Many people this week are talking about turkeys. But not in the same way as us here at UC IPM.
Wild turkey sightings have gone from being a rare occasion to becoming a common event in recent years, as their populations have exploded in some urban areas of California. These large birds often travel together in flocks, where they cause trouble as they search for food – by scratching and digging in gardens, and leaving their waste behind. Wild turkeys often pose a traffic hazard as they cross streets or walk in roads. They can also be aggressive and may chase or harass people.
Sometimes people think it's neat to have wild turkeys around and may even encourage them by putting out food. However, did you know it is...
Opossums are the only marsupial native to North America and are quite interesting animals. Female marsupials may be seen carrying their young in an abdominal pouch or sometimes on their back. But opossums can also be pests.
This nocturnal animal can be a nuisance in neighborhoods when they dig through trash cans, compost piles, or food dishes intended for pets. If opossums visit your property occasionally, this may not be a cause for concern, unless your pets remain outdoors at night. Opossums will fight with dogs or cats and can inflict serious injury.
Opossums are often hosts for dog and cat fleas, and may carry several diseases including tuberculosis, toxoplasmosis, trichomoniasis and Chagas...
- Author: Andrew Mason Sutherland
[From the Summer issue of the UC IPM Retail Nursery & Garden Center News]
Don't let the bed bugs bite? That's easier said than done, it seems. Bed bugs (Figure 1) continue to be important household pests globally, driving a growing sector of the pest control industry. Professionals have access to effective insecticides and specialized techniques, such as heat treatments, to control bed bug infestations. These services, however, can be expensive: a recent survey revealed the average cost of professional insecticide treatments and heat treatments to be $425 and $1,400,.../span>
If you've ever had ants come indoors, you know what a nuisance they can be when they crawl across kitchen countertops, invade your pet's food bowl, and get into garbage cans.
So, what should you do? Outsmart the ants.
Ants are usually looking for food, water and shelter. Although spraying a pesticide may seem like an easy solution, this won't get rid of the reason the ants are there, and they will be back.
Instead, here are some other things you can do to keep them out and make your house less attractive to ants:
- Find where the ants are entering, then caulk cracks and crevices both indoors and out.
- Wipe up ant trails with soapy water as soon as you see them.
- Store food...
Record-breaking heat continues to scald California, leading many of us to water our landscapes and gardens more. While the water is good for plants and helps us cool down, even the smallest amount of standing water mixed with high temperatures create an ideal climate for mosquito breeding. Use the following tips to help reduce mosquito habitats and protect yourself from bites avoid being bitten.
Tip #1: Mosquitoes need water for the larval stage of their life cycle. Eliminate breeding sites in your yard by:
- Draining any containers that hold standing water; even something as small as a flower pot saucer can harbor mosquitoes.
- Emptying out bird baths once per week.
- Protecting ponds by...