IPM (Integrated Pest Management)
Our company philosophy is deeply rooted in the principles of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and the concept that the customer’s needs always come first.
Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is often referred to as Modern Pest Control because it takes a more comprehensive, science based, and eco-friendly approach to eliminating unwanted pests than traditional pest control. Traditionally, pest control firms have relied heavily on the use of toxic chemicals and outdated measures to eliminate pests. IPM is an approach that focuses simultaneously on improving sanitation: eliminating food and water where it doesn’t belong, reducing clutter, and sealing up gaps and crevices that provide access or shelter for pests. Generally, pests are found in an area because they’re getting something they need- food, water, or shelter. By removing a pest’s access to these essential ingredients, pest problems will decrease proportionally. IPM can be thought of as a shield against pests, rather than as a reaction to them after they’ve already become established.
IPM is a decision-making process that considers cultural, physical, biological, mechanical, and chemical controls. Control mechanisms are selected as each situation warrants. In all situations chemical controls are the used only as a last resort.
• Cultural Control Methods involves changing human habits, improving sanitation, changing work practices, altering cleaning and garbage pick-up schedules, etc.
• Physical Control Methods involves the alteration of pest habitats by caulking holes and cracks, tightening seals around doors and windows, the reduction of moisture, and improving ventilation.
• Biological Control Methods control pests by using predators, parasites, and disease-causing organisms.
• Mechanical Control Methods are non-pesticide devices used to control pests including: snap-traps, glue boards, monitoring stations, etc.
• Chemical Control Methods are pesticide applications to kill pests. Where chemical control is indicated, specific pest populations are targeted for treatment when they are most vulnerable rather than a general pesticide application.
Four Steps of IPM:
• Analyze the Pest Problem
It is a fairly simple process to figure out the identity of most structural pests and why they are present. Exactly where they are coming from can be more difficult to discover, and may require a thorough understanding of the structural design and construction of the facility.
• Take Short-Term Corrective Action
Although IPM emphasizes a ‘preventive maintenance’ approach to pests, in many cases, the use of pesticides is unavoidable. However, all parties must understand that each corrective action will be the least toxic of all alternatives and that the minimization of liability is imperative.
• Implement Long Term Preventive Action
Operating, “built-in” control actions that indirectly reduce pests by minimizing their food, harborage, and access are the heart of the IPM process and fundamental to its success. These actions are often technically simple sanitation or exclusion procedures. In general, sanitation and exclusion are far more important ingredients of IPM than is pesticide application.
• Inspect, Document, and Evaluate Results
Skilled inspection is essential to IPM. The evaluation of corrective action should strive to be as efficient as possible. Record keeping will indicate whether control measures have succeeded or that a new approach is needed. Inspection of specific areas where pests have been reported should try to answer three basic questions about the problem: