Living in Big Bear means being close to nature, and sometimes nature gets a little too close for comfort. As soon as the weather starts to warm ants begin showing up on kitchen counters. And mice can move into your home without you knowing it. So what can a Big Bear homeowner do to keep pests out of their home and yard? Here are a few tips for keeping Mother Nature in her place.
Keep It Clean
The best way to control pests is to keep your home and yard as clean as possible. Mice and bugs are attracted to food and if you want to keep them out don’t leave food out. A clean kitchen won’t hold much interest to ants and roaches, and while mice can chew through boxes to get the food inside, they’re less likely to come around in the first place if you keep food containers sealed and crumbs swept up. And true to their name, fruit flies generally only come around if you’ve got fruit ripening or rotting out in the open.
Cleanliness also goes a long way in dealing with outdoor pests too: If you want to keep mosquitoes out of your yard, start by getting rid of any standing water on your property. An upside-down trash can lid filled with rainwater could be a nursery for thousands of mosquitoes.
Chemicals and Poisons
Most people, especially if they have children or pets, want to avoid using poisons in their home. But chemicals are some of the most effective store-bought ways to control bugs. Sprays are effective but may be hard to control. Boric acid, in powder or chalk stick form, works very well on roaches and ants. You can buy a bottle of the powder for a few dollars, and it often comes in a “puffer” bottle that blows it into cracks and crevices where roaches dwell. Bugs will pick it up on their bodies as they crawl through it and ingest it while grooming.
Vinegar Fly Trap
The saying, “You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar” isn’t really true. One common DIY fly trap is to put some vinegar (apple cider vinegar is a common suggestion) in a cup and cover it with a lid or plastic wrap with holes poked in it. The flies will enter through the holes and get stuck in the vinegar.
Mice and Rodents
A hungry cat may catch a few of your unwanted guests but experts say that pet food is one of the big attractions for rodents. If mice do show up in your home, purchase some traps and place them near food storage areas. When my parents were infested a few years ago they used peanut butter in their traps and they were rodent free in a matter of days.
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