuously react to them when it actually happens and when it comes to keeping these pests out your house, this rule also applies. Here are a few easy tips that you can check and use to protect your home from a box elder bug invasion.

  1. Repair any cracks or openings in your walls, roof and other areas of your home.
  2. If you have an elderbox tree, take time each summer to rack up the fallen pods and to bag them so that they do not attract box elder beetles to your yard.
  3. Keep your garden neat and tidy. This includes clearing broken branches, sweeping up leaves, etc. Not only will this reduce the available shelter for elder bugs, it will also prevent other potential pest problems.
  4. If there are spaces that cannot be repaired, consider using a caulking or weather-stripping product to seal these areas. Pay special attention to cable holes (e.g. for antennas, etc.) as these are a common entry point for insects and are often overlooked. Basically any area that has an opening that’s larger then about half an inch may need your attention.

FAQ IconI have had a number of people asking whether they should get rid of their box elder trees from their garden to keep these pests away. While this may solve the problem, the benefit of having the tree there usually outweighs the need to do so. This leaves you with a personal decision about what you want to do. I recommend trying the methods in this article to keep them under control and if you absolutely are failing to do so and have been for some time, removing the tree is definitely an option.

original article found here

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Fire-damage Buildings & Their Particluates: Staying Safe

Fire-damage Buildings & Their Particulates: Staying Safe
staying, safe, fire, damage, building, particulates, particles, solutions, indoor, environmental, consulting, iecVISIT WEBSITE (learn more)
This Article orginally written by Jason Yost, Solutions, Indoor Environmental Consulting
Over the course of my career I’ve gotten a lot of calls from contractors, insurance adjusters, and building owners and managers concerning mold, water-damage, and other indoor environmental issues.  But, recently, we’ve begun to see a growing number of callers concerned with fire-damaged structures and the hazards associated with those buildings.  Some of these callers are dealing or cleaning large fires while others are dealing or cleaning smoke issues from a localized incident inside the building or a neighboring building.  They ask questions like:”What hazards exist in my building?”

“How should I process the soot so my employees and clients are safe?”

“How do I know the extent of these hazards in the building?”

“How do I know it’s safe to return to the building?”


During a fire heat, smoke, and the depletion of oxygen interact, exerting themselves as serious hazards.  After the fire, these interactions begin to settle into what will become the byproduct (or condition) of the fire-damaged building and its indoor environmental quality (IEQ).  Pollution found after a fire and smoke damage includes numerous types…  And, it can come in any chemical state (solid, liquid, gas or vapor), including but not necessarily limited to:

* Particulate Matter (PM)
* gases
* humidity
* Bioaerosols


In this blog, I want to concentrate on the Particulate Matter (PM).  PM is a term used for a mixture of solid particles and liquid droplets found in the air.  Some of these PM are large or dark enough to be seen, like soot seen on furniture and building components, while other PM are so small they can be detected only with an electron microscope.  PM can be organic (carbon based matter like baseboards and door and window components) or inorganic (such as fiberglass and asbestos).


PM absorbs the gases associated with the fire, itself, and carries them to its deposition (settled) location.  For example:  A recent study found that soot included other contaminants such as: ammonia, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, hydrogen cyanide, nitrogen oxides, hydrogen chloride, sulfur dioxide, isocyanates, and acrolein.


As I mentioned above, some of these PM are large enough to be seen while others are not.  According to the Stanford Research Institute, combustion particles, like soot, range from 0.1 to 4 microns in size; comparatively, an average human hair is about 75 microns in diameter.  This is important to understand.  Why?  Because, while those particles ranging in size from 1 – 4 microns will settle out of the air quickly (making them easy to clean from surfaces), those smaller than 1 micron will remain airborne – in the respirable air – indefinitely.  Furthermore, these smaller particles, because of their light weight, can be transported, via air pressure, air current, or vapor pressure, very easily, travelling great distances as a result.


When we breath these small, respirable particles, they can travel (due to their small size) deep into our respiratory system, even in some instances as deep as the alveoli of our lungs.  These alveoli are small sacks in our lung tissues that remove oxygen (and other gases when present) from the inhaled air, transfering it into the bloodstream (a process meant to oxygenate muscles and organs, but compromised by these other gases, vapors and fumes when present).  When these respirable PM, holding their absorbed gases, fumes and vapors, enter the alveoli, they can transmit these contaminants into the bloodstream.

