Memorial Day Weekend Pest Report and Tips

Whether your Memorial Day weekend plans include a picnic in the park, a backyard barbeque, or lakeside leisure, pests are sure to attend. According to Atlanta-based pest control leader Orkin, effective pest control starts with understanding pest behavior.

“Memorial Day unofficially kicks off the outdoor season and — in many areas like the Southeast — peak pest season,” says Ron Harrison, Ph.D., Orkin technical director. “Understanding what attracts flies, ants and mosquitoes to popular outdoor events helps people prepare for and reduce pest activity.”

Ant habitats, or nests, are often in lawns or tree stumps. As the weather warms and their metabolisms increase, ants leave their nests and forage for food, making backyard barbeques easy targets. Some species, including little black ants, eat meat, honeydew, vegetables and oily foods — the perfect picnic spread. Once they locate food, ants release invisible scent trails with pheromones for nest mates to follow.

The common house fly — one of many pesky flies — can transmit bacteria every time it lands according to the FDA. These filthy pests are attracted to decaying organic matter and sugars.

To keep ants and flies at bay, Orkin suggests these helpful tips:

  • Tightly seal all food and drink containers
  • Clean up spills quickly
  • Mow yards and trim vegetation
  • Empty and wash garbage cans regularly
  • Hire a licensed pest control professional

Biting, disease-transmitting mosquitoes can also ruin outdoor fun. Learning mosquito facts can help you avoid bites. For example, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, mosquitoes that spread West Nile virus are most likely to bite between dusk and dawn. If you’re outdoors from sunset to sunrise this weekend, Orkin recommends wearing long sleeves and an EPA-registered insect repellent on exposed skin or clothing.

About Orkin, LLC

Founded in 1901, Atlanta-based Orkin is an industry leader in essential pest control services and protection against termite damage, rodents and insects in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Europe, Central America, the Middle East, the Caribbean, Asia and the Mediterranean. With more than 400 locations, Orkin’s almost 8,000 employees serve approximately 1.7 million customers. The company serves homeowners and numerous industries, including food and beverage processing, foodservice, hospitality, healthcare, retail, warehousing, property/ facilities management, schools and institutions. Learn more about Orkin on our Web site at Orkin is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Rollins, Inc. (NYSE: ROL).