Pest Advice Blog

Carpenter Ants: Defeating the Army Behind Your Walls

Carpenter Ants: Defeating the Army Behind Your Walls

Have you ever wondered what a carpenter ant really is? We can guarantee you that they are not building beautiful furniture pieces. In fact, quite the opposite. You may think, “oh, it’s just an ant,” but these ants will give you something to worry about it if not taken care of.

Carpenter ants and termites look for new homes in the summer

Carpenter ant 6-04-18Like termites, in late winter and early spring, young adult carpenter ants, known as alates, swarm to mate and start new colonies. Male and female reproductives mate and form new colonies. These new colonies need places to nest and raise their broods. Unlike termites, these sometimes large black and brown to reddish bi-colored ants do not eat wood, but burrow through it, creating galleries and tunnels, causing structural damage to homes.

Measuring from .25 inches to around .75 inches, carpenter ants need a constant source of moisture to survive. Attracted to damp wood around your property or constantly moist boards and siding, carpenter ants like to nest in the damp and rotting wood outside your home, but will move inside by burrowing through damp wood or finding cracks in wood on the exterior of your home. Sometimes, they even take over termite colonies or old termite galleries.

Carpenter ant colonies include a main/parent colony and can include several satellite colonies. While carpenter ants may nest outside and forage up to 100 yards in search of food, satellite colonies may exist in your walls, attics and around moist areas in your home.

Outside, carpenter ants prefer proteins, feeding on live and dead insects and they like the sweet honeydew produced by aphids and some scale insects. In your home, carpenter ants are attracted to fatty foods, meats and sweets like jelly and syrups, foraging between sunset and midnight in your kitchen.

Signs of a carpenter ant issue

Signs of carpenter ant infestations include:

  • Discarded wings of swarmers near windowsills, baseboards and vents.
  • Active swarming indoors.
  • Sawdust piles made by boring through wood, and the ant excavating remains of dead ants and frass (sawdust).
  • Irregular, wide, clean, ragged surfaced galleries in wood surfaces.
  • Active foraging in your home at night or other low-light situations such as early mornings.

Contact a professional pest control company to eliminate carpenter ants and termites

Carpenter ants-02If you suspect carpenter ant activity in your home, contact a professional pest control company, such as Truly Nolen to schedule a free pest inspection. Although carpenter ants and termites look similar, carpenter ants have a defined waist, between their thorax and abdomen, while termites are more broadly connected. Carpenter ant alates’ sport a pair of upper wings that are much larger than their lower wings, whereas both pairs of termite alates’ wings are relatively the same size.

Also, carpenter ants have bent antennae but termite antennae are straight with no bend in them. Because carpenter ants may be causing damage to your home that is expensive to repair, we recommend contacting a trained, certified pest professional to inspect your property and design a plan to eradicate carpenter ants from your property.

Truly Nolen targets nests with innovative IPM system

Truly Nolen’s innovative Integrated Pest Management systems (IPM) utilize people and pet friendly treatments and methods that address primary and satellite nests. Our technicians are trained to identify potential carpenter ant areas and use materials that not only address your current infestation but target nests to eliminate colonies at their sources, killing off the queen, the brood and many worker ants. Without queens or secondary reproductive to take the queen’s place, reproduction stops and the colony collapses.

Carpenter ant prevention guidelines

To prevent carpenter ant invasions, keep these guidelines in mind:

  • Repair or replace leaky faucets and other moisture sources around your home.
  • Remove standing water from porches, decks and other poor water drainage areas.
  • Regularly inspect crawlspaces, attics and basements for moisture.
  • Seal or caulk all cracks and crevices around your foundation, as well as around windows and doors.
  • Remove all landscaping debris (leaves, litter, mulch) and construction materials that are against the house and stack firewood at least 20 feet away from your structure.
  • Keep tree branches and shrubs trimmed away from your house as they provide bridges for carpenter ants intent on moving indoors.
  • Regularly inspect decks, wooden storage sheds, old tree stumps and other wood on your property for signs of carpenter ant activity, like small holes in wooden surfaces.

This summer, when you are prepping your home for a new coat of paint and discover wood shavings or evidence of wood damage, contact your local Truly Nolen location to schedule a free pest inspection. Our innovative eco-friendly Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach arms our technicians with the knowledge and materials to protect your home from carpenter ant colonies.