So, what do we do about it?  And, how do we stay safe?


Given the length of this blog, already, I will tackle those questions in my next installment on this topic.  In the meantime, if you have questions or concerns that you’d like to discuss with an occupational safety and health consultant, industrial hygienist, or indoor environmental consultant, give us a call, at Solutions Indoor Environmental Consulting:  (877) 624-7185.


Don’t take chances, gain empowering Solutions – today!


Black Widow Spider Facts

Latrodectus mactans



The Black Widow Spider is one of the most feared in North America because its venom is powerful enough to make humans very ill. This spider has been given its name because of the misconception that the female always eats the male after mating. Sometimes the male escapes unharmed.

The Black Widow is a member of the cobweb weaver family. The female Black Widow is 3/8 inch long and has legs and cephalothorax that are black. Its teardrop shaped abdomen is shiny black with a red “hourglass” mark on the underneath side.

The hourglass is easy to see because the spider hangs upside down in the tangled, but strong web. Sometimes there is a red spot near the spinnerets and even small red streaks or spots on the back of the abdomen.

The harmless male of the species is 1/8 inch long, with red and white markings on the abdomen.


Black Widows are found in many areas of the United States, but they are most common in the South. This spider prefers a dark, damp habitat. It is most often found outside, but can be found inside in dark places inside dwellings such as sheds, garages, and closets.

The female rarely leaves the web and will bite only when she is bothered. The small, oval egg cases are tan in color, papery in texture and are found hanging in the web. The female will aggressively guard her egg sacs.


The strong silk of the Black Widow’s web is perfect for catching crawling and hopping insects such as crickets, grasshoppers, and flies.

It spins its strong, tangled web close to the ground in crevices such as between rocks in rock piles, in holes of stacked bricks, between logs in woodpiles, in tree stumps, trash piles, and other similar places.

While the core of the web may be small, there are snare lines that project from it that can be a few inches to a few feet long.


Although the Black Widow is a shy, nocturnal spider (that likes to hunt for prey at night), it will bite in self-defense or if pressed against a person’s body. When the threads of the web are disturbed and the spider thinks that it has caught prey, it will rush out and bite.

The venom of the Black Widow is a neurotoxin, which is a “nerve poison” to its prey. Sometimes if it is threatened, the spider may run to one side of the web or stay perfectly still. The black color of the spider helps it blend in with the darkened environment where it lives.

Both the Black Widow Spider and the Brown Recluse spider are very common in NW Arkansas. For a free inspection, please call.

Useful DIY Tips and Guide


Don’t Let Home Pests Get You Down. Read These Tips.

You work hard for your home and on it; don’t let bugs or rodents take it over! The following article is devoted to solving pest control issues and contains useful advice. Protect your home and family by taking the necessary steps to get rid of pests and keep them gone for good.

Try to limit the amount of warm environments that you have in your house. Go around to different rooms in your home and try to gauge the temperature where the pests would want to live in the most. If you find a room that is too hot, try to reduce the overall temperature there.

If you decide to use pesticide, keep in mind that these harmful chemicals could hurt your pets. If possible, have someone take care of your pets until you get rid of your pest problem. Make sure the food you give to your pets does not come in contact with the pesticides.

If you have problems with moles in your yard, set up a trap. You will know a mole is present by the raised portion of your yard that’s been tunneled under. Use a shovel to collapse a section of the tunnel (approx. 4″). Set up a mole trap over the collapsed portion and wait for the mole to tunnel through and try to fix the collapse.

Do you have mice or other rodents in your house? Look around the outside of your home for any small crevices they could be crawling through. You may want to put poison in these areas, or some kind of filling such as scouring pads. Sometimes, odor repellents like mustard oil can be effective.

If you have many mosquitoes in your yard, and possibly even infiltrating your home, try to eliminate any standing water. If there is a high population of mosquitoes on your property, they are breeding somewhere, and they can only breed in standing water. Dump anything that collects rainwater, dump kid pools and do whatever you can to eliminate breeding grounds.

