Eco-friendly methods of pest control

The mouse is drinking coffee

Certain pesticides can be detrimental to the environment and as such are duly regulated through legislation. Concerns over environmental impact have led many to seek alternatives to harmful pesticides. The chemical compounds found in them can infiltrate different systems, causing unintended damage to water life, plants, animals, and even humans. Although these pesticides are effective in eliminating the intended pest, their use can cause a significant amount of collateral damage. In farms, pesticides present also a risk to stocks. Increasing awareness around environmental issues has scrutinised pesticides, prompting the promotion of more eco-friendly alternatives. Alongside pest-repellent plants, here are some pest control methods that have less impact on the environment.  Any reputable pest control company should be able to offer natural alternatives to synthetic pesticides when and where appropriate. Discover effective eco pest control methods in our comprehensive guide.

 

Heat Treatment

Heat treatment involves heating up a room to 56ºC or above for a period of time to kill off a range of pests, including bed bugs, fleas, moths, and cockroaches. Insects and their larvae can’t survive the high temperatures for longer than a minute, so this method is effective at preventing a re-infestation. Heat treatment exterminates virtually all insects in an infected room through a catch-all approach rather than targeted methods with pesticides. This means there’s no chance of causing longer-lasting unintended damage to other insects, plants, and animals once the treatment is complete.

 

Proofing

For larger pests such as mice and rats, the most eco-friendly method of pest control is to prevent them from entering your property. Drainpipes, air-vents, and attic spaces can all be modified with mesh and other materials to bar them from coming in. If you notice signs of a mouse infestation, it’s best to get in contact with a professional pest controller and request the proofing of your property. 

 

Microbial insecticides 

As already mentioned, one of the main criticisms of traditional pesticides is that it can cause unintended collateral damage to a wide range of insect and animal species. Microbial insecticides address this problem. Consisting of microorganisms, they target specific insects, causing them to fall ill and die. One of the most common microbial insecticides is called ‘Bt’ (Bacillus thuringiensis). This insecticide is particularly effective against moths, paralyzing their digestive systems and making them unable to eat – they usually die within a couple of days. 

 

Insecticidal soaps 

Another non-toxic way of dealing with common insect pests is the use of insecticidal soaps. These are simply mixtures of soap and oil which are lethal to various insects, including aphids, whiteflies, and earwigs. Although it is less targeted than microbial insecticide, it still carries less overall damage than traditional pesticide. The soapy mixture is corrosive to the outer shell of many insects – the cell membranes break down and the insects ultimately die from dehydration. Always remember to test the soap mixture out on a small area as it can be damaging to some plants too. 

 

Diatomaceous earth 

This is a powder made up of the crushed shells of fossilised algae. In addition to its use as a natural remedy for various ailments, it can also be applied as a non-toxic pest control method. The powder is abrasive with tiny jagged edges running along the grains. It effectively eliminates and deters various soft-bodied insects such as aphids, caterpillars, maggots, slugs, and snails. Be aware that diatomaceous earth can cause harm to all soft-bodied insects, so it may damage species that you don’t want to target.  

 

Baking Soda 

Baking soda is an incredibly useful substance, seen in everything from household cleaning products to toothpaste. One of its many uses is as a non-toxic pesticide. Once ingested by a pest, the baking soda combines with fluids in the stomach to produce gas – the amount of gas produced is enough to kill within hours. You can use it to eliminate rats, cockroaches, and aphids. However, be aware – baking soda can also be extremely dangerous to your pets if eaten. Make sure they have no access to the infected area. If you’re ever in doubt, contact a professional pest controller for advice. 

 

With increasing awareness of pesticide impacts, many are turning to eco-friendly pest control methods. Using some of the methods outlined above, you’ll be able to keep pests in check whilst minimising the impact on the wider ecosystem. Explore these solutions to keep pests at bay while safeguarding the environment. As ever though, contact a professional pest controller to discuss the most suitable way to make your home pest-free. 

 

Inoculand operates in the London area and is dedicated to clearing all manner of pests from residential and commercial properties. If you have a problem, drop our expert pest controllers a message or call us on 0203 405 5000 to see how we can help you.