While a fresh coat of paint creates great curb appeal and can help to weatherproof your house, it can also help protect your home from pests that are attracted to damp wood, such as termites, carpenter bees and carpenter ants. Ask about Truly Nolen’s Four Seasons Pest Control service approach to pest control that helps to identify and treat potential pest issues with seasonal visits that monitor and prevent pests from entering your home, creating a pest barrier around your property. Contact your Truly Nolen professionals today and enjoy your summer!

Truly Nolen Seeing More Indoor Pests Due to Atypical Atlanta Summer

With hotter than normal temperatures and drought like conditions over the past few months, recent scattered rains have caused something else to scatter inside Atlanta-area homes – pests!

“This atypical Atlanta Summer in terms of weather has caused ants to pop up all over the place,” said Chris Ashley, Truly Nolen franchisee, Canton. “When rain follows a long drought period, this is typically when people start seeing a rise in ants in their homes.”

Ants are always looking for food when they do invade a home, so keeping food sources under wraps and stored properly is one way to help keep them at bay before calling for a professional. In addition to ants, Ashley said several other insects are heading indoors due to the abnormal weather pattern.

“During some of my recent pest inspections, we have come across American and smokey brown roaches, earwigs, centipedes and beetles that normally prefer living outdoors in landscape areas,” Ashley said. “Other than ants, none of these are often spotted indoors, which is why the drought followed by scattered rain is the main culprit.”

As a homeowner, there are measures you can take to minimize the conditions that are conducive to pests and help reduce the likelihood of an infestation. From eliminating wood-to-soil contact wherever possible to diverting water from the foundation of the home, prevention is key. In addition, the Truly Nolen website contains a pest identification section to help users in case they need to identify a problem in their home: https://www.trulynolen.com/pest-identifier/.

“Whether you end up trying to handle the problem yourself or calling a professional to conduct a pest inspection, the atypical summer weather ensures a surge in pests sooner than later,” said Ashley. For more information, visit https://www.trulynolen.com/locations/ga/atlanta/atlanta.asp or call our North Atlanta service office at (678) 561-2847.

About Truly Nolen
Founded in 1938, Tucson, Arizona-based Truly Nolen of America is the largest family-owned pest control company in the United States. Truly Nolen has over 80 branch offices in Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas and Utah. The company also has independently owned and operated franchises in an ever-growing number of territories including Kentucky, Georgia, New Jersey, Canada, Puerto Rico and over 60 countries. To learn more about Truly Nolen, visit www.trulynolen.com or follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/TrulyNolen) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/TrulyNolen).

Truly Nolen Pest Control Promotes Bohne to Director, Domestic Franchising

Truly Nolen Pest Control recently announced the promotion of Greg Bohne to Director of Domestic Franchising. He will be based at the company’s Tucson, Ariz. Corporate headquarters at 3636 E. Speedway Blvd.  Bohne takes over for longtime Truly Nolen employee Ron DeSear, who is semi-retiring. DeSear will remain working with the company on special projects.

Bohne joined the company in August 2013 where he excelled in the Manager-in-Training program and previously managed both the Tucson and North Tucson service offices. He moved to the domestic franchise division in August 2015. Previously, Bohne was a regional manager for an automotive fluid recycling company for four years and the president of a billiard table manufacturer and retailer for 12 years.

Some of Bohne’s new responsibilities will include helping develop strategy and tactics for the company’s franchise growth plan, helping franchisees with creative content for their markets, and continuing to help make franchisees as successful as possible. “I am excited to join our current Franchisees and support them in meeting their growth objectives as well as grow our current footprint of Franchise locations,” said Bohne. “I believe our unique culture as a company makes us attractive to potential franchisees, and having personally experienced Fortune 200 and privately held companies, none have come close to matching the fantastic culture we have here.”

“Greg excelled as a manager, and over the last year, it became apparent that his knack of providing support for our franchisees any way he could was greatly appreciated by them as well as our internal team,”  said Greg Weatherly, Truly Nolen Executive Vice President. “We are excited to have Greg as the leader of domestic franchising and look forward to the continued growth of this division.”

About Truly Nolen
Founded in 1938, Tucson, Arizona-based Truly Nolen of America is the largest family-owned pest control company in the United States. Truly Nolen has over 80 branch offices in Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas and Utah. The company also has independently owned and operated franchises in an ever-growing number of territories including Kentucky, Georgia, New Jersey, Canada, Puerto Rico and over 60 countries. To learn more about Truly Nolen, visit www.trulynolen.com or follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/TrulyNolen) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/TrulyNolen).

