Many parks, recreational areas, and outdoor venues in California are home to yellowjacket wasps (Vespula spp.). Yellowjackets are commonly attracted to human food items, creating a serious nuisance and a potential stinging threat. If found, nests (usually underground) can be effectively treated with targeted insecticide applications (e.g., dusts containing pyrethroids). However, baiting could be a feasible alternative method to suppress yellowjackets over a wide area, especially if nests cannot be located. Currently, only one active ingredient (esfenvalerate) is registered for use within bait in California to control yellowjackets,...
Holidays are a time for welcoming family and friends. But what if your loved ones accidentally bring along unwanted guests—bed bugs? These insects are excellent hitchhikers, hiding easily in luggage and sometimes on clothes. Bed bugs can be found in the finest hotels and accommodations such as dormitories, senior living facilities, and nursing homes, both in the United States and overseas.
Whether you are hosting a dinner party or overnight guests, below are a few tips to prepare your home for welcoming visitors and deter unwanted ones.
Make It Easy to Monitor for Bed Bugs
- Clean your space and reduce clutter to minimize hiding places and make it easier to inspect for bed...
Tis the season for holiday travel. As you make reservations for rental accommodations to visit family and friends, we wanted to share a few suggestions to help you avoid bringing bed bugs home with you. Regardless of what type of lodging you choose-- hotel, motel, cabin, or other type of rental-- no place is immune to bed bug introductions or infestations.
We don't wish to alarm you, but we do want to point out that bed bug infestations are on the rise in the United States. Take precautions to save yourself from later issues and costs in case bed bugs do find their way into your home.
When settling into your room
- Before plopping your luggage down on the bed, couch, or floor, we...
Whether you're having a backyard barbecue or enjoying outdoor activities as the weather warms up, it's important to protect yourself from mosquitoes and their bites. Not only can these buzzing insects be a nuisance, certain mosquito species can transmit West Nile virus and other public health threats in California.
Late spring rains followed by warm, sunny days can create the perfect mosquito breeding habitat. Mosquitoes need very little standing water to lay eggs that can hatch in as little as one day. So remember, drain after the rain to fight biting mosquitoes!
What should you do to protect yourself? If...
- Author: Rick Vetter
If you were to ask an audience of more than a few people if they or anyone they know has ever seen or been bitten by a brown recluse spider in California, many hands would be raised. This is quite remarkable because the brown recluse spider has NEVER established breeding populations in California!
The myth of the brown recluse has been generated and sustained by:
- Physician misdiagnoses (where many skin lesions of diverse non-spider origin are blamed on a non-existent spider)
- Media articles that report claims of horrendous bite injury without proof of spider involvement
- Misidentification of harmless brown spiders as brown recluses by the general public as well as "authorities" who lack...