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Bed Bug Infestation Forces Student to Leave Home

Filed under: Bed Bug Extermination,Pest Control — admin @ 2:42 pm October 26, 2012

Since late August, Jordan Little has been forced to live on the streets as Merrimac home has been overrun with bed bugs. He and his two other roommates have spent nearly US$3,000 in rent for a house they could not live in.

Moreover, the landlord has ordered to pay for the extermination, which was haphazardly done. The Psychology senior said he signed the lease last July and have paid for rent all through September. Because of their plight, Director of Off-Campus Student Services Dan Ryan together with City of Buffalo inspectors met with the many other students who have been affected by the bed bug infestation in the area.

As a result, he has been left penniless paying for the rent of a home he cannot live in and is forced to sleep on a friend’s couch. He has been working to break the lease but has been unsuccessful so far.

Little relates, “The landlord said he needed the money in order to pay for the extermination. I expected [the exterminator] to spray everything, but he only sprayed the bedrooms. After that, my roommate still got bit.”

According to Buffalo City Building Inspector Charles Didio, the extermination was one improperly and was likely done by an individual who is not a professional exterminator.

While his two other roommates have not indicated where they live, Little is limited in his options as he has no family he can live with in the area. The high prices of North Campus apartments are limiting his options he and his parents are trying to figure out.

Little added, “I didn’t expect things to be like this for the first semester but it is what it is. I’m not fed up with the Heights. I’m just more cautious now.”

Little is also an aspiring singer known by his stage name Jayo LeGrand. This creates special problems as he has to adjust to his friend’s schedule. While he is an active personality on campus, he has to deal with a very unpredictable schedule on top of his uncertain living arrangements.

He related that after moving into the 97 Merrimac St. home he had rented, he went back to New York City to wait out until the opening of the semester. Upon his return, he found out his apartment was infested with bed bugs. After several phone calls, emails and text messages with his landlord known only as “Victor”, the home was scheduled for fumigation on September 8. Unfortunately, the work was poorly done and after some time, the bed bug infestation returned. Now, each room in the home has been stripped bare with thick covering of an unknown pesticide on the bedroom floors. Hundreds of dollars of bedding and furniture are scattered all over the backyard and side porch of the residence due to the bed bug menace.

According Didio, “We don’t usually see them in Buffalo. They more than likely came from somewhere else and were brought here, but there is really no way to tell how they got there.” Didio explains that an adult bed bug of average size grows to the size of a bean and bugs can spread easily and rapidly throughout a home.  He added that the duplex, which can be home for up to six people, cannot be inhabited until the whole house has been properly treated and not just the bedrooms at the top floor.

To this Little responds, “I’ve just got to figure out where I’m moving now. I mean, I can’t stay on a couch forever.”

Bed bugs in a mattress

Aside from the bed bug issue on 97 Merrimac St., other homes have been properly inspected. 240 Merrimac St was found to have serious plumbing and heating issues. The current residents of the home, Zhen Pan and Seng Gao, both second year graduate students of electrical engineering, were dumbfounded to find out that the debris surrounding an open pipe at the basement floor was actually hardened raw sewage.  Didio discovered this after he followed the steady dripping sound and saw a previous sewage drain had backed up. He also found that an individual had attached a lower grade plastic drain to the exterior area of the apartment building. What should have been attached, according to the Buffalo City Building Inspector, was a heat rated PVC boiler exhaust pipe.

To this Didio said, “[The plastic drain] is homemade and not meant to do that.”

Another problem area is 49 Merrimac Street. The resident, Sean McGiveron who is taking up exercise science as a junior, related that his landlord Jeremy Dunn does not respond to his tenant’s complaints in a timely manner.

He intimates, “I don’t want to say he’s bad, but he’s definitely lacking.”

After an inspection of the basement of the home inhabited by McGiveron, the heating ducts were held together with towels and bandages, with windows in the basement broken that can result in drafts and other safety issues.

The roommate of McGiveron, Benjamin DiCesare who is in his third year in accounting, is very much concerned about the mildew and mold from the toilet flooding in the basement.  DiCesare relates, “So we called [Dunn] and he really didn’t do anything about it until weeks later when he popped in at 8 am one morning without notice. “

McGiveron and other students said that the main benefit of living in the Heights is its proximity to the South Campus. He did say “The area is not good at all. My car just got vandalized. Someone threw a garden gnome into my car window and smashed it. I mean, who does that?”