Mosquito Madness in Charlotte

Mosquito sucking blood
Charlotte, NC is nationally ranked one of the worst cities for mosquitoes. High temperatures and moist conditions attract mosquitoes, and standing water allows them to breed. Mosquitoes can be identified by their slender bodies and long legs. Adults can live from 10 days all the way up to 6 months. With summer in full force, taking a proactive approach against these pests is key to preventing bites.

Do Mosquitoes Favor Some More Than Others?

An article from Smithsonian magazine explains that some individuals are more prone to mosquito bites than others. Individuals who have type O blood type are especially favorable to mosquitoes. Larger individuals who emit more carbon dioxide when they breathe are also on this list. This group includes tall people and the obese. Elevated body temperatures, excess sweat and bacteria on the skin are also contributing factors.

Prevention and Types of Mosquito-borne Illnesses

Mother Applying Bug Spray To Daughter
Families in the Charlotte area should take precautions against mosquitoes, mainly during the months of June, July and August, to reduce chances of the transfer of mosquito-borne illnesses. Mosquito bites are known to spread diseases and cause allergic reactions. Some mosquito-related illnesses that have been reported are Zika, Malaria, Encephalitis, Chikungunya Virus and West Nile Virus. Over a thousand people have died from West Nile since 1999. There have been three confirmed cases of Chikungunya Virus in North Carolina with symptoms of fever, headache, muscle ache and joint pain. If you have been bitten and are experiencing any enhanced symptoms, we urge you to seek immediate medical attention.

Here are some simple tips to keep in mind that can help you avoid and prevent the dangers and annoyance of mosquitoes:

  • Wear long sleeves and white or light colored clothing when camping or outdoors for an extended period of time.
  • Steer clear of wearing flowery fragrances before spending time outdoors to decrease your chances of becoming a target.
  • Place citronella plants and candles on patios and porches. Chemical-free repellents also come in handy for warding off mosquitoes.
  • Mosquitoes breed in standing water so keep an eye out for pooling water in your yard and stay up to date on pool upkeep if you have a swimming pool at home.

Beat the Bite!

Pest control services, such as Truly Nolen Charlotte, offer mosquito mitigation for residential and commercial customers. Expert pest removal agents search for moist areas and conditions conducive to mosquito breeding around the bite site to begin a program designed to control mosquitoes through larval to adult stages. If avoidance and prevention fail to defeat the problem, reach out to Truly Nolen Charlotte at 704-910-2936 for answers.

New Headquarters “Global Sign”, Three Openings since December Have Truly Nolen International On Course for a Busy 2016

Shortly after the Truly Nolen International Training Center opened at 1800 33rd Street in Orlando in late-2015, Jose Lutz, CEO, Truly Nolen International, was looking for something special to draw attention from passing vehicles on Interstate 4. With the recent installation of TNI’s “Global Sign” and three more grand openings, 2016 has already been a successful one.

In conjunction with the sign company that designed, fabricated, and installed the unique project, the head-turning sign is a 7.5 foot-diameter expanded-polystyrene ball surrounded by aluminum in a 12 foot-diameter outer ring. The sign is held in place by 11 x 11 x 6-ft. foundation footers filled in with 35 cubic yards of concrete.

“Once we moved into our new building late last year, we always had a vision for a sign that would stand out and make drivers and passengers take a second look while they pass by our office,” said Lutz. “Since the sign was installed at the beginning of April, we have received at least a few calls a week complimenting us on the sign’s unique design!”

The franchises that have opened since January 1, 2016 are located in Las Tablas, Panama; Maputo, Mozambique; and the Isle of Cape Verde. These three openings bring the company’s total to 207 offices in 62 countries.

Offering the same quality service for which it is known domestically, Truly Nolen International, which employs over 3,500 around the globe, has the largest footprint of any pest control company in the world, in terms of countries in which they operate. Currently, 90 percent of the company’s international branches serve businesses both for active and preventative protection from pest issues.

For more information about Truly Nolen International Franchising, call (800) 771-6423 or visit www.trulynoleninternational.com.  

About Truly Nolen
Founded in 1938, Tucson, Arizona-based Truly Nolen of America is the largest family-owned pest control company in the United States. Truly Nolen has over 80 branch offices in Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas and Utah. The company also has independently owned and operated franchises in an ever-growing number of territories including Kentucky, Georgia, New Jersey, Canada, Puerto Rico and over 60 countries. To learn more about Truly Nolen, visit www.trulynolen.com or follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/TrulyNolen) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/TrulyNolen).

