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Pest prevention important after heavy rain

Posted at 10:41 PM, Jun 04, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-04 22:41:14-04

CAPE CORAL, Fla. - The large amounts of rain created a situation that might leave you with some unwanted houseguests: bugs!!

Alberto's downpours have kept local pest control technicians busy. They've received plenty of calls following the storms.

"Our phone calls are up about 40 percent because of the rains," Ivan Starkey said.

Starkey is an operations manager for Fort Myers Pest Control. He said humans aren't the only ones who like dry and comfortable conditions.

"When we get rains like that, it flushes them out of the areas they live in and force them to come to our doors instead," Starkey said.

4 In Your Corner recruited Starkey for some preventive measures you can take to try and keep them out of your home during rainy season.

His first suggestion is to make sure potential entry points are sealed shut. Starkey wanted you to focus on vulnerable areas like sliding glass doors, door frames, and windows.

"Palmetto bugs can flatten themselves up like a piece of paper," Starkey said. "They can slide in through door frames, sliding doors, and windows if they're not tightly secured," he added.

Starkey suggested to keep a close eye on your A/C unit. Pests could use the wiring and vents as a potential entry point to your attic. Foam could stop them in their tracks.

"You want this foam around your home," he said.

Starkey said outside lights attract pests. It is also a good idea to keep a buffer zone between your home and plants around it. You also need to pay attention to how close tree limbs come to your property.

"They turn branches touching your home into bridges," Starkey said. "Rodents, ants, and roaches use them as pathways and crawl back and forth," he added.

Starkey doesn't want you to forget to drain standing water following a storm. Pots and trash bins act as perfect breeding grounds for mosquito larvae. The more proactive you are, the more the bugs stay out.

"The more you can do around your home, you're going to help yourself and the pest control technician who is doing the job," he said.