A boost to an already busy time

CLEVELAND – As summer draws to a close, PCT spoke to pest control professionals from various parts of the country to find out how this summer’s weather has impacted pest pressure – and therefore on business. It was another summer of extreme weather and generally good news for pest control companies.

Several PMPs said it was a rollercoaster summer in terms of weather. “Oh, it was a crazy spring – cooler than normal,” said Bob Richardson, entomologist at McCarthy Pest Control, St. Charles Mo. “And then it was extremely hot, which I think has a bit hurt our ant business. Smelly house ants are our #1 breadwinner and they were down. But we still did well this summer.

Several parts of the country, including Texas, experienced extreme heat and drought conditions. Eric Melass, president of Killum Pest Control, Houston, Texas, said Greater Houston had triple-digit temperatures for more than three-quarters of the days each June and July. “We’re starting to see quite a bit of activity for the native crazy ants. Apart from the technicians who have to work in this exceptional heat, the summer activity has been excellent. We are super busy.

Also in Texas, Jason Eicher said the Versacor team, based in Southlake, Texas, believes the brutal heat has contributed to increased pest activity. “These hot and dry conditions forced the pests to alter their normal behaviors in finding food and water.”

Along the Gulf Coast, Bruno Milanese, Bay Pest Control, Ocean Springs, Miss., said his year started strong and didn’t let up. In May, he said his service area had experienced the biggest and longest Formosan termite swarming season in many years. “Also, rodent and insect calls have been much higher this year. The weather in the southern gulf region was very hot and humid. Together, these two elements constitute privileged breeding grounds for all insect species.

Pest control professionals in Florida did not report extreme weather temperatures playing a significant role this year. However, the region has not been affected by hurricanes or tropical storms – weather events that cause huge business disruptions. Brian Westcott, Kingfish Pest Control, Ponte Vedra, Florida, noted that in northeast Florida, “local conditions have been favorable for mosquito activity, which has translated into a 54% growth services during the same period last year”.

Out West, Caleb Tennenbaum, Arizona Pest Control, Tucson, Arizona, said pest pressure has been significant for the company this summer. “Termite calls are up 25%,” he said. “We had one of our wettest summers on record last summer, and I think that’s extending and playing a role this summer.”

And further west in California, Greg Bausch of American City Pest & Termite in Los Angeles said it was wetter than normal “and we know humidity has an effect on pests.” I saw lots of flying pests, ants, and even cockroaches, and I think they could all be impacted by the humidity.

One PCO who reported a cooler than normal summer was Ken Hogarth, Hogarth’s Pest Control, Traverse City, Michigan. This resulted in “everything being a bit behind this year. Right now we are seeing a lot of wasp activity, and we usually see [wasp activity] sooner.” Despite the cooler conditions, he described last summer as “busy” and he said the business had benefited from being proactive and stockpiling products and supplies in anticipation of chain shortages. supply.

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