If you are struggling with an ant problem in your house, make sure you are not feeding your unwanted visitors! Be very diligent about putting away any food after you eat it and keep your countertops and floors clean. Take out your trash regularly and if you have pets, don’t leave their food out overnight.

Washing hands frequently doesn’t just prevent colds, it can keep bugs away also. Never touch cabinets, drawers or open the fridge while you are preparing food without first washing your hands. The remnants on your fingers can leave a tempting scent for lurking insects or even provide them with a good meal.

If you’re trying to battle a mouse or rat problem on your own, keep this in mind: mice and rats will eat almost anything. Bits of meat, jelly, peanut butter, cheese and other foods are going to be effective in traps. You can get rid of food that has gone bad by using it to bait the traps as well.

Hopefully you have discovered some very useful information in this article; pest control is a menacing issue no home owner or apartment dweller should have to put up with. Use the tips listed here or consult a professional if necessary. Reclaim your home by finding a permanent solution to pest problems now.


Bed Bugs Continue to Plague New York City Subway

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Bed bugs invade hotels, and your suit case when you travel

After causing significant problems in August, bedbugs continue to plague New York City’s subway system, having survived the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s extermination efforts. Now, subway workers and unions are demanding that the MTA establish a regular schedule for subway car cleaning.


“The MTA is losing the war on bed bugs,” said chairman Joe Costales of the Transport Workers Union Local 100.


In August, there were 21 different bedbug sightings, which affected the A, L, N, Q, 3, 4, 5, and 6 lines. Though most of the sightings were on subway cars, there were sightings of the fiendish bugs in subway worker rooms and offices.


Upon investigation of the reports, the MTA did indeed find bedbugs and fumigated 16 of their trains.


However, the bloodsucking devils survived. Since September 3rd, the MTA has received reports of bedbugs on board three R trains, and has taken the trio out of service. Additionally, the MTA sent an A train to a rail yard following another bedbug sighting.


Consequentially, Costales and Kevin Harrington, a Local 100 vice president, have not only demanded that the MTA establish a regular schedule for cars to be sprayed, but also asked for the fumigation of the entire fleet and for more thorough cleanings.


Such demands are far from unreasonable, considering how quickly bedbugs can multiply and spread. In fact, the insects can lay up to as many as five eggs in just one day and more than 500 over their lifetime. In the meantime, they can hitch rides on clothing, living there for up to 30 days without needing to feed. Regular, thorough cleanings are one of the only ways to help ensure that bedbugs do not continue to plague the subway system.


MTA spokesman Kevin Ortiz, though, said that would not alter its course of action.


“We continue to follow the same protocol,” he said. “Once we receive a report of a sighting, the train is taken out of service and inspected. In most cases, the car is then treated, even in cases where no bugs are found.”

These inspections are often done visually, but the MTA has also been known to bring in a pest control service that uses a bedbug-sniffing dog.


“Regular fumigation of cars would be a waste of time and resources considering we have not discovered an infestation anywhere in the system,” argued Ortiz, “and fumigating would only be as good as the next time a person walks into the system carrying a bug.”

Of course, considering that this course of action failed to be effective in August, it’ll likely be less than effective in September.


What does “eco-friendly” pest control mean?

Many people in need of pest extermination services wonder what is meant by “eco-friendly pest control” or “green” pest control. Is it truly safe for the environment, or for humans? Are the chemicals really effective in controlling unwanted critters? How does it work? What makes this type of pest control different from traditional methods?
To put it in one sentence, eco-friendly pest control simply means practicing pest control in a way that is sensitive to the environment, doing as little harm as possible. As you’ll see, this isn’t just about the chemicals used, but the way that they’re used.


EPA-approved pesticides


“Old-school” pest control methods typically involve spraying of large amounts of pesticide over and around the affected area, often without any thought of possible unintended effects. This method damages the environment, pollutes the soil, kills more than just the targeted critters, and frequently creates more health issues than the pests themselves would have caused! Today, the EPA has approved certain substances to target specific pests, and when used properly, these products are just as effective at controlling unwanted rodents or bugs without the environmental damage or health risks.


Precision application


Practicing “green” pest control is not just about using the right product, but also about applying that product correctly. This involves the pest control company doing a thorough inspection of the home or business, identifying problem areas, and strategically applying the product, rather than taking the “wide blanket” approach. This takes a little more effort on the part of the exterminator, but the positive effects on the environment and your health of those in your household make it well worth it.


Integrated Pest Management


A key element in eco-friendly pest control, Integrated Pest Management (or IPM) involves creating and implementing a tailor-made plan based on your specific needs to rid your home of pests. This can involve use of pesticides in targeted areas, non-chemical controls like traps, sealing off possible entrance paths for pests, preventative measures like proper food storage, strategic re-visits at various life-cycle stages, and more. The plan differs for every situation, and your pest control professional will create a plan that will effectively control and eliminate pests with as little damage to the environment as possible.


In Northwest Arkansas, the leader in eco-friendly pest control is NWA Ladybug Pest Control. They’re a woman-owned company with a high dedication to eco-friendly practices; they can be reached for a free inspection and quote by calling


Stephanie Arwine

Stephanie Arwine


(479) 696-9791

Winged Termites & Ants


Termite shelter tubes on foundation wall

Signs of Termite Infestation


  • Presence of any winged termites indoors (you may discover termites’ on the ground and/or their discarded wings)
  • Winged termites are attracted to light; so, they may often be seen around doors and windows
  • Earthen (mud) tubes on foundation walls, floor joints, sill plates, etc.
  • Ripples or sunken traces behind wall coverings
  • Wood that sounds hollow when tapped
  • Cracked or bubbling paint, etc.



There are instances where there are no visible indications of termite infestation. Confirmation often requires the keen eye of an experienced termite inspector. If you suspect any potential infestation in your home, call us to check if it is a termite issue and whether it is active.


Ladybug Pest Control


How to combat Termites


Ladybug Pest Control is your trusted partner for all your termite-related issues. With our latest and most effective termite defense products, you can have your peace of mind. Our specialists undergo rigorous training with some of the most advanced equipment in the industry. They are experienced and qualified to assess your unique situation, to identify the root of the problem and to prescribe the right treatment option for you coupled with maximum protection and minimum inconvenience. Be it hammer drills, sub slab injectors, rodding devices, termite baiting or soil-applied liquid termiticides. Our highly-trained specialists are capable of dealing with your problem in the most efficient way, customized to your individual needs.


For the best termite protection, schedule a termite inspection by our staff today!









What is the difference between Natural and Organic Pest Control?

Understanding Natural & Organic Pest Control



In today’s society there is a big emphasis on using natural, organic, non-toxic, or “green” products. In the pest control industry each of these terms can mean something very different. Before starting a pest control program one should consider what their goal actually is. Is the goal to use only organic products (organic food processing facilities)? Is the goal to use only natural products? Or is the goal to institute a program that is environmentally friendly?

Natural pest control products have grown in popularity over the past several years, bringing new all natural and organic products that are safer than and just as effective as professional grade chemically based products. Organic pest control products offer an excellent alternative to chemical pest control for the environmentally conscious, using 100% all-natural ingredients to protect the health of people, pets, and the environment. Here at Do My Own Pest Control we sell a variety of professional brands such as EcoSmart, Nisus, MotherEarth and more.  Choose dusts such as diatomaceous earth, baits containing new Reduced-Risk chemicals with ultra-low toxicity, and traps that are completely chemical-free.

Natural Insecticides and Natural Pesticides

A natural pesticide is made up of materials that occur in nature and are left virtually unchanged for our use. Most of these products contain materials that are derived from plants, but several products also contain minerals – mostly dust products. Natural is not the same thing as organic. A natural product may or may not be organic depending on how the product was made.


Organic Insecticides and Organic Pesticides

An organic pesticide is a product produced in accordance with The Organic Act and its regulations. An organic pesticide, like natural pesticides, are made up of materials that occur in nature and are left virtually unchanged for our use. And just like natural products, organic products are also “toxic”, though they may have a low toxicity rate for warm blooded animals. (At a certain level, just about any chemical will have a toxic effect on warm blooded animals, even water).

Many people make the mistake of assuming that “natural” automatically means safe or safer to use than other synthetic products. This is not true. Arsenic is a natural product yet is not considered environmentally friendly or safe for use around homes.


Looking for a pest company that provides natural and safe pest control in NW Arkansas?


Look no further.


Call today for a free estimate    479-696-9791


or check out our website at ladybug pest and lawn