While there are minor violations such as misuse of hasp locks, lack of smoke and detectors and handrails on stairwells, these are but light compared to Little, who up to now is still searching for a bed bug free place to live.

To avoid problems such as these, contact a trusted pest control company. Don’t be fooled by fly-by-night companies who charge cheaply but do haphazard work.

Horizon Pest Control has been in the pest control business for almost 40 years. We have successfully treated homes and offices from bed bug invasion. To learn more about our pest control services, please visit NJ bed bug control.

Keep your home mosquito free next Summer by preparing in Fall

Filed under: Gutter Cleaning,Pest Control — Megan Howard @ 6:31 pm October 22, 2012


mosquito bite

Many people consider fall to be one of the most beautiful times of the year. The leaves change colors, the air is cooler, and the mosquito population is soon to hibernate.  While mosquitoes are rare to be found in the winter, they can still cause quite a problem in the fall and how you deal with them in the fall effects how much they get to bother you in the spring and summer. There is a method of mosquito prevention that is often overlooked by many homeowners. If you have gutters you must know about this cool fall secret.

Being overrun by mosquitoes is a terrible thing, they buzz in your ear and inflict those awful, itchy bites. Worst is the fact that many mosquitoes have helped spread disease. They are even responsible for many cases of human parasite infestations. In many cities the mosquito populations is utterly out of control and those who live in the country are not free of this burden. Yet, the battle against mosquitoes can be won by understanding much about them. One thing about mosquitoes is that they love to lay eggs in standing water.

You might not have a pond or a birdbath in your yard, but if you have stopped up gutters then you have a nice source of standing water for the mosquitoes to enjoy. The whole purpose of gutters is to catch and control the flow of the rain water so that it minimizes damage to the house and surrounding area. When gutters are clogged up the rain that collects in them cannot drain off. Instead it pools up inside the gutters and causes many problems.

Fall is a prime time for gutters to get clogged because of the heavy flow of leaves. Even a perfectly functioning gutter system can get backed up when full of leaves. Yet, many homeowners get frustrated by the amount of leaves that fall around their house and refuse to do something about it until the end of the season, if ever. It is shocking to note just how many homes have gutters clogged to the brim year round and the property owners refuse to do anything about it.

So the mosquitoes find these gutters and fall in love with them. During the fall the mosquitoes get busy laying eggs. That means that people do not have to wait until the springtime to be overrun with mosquitoes. They can just let the water in their gutters stand for a couple of weeks and they will start getting bug bites just about every time they step outside. If they let this continue into the spring and summer months they will find the problem to be much worse. All the eggs will have hatched and the mosquito population in their yard will be much bigger.

Instead, be sure to clean the gutters out after every major leaf fall. If you keep them clean regularly, such maintenance should only take a few short minutes. Removing the leaves is especially easy if you have a power washer. This habit protects both your home and your health. It may possibly even protect your sanity.

Horizon Pest Control offers professional gutter cleaning services to protect your home. To get help or to learn more about our comprehensive services, visit Gutter Cleaning.

Fall Season – Cleaning Your Gutters

Filed under: Gutter Cleaning,Pest Control — Tags: — Megan Howard @ 11:12 pm October 12, 2012

Dirty gutterThis Fall, the one pest everybody should be on the lookout for is the mosquito. They’ve been around for close to 30 million years, and are known all around the world for their irritating bites and penchant for spreading horrible diseases like Malaria, Yellow Fever, and Dengue. Organizations across the world have launched numerous campaigns and initiatives in an attempt to control or eliminate these pests, some more effective than others.

Since the diseases they spread are difficult to treat, and can often be fatal, its important to control their growth wherever possible. In order to do this, we first have to understand how mosquitoes proliferate. Mosquitoes are technically small flies, and like any other fly they go through 4 distinct stages of growth: the egg, larvae, pupa, and finally the adult. It is the first stage that we will focus on here.

GutterMost species of mosquito require pools of stagnant water to lay their eggs in. Some use their eggs to form “rafts” within the water, others lay eggs on the edge of the water, and others still anchor their eggs to aquatic plants. In neighborhoods all across America, gutters, especially poorly maintained and broken-down gutters, are sources of stagnant water and are prime breeding grounds for mosquitoes.

Pools of stagnant water tend to develop in rain gutters with clogged downspouts or rain gutters that aren’t installed properly. Thankfully, they’re easy to clean, and the tools you need can be obtained from any local hardware store. If your rain gutter is not installed properly or needs to be replaced, contact a local contractor to assist you with repairs. By eliminating all possible breeding grounds we can control the growth and spread of mosquitoes.