Truly Nolen Pest Control Promotes Sheffield to Manager, Pinellas Park Service Office

Truly Nolen Pest Control recently announced the promotion of Chris Sheffield to Manager of the company’s Pinellas Park, Fla. service office at 9292 49th Street North.

Sheffield joined the company in July 2015 and while in the Manager-in-Training program, he excelled as the temporary manager of the Jacksonville service office until a full-time manager was hired there. Previously, Sheffield was self-employed for 10 years as the owner of a mobile oil change company that marketed to large fleets servicing from Orlando to Homestead. In addition, he attended Tallahassee Community College and Florida State University. .

Some of Sheffield’s new responsibilities will include helping the service office gain more visibility with the local Pinellas Park community as well as nurturing the company’s core values throughout his team. “What I like most about Truly Nolen is the family culture,” said Sheffield. “I am most excited about rebuilding our service office team to better serve our customers and prepare for future growth.”

“In less than one year, Chris has accepted every challenge we have asked of him and he helped get our street-team branding program off the ground in the Orlando area during his training,” said Tim Phillips, Truly Nolen District Manager, Central Florida. “He has a wealth of business knowledge and terrific leadership skills, and we are happy to have him as a member of our Pinellas Park team.”

About Truly Nolen
Founded in 1938, Tucson, Arizona-based Truly Nolen of America is the largest family-owned pest control company in the United States. Truly Nolen has over 80 branch offices in Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas and Utah. The company also has independently owned and operated franchises in an ever-growing number of territories including Kentucky, Georgia, New Jersey, Canada, Puerto Rico and over 60 countries. To learn more about Truly Nolen, visit www.trulynolen.com or follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/TrulyNolen) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/TrulyNolen).

Keeping Blood Suckers Away During the Summer

mosquito control during the summer
Mosquitoes are a true sign that summer has arrived and they’re likely to ruin your afternoon of outdoor fun if you’re not prepared.

The American Mosquito Control Association says mosquitoes are the deadliest animals

The American Mosquito Control Association says mosquitoes are the deadliest animalsAccording to The American Mosquito Control Association, or AMCA, “Mosquitoes cause more human suffering than any other organism – over one million people worldwide die from mosquito-borne diseases every year.” Mosquitoes are responsible for outbreaks of malaria, throughout history, as far back as 2700 BC, according to the AMCA. Contained to tropical climates today, malaria obstructed the settlement of the US east coast colonies and wasn’t effectively controlled until the 1940s.

Mosquito-borne illnesses afflict animals as well as humans

Mosquito-borne illnesses afflict animals as well as humansTo make matters worse, mosquitoes carry diseases and parasites that afflict our four-legged friends, as well, especially dogs and horses. While we’ve learned to protect ourselves from mosquitoes with bug repellants, proactive prevention measures and the help of a professional pest control company, such as Truly Nolen, mosquitoes are responsible for more human deaths than any other insect, rodent or animal. In addition to the ancient diseases, malaria and yellow fever outbreaks and the current Zika Virus scare, mosquitoes are responsible for transmitting many other diseases, including:

  • Chikungunya
  • Dog Heartworm
  • Dengue Fever
  • Yellow Fever
  • Eastern Equine Encephalitis
  • St. Louis Encephalitis
  • La Crosse Encephalitis
  • Western Equine Encephalitis
  • West Nile Virus

Mosquitoes like your backyard’s stagnant water

Mosquitoes like your backyard’s stagnant waterUnfortunately, urban environments, like your backyard can lend themselves well to making excellent conditions for mosquito havens. The incredible thing is that some homeowners unknowingly and unwittingly set up lovely breeding grounds for mosquitoes. Check your property for areas of stagnant or standing water. Extra gardening pots, old tires, even birdbaths can create excellent mosquito-growing areas, along with other uncirculated bodies of water including retention ponds, boggy areas, long-standing mud puddles, lakes, ponds, fountains and open rain retention barrels. Often overlooked, flowerbeds with residual water standing in flowering plants and in the catch plate at the bottom of planters, can also be inviting to mosquitoes. It is important to note that generally, water needs to be standing for 7 or more days and a cup is enough to create a breeding ground. Interestingly, of course, there are also mosquitoes in the west that don’t need standing water at all to breed, the females can lay eggs in mud.

