Dial Environmental Blog

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Dial Environmental has been providing pest control and lawn care managament for over 30 years.

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Do I Have to Keep My Home Spotless to Avoid Pests?

While keeping a home spotless is certainly one of the best ways to avoid pests, Dial Environmental knows it’s simply not possible. A house is never immaculate, and if you have children or pets, it doesn’t matter how frequently you clean or how often, there’s no real way to keep it spotless. The truth is, while a messy home can help attract pets, even the cleanest of houses can experience a pest infestation. Having pests is not a sign that your home is dirty or unkempt, it’s just a sign that your home is attractive to these invaders. When you consider that the American cockroach has been known to survive from eating the pages of books, or that ants are well documented to enter homes in order to drink water droplets left in a sink, or even that many rodents first enter a home seeking not food, but warmth from the...
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Why You Should Winterize Your Landscape, and How to Protect Your Plants.

At Dial Environmental, we love the crisp fall air and the beautiful colors that the leaves show as summer slowly turns into fall. We also know that as the seasons change and the grass grows a little slower, it’s important to remember that we need to protect our landscaping and prepare it for winter. Winterizing your plants not only protects the roots and new growth from frost, but it can also help keep wildlife and insects from invading your Landscape during the months their limbs are bare. Proper winterizing of flower beds helps to ensure that bulbs don’t freeze, which can result in your flowers not growing the next year. In order to care for your plants and help them weather the cold months, the following services are recommended: Pruning. Winter is the time in which you should have all trimming and pruning done for your trees and bushes. The change...
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Rodents: Searching for Ways to Get Indoors

RodentsRodents getting into your home can cause a range of risks and complications for your property and well-being. If you are like other people facing this threat, you are likely wondering how rodents get inside and how you can stop it. The following guide highlights common access points that rodents use when they are ready to strike. Small Cracks and Holes Small cracks and holes in your home's foundation are an issue you must address when your mission is to keep these invaders outside. Rodents can crawl, climb and scratch their way through almost any opening they find, and you will have an issue on your hands in no time. You can seal the openings around your home with caulk to keep rodents where they belong. The Roof You take several steps to keep rodents out of your home and away from your property, sealing cracks and holes around your home....
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Pests That Invade in the Fall

AntsWhen summer begins to fade away, the warm days will be replaced by cool nights. A range of pests will then know winter is coming and take steps to find shelter and enough food to survive until the hot and sunny days return. Pests that need a place to stay won't be picky, and your home could be the perfect solution. Learn about the types of pests you can expect in the fall and what you can do about the problem if you want to safeguard your home. Rodents Rodents are one of the most common pests people encounter during the cool months of fall, and you don't want them to catch you off guard. One small opening in your home's foundation or on the roof is enough to let rodents get inside and cause trouble. To reduce your odds of a rodent infestation, seal the cracks around your home with...
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Biting and Stinging Pests of Summer

Stinging Insects Biting and stinging pests are out in force this summer. While some of these pest stings are just painful or itchy, others can be more serious, and dangerous to our family and pets. Biting pests see people as “fast food”. Most are very efficient at sucking out our blood, including mosquitoes, ticks, fleas, lice, bed bugs, chiggers, conenose bugs, biting flies, and no-see-ums. In most cases it’s not our loss of blood that causes the most concern – it’s what these pests can transmit directly into our blood stream that is much more dangerous. These include hundreds of organisms that cause everything from Lyme disease, to West Nile and Zika. Plus, the chemicals in the insect saliva causes us itching and swelling that is especially unpleasant. Stinging pests, including bees, all kinds of wasps, and some ants, usually sting because they perceive us as a threat to themselves or their...