Horizon Pest Control offers comprehensive gutter cleaning service. We will protect your home from unwanted pests and damage caused by clogged gutters.  To learn more or to set an appointment with us, just click New Jersey Gutter Cleaning.

Protect Your Home from Nuisance Animals

Filed under: Nuisance Wildlife & Animal Control,Pest Management — Megan Howard @ 11:05 pm

Raccoon hidingSome people might find it hard to imagine waking up one morning to discover a four legged animal hanging out in their living room, but for many people it is an all too real occurrence.  In fact there are many different types of wild animals who invade homes and give the people living there the shock of their lifetime. These animals are often called nuisance animals and they can pose some very serious problems. Examples of nuisance animals include skunks, opossums, raccoons, snakes, squirrels, foxes, and coyote. A few homes have even been invaded by bears, deer, and even alligators down south. Read on to learn how to block entry points for these home invaders and keep your property and family safe.

As with anything with your home, it’s usually best to take preventive measures to ensure you stop issues before they become issues. The same goes for preventing animal invasions. As the temperature drops, animals will be looking for safe shelter from cold and wet weather. So now is the time of the season to prevent animals from finding shelter in your home.

There are a lot of ways nuisance animals enter a home that people might not ordinarily think of. It is important to take care of entry points that are obvious to you and make sure they are made inaccessible by these animals. Check the exterior of the home for any signs of holes. These holes may be located near poorly fitting windows and doors, in the side of the wall, and even underneath siding. If you happen to see a hole, be sure to have it repaired immediately. Do not discount the size of a hole because even 2 inches in diameter is enough to let in snakes and other animals.

Another place to look is up on the roof. There could be holes there that let in more than just a little rain. Holes in the roof bring greater potential for home invasion by nuisance animals for homes that have trees nearby. The animals can easily climb the tree to get onto the roof and enter in through a hole. Not taking care to watch out for situations such as this only leaves you open to many problems.

Holes in the roof are not the only entry point at a height. Even the attic vents and the chimney can serve as inviting entry points. Be sure to block these openings without reducing air flow by covering them with a tight wire mesh. Most animals are unable to chew through this tough, sturdy wire and will end up staying outside where they belong.

It is not just the high vents you need to be concerned about. The low vents cause even more problems, as there are a great deal of nuisance animals who do not climb up to the roof. Check the coverings over low vents such as those to the basement or crawls space. Make sure that no animals are able to get in from these places.

There are many more ways that a nuisance animals can get into your home. So be vigilant in discovering entry points to keep these creatures out. Having weak windows and doors or even pet doors can provide nuisance animals with easy access to your home.

Don’t let these animals roam inside our outside your home! To get help with removing nuisance animals from your home, give us a call or visit NJ Animal Control.

Dealing with Stink Bugs

Filed under: Pest Control — Tags: — Megan Howard @ 6:16 pm October 7, 2012

stink bug

Anyone who’s ever had to deal with stink bugs knows how difficult it can be to remove them. They’re small and heavily armored so any attempts to crush them with a well-placed boot will just cause them to release a foul-smelling odor that stinks up your home and is difficult to remove. These bugs need to be dealt with very carefully to ensure that they don’t become a problem.

Stink bugs enter homes in search of shelter, especially during the colder seasons, and they usually gain entry through cracks and gaps in your walls and windows. These gaps can be plugged using simple tools that can be found at your local hardware store. For cracks in walls, you can use silicone caulk to hold them off, while the gaps at the bottom of doors can be covered using rubber door sweeps.

vacuum cleanerDealing with stink bugs that are already inside your home is a little trickier. Since their armor protects them, and they release their foul smelling odors as a response to any perceived threat, simply trying to crush them under your feet is not an option. Some people have had moderate success vacuuming them up, but this may cause them to release their odors inside your vacuum, causing your entire house to stink.

Pesticides that are effective against stink bugs are available to the general public, but those looking for a cheaper and more environmentally friendly solution can use a small jar filled with warm, soapy water. Whenever you find a stink bug, simply dump it into the jar and place the cap on it. Since they dislike water, they will try to escape, but the soap will weaken their armor and cause them to drown.

If you feel that your stink bug problem has gotten out of control, contact us  for assistance. You may also visit Stink Bug Control for more information.