Made in the shade

Made in the shadeShady, damp areas around your yard and home can create favorable conditions for mosquitoes, as well. Mosquitoes are also attracted to and can commonly be found under thick foliage or in a section of your yard, porch or patio that doesn’t get much sun. Any place protected from the wind and sun can be an invitation to mosquitoes. Additionally, removing debris from around your home can help reduce mosquito populations. Keeping your yard, shrubbery and tree limbs trimmed and eliminating long, unkempt vegetation from around your home and yard can make your yard an unfavorable destination for mosquitoes.

Things homeowners can do to reduce mosquito populations

Things homeowners can do to reduce mosquito populationsWhen it comes to your home, repairing screens and replacing worn screens can go a long way to protecting your loved ones from mosquitoes. Also, many products on the market today can be helpful in reducing your risk for mosquito bites. Citronella plants and citronella oil in tiki torches and outdoor candles, plus organic bug repellants and mosquito-deterring bracelets and other devices can work to ward off those blood-sucking creatures of the summer night. At dusk, at night and early in the morning, wearing long-sleeves and long pants will leave less skin area exposed to mosquitoes, as well.

Treating your yard

Treating your yardTruly Nolen technicians, outfitted with power sprayers or backpack misters treat protected vertical and inverted surfaces of dense vegetation up to a height of 6 feet. Creating a mosquito barrier, our trained and certified technicians treat up to 50 feet around the perimeter of your property.

Entryways and bite sites

Entryways and bite sitesZeroing in on areas within 10 feet of established bite zones, Truly Nolen professionals treat areas around doors and windows up to 3 feet off the ground, as mosquitoes are known to rest in these areas after feasting on pets and people, in preparation for egg-laying.

Addressing reproduction zones and cycles

Mosquito control misting machineTo head off egg-laying, Truly Nolen technicians apply larvicide in small amounts to interrupt mosquito reproduction cycles in moisture-prone areas, in planters, sprinkler heads and other potential breeding sites including ponds, fountains and ditches that show tendencies to retain water. For extra protection for your yard and home against mosquitoes, Truly Nolen can install a programmable misting machine to control and eliminate all adult flying pests around your home.

Trust Truly Nolen

Truly nolen - pest control termitesEven though taking preventative measures to get rid of mosquitoes may keep their numbers down, contacting a reliable and reputable pest control company, such as Truly Nolen can really seal the deal between your home and loved ones and dangerous pests. Contact your local Truly Nolen location for a free inspection for pest identification and to devise a plan customized for your home and family.

Summer is here and you’ve got some outdoor celebrating to do. Remember, preventing stagnant water and moist conditions around your home can help reduce mosquito populations around your property. Enjoy your summer of fun and mosquito-free backyard cookouts and pool parties. Contact your local Truly Nolen location to schedule a free pest inspection today!

Truly Nolen Pest Control Creates Bird Division Covering Arizona, Promotes Srejic to Western Commercial Bird Sales Manager

Truly Nolen Pest Control recently announced the creation of a Western Commercial Bird Division covering Arizona, and the company’s new division will be led by bird expert Andy Srejic.  Srejic’s office will be based in Phoenix at 2711 W. Indian School Road.

Srejic joined the company in April 2016 and has 15 years of pest control industry experience including bird control. Prior to joining Truly Nolen, Srejic worked for Bird Barrier in a regional technical support role to help businesses large and small interested in bird control services. He also specialized in developing successful bird control strategies at complex sites and gained valuable information on new technologies and processes.

Some of Srejic’s new responsibilities will include helping gain more visibility with the company’s Western Commercial division as well as nurturing the company’s core values throughout his team. “One of the main reasons I joined Truly Nolen a few months ago was because of the culture, values and entrepreneurial spirit of the company,” said Srejic. “I am most excited about the opportunity to assist in the growth and expansion of this division thanks to our great team in Arizona and the West.”

“Andy has a strong reputation in the pest control industry of being a bird expert,” said Mike Tanner, Truly Nolen District Manager, Western Commercial. “His talent allows him to help solve any bird issues a business might face, and we are happy to have Andy as the leader of our new Western Commercial Bird Division.”

About Truly Nolen
Founded in 1938, Tucson, Arizona-based Truly Nolen of America is the largest family-owned pest control company in the United States. Truly Nolen has over 80 branch offices in Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas and Utah. The company also has independently owned and operated franchises in an ever-growing number of territories including Kentucky, Georgia, New Jersey, Canada, Puerto Rico and over 60 countries. To learn more about Truly Nolen, visit www.trulynolen.com or follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/TrulyNolen) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/TrulyNolen).


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