Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is a sustainable, science-based strategy that minimizes risk and damage from pests by utilizing a thorough knowledge of ecosystems, organisms, and the relationship they have with their environments. It is a systematic program of inspection, identification, communication and problem solving.
The IPM strategies that are practiced by Graduate Pest Control Technicians are steeped in the years of college education, science and over 38 years of practical experience
Inspection and Monitoring
The inspection for an established IPM program is designed to allow the IPM technician to conduct a visual examination of established monitoring stations, and the surrounding environment to interpret and correctly identify any situation that has occurred since the last inspection. Speaking to people during the inspection allows the IPM technician to become aware of a possible problem and to look for clues that maybe causing the problem.
Proper Identification of Activity
During the inspection the technician is looking to see what has been trapped or left behind by a pest. The proper identification of trapped insects and the possible presents of rodents will help in the proper treatment method needed to remove the pest problem. The technician is also looking for structural deficiencies and sanitation problems that may be contributing to the pest problem.
Habitat modification is the science of exclusion and repair. The addition of a screen over an air vent can eradicate the presence of birds, insects, and bats. The sealing of a hole around a pipe can stop a rodent or insect infestation. Repairing a leak in a water pipe can stop the presence of mosquitoes. The caulking of cracks and crevices can help reduce the presence of cockroaches and ants. The identification and removal of unsanitary conditions can help reduce a rodent population. The placement of a door seal can stop rodents and insects from entering a building. The use of a vacuum to remove rodent droppings or dead insects helps in removing the possibility of insect or rodent disease created by allergens. The use of a vacuum also aides in the inspection process. The use of bird spikes and netting can help remove a bird population from a structure.
All of these techniques plus others can either reduce or eliminate the availability of one or more of the basic fundamentals needed for a pest problem to develop and survive.
Habitat modification and trap monitoring are the foundation to every successful IPM program. The decision to use a pesticide in an IPM program is only made after extensively exploring other alternatives. This decision is not taken lightly. The use is very site selective and target specific, where the pesticide is necessary to assist in the pest elimination process of an IPM Program.The type of formula that is chosen is based on a pest’s feeding habits, behavior patterns and type of metamorphosis. The use of a rodenticide in a tamper resistant bait station is inconspicuously placed in an area where rodents are feeding and will help remove a rodent population while protecting people and their pets. Using an insecticide with a crack and crevice injector allows small amounts of insecticide to be placed directly into harborage areas where insects are mostly likely found. The use of insect baits and/or gel insecticides may be used to remove insects based on their feeding habits. The use of a sex-sterilent may be used to reduce an insect population by interfering with insect development causing the insect population to become sterile.
Communications and Documentation.
No job is finished until the paperwork is done. A completed printout of a computer-generated worksheet will be emailed to the person responsible for the pest control program. This worksheet includes: pest findings found, structural and housekeeping deficiencies, corrective measures taken, and pesticide usage. A verbal explanation of any inspection findings and corrective measures will also be discussed with the client. In cases where a problem can not be corrected by a technician (plumbing leak) this information will be given to the person responsible for the program so that the problem can be corrected.
Each pest problem has its own unique situation and solution. Each pest problem also has very similar variables which are used to solve the puzzleArnold Katz
Intro to Entomology: A Brief Study on Insects
The animal kingdom is divided into groups called phylum (sing: phyla), which are in turn broken down into sub-groups known as orders. The phyla that Insects belong to is called the Phyla Arthropoda, which includes creatures like spiders, millipedes, centipedes, and crabs. The order that insects belong to is aptly called the Order Insecta, and the specific study of it is known as Entomology.
The principal characteristics for animals in the Order Insecta include but are not limited to the following characteristics:
- Body Segmentation
- Spiders have two body regions
- Insects have three body regions
- Paired joined segmented appendages (antenna, mouth-parts, legs )
- Bilateral symmetry (Dissect an insect down the middle and both sides will resemble the other. One eye, three legs, one antenna, etc.) a chitinous exoskeleton ( a hardened outer shell)
The study of Entomology included:
- Insect anatomy, physiology, morphology, behavior, development, classification, nomenclature, and identification.
- Related field of study included medical entomology, agricultural practices and other general sciences and humanities.
The study of Pest Control included:
- Proper identification, biology and control methods of vertebrate and invertebrate pests.
- Weed identification, biology and control methods.
- The study of pesticides included: formulations, toxicities, hazards, beneficial uses, limitations, and their impact on the environment.
- Pesticide label comprehension, equipment application techniques and the understanding of Federal and New York State Regulations and the preparation for state testing and licensing are all part of the study of Pest Control.
Education is the foundation upon which a successful IPM program is based on. The State of New York requires that all licensed pest control technicians and companies must attain a minimum of continuing education credits to satisfy the different categories a technician is licensed in. Continuing education helps the certified technician stay abreast of New York State regulations, refreshes core information, and updates to new products and methodologies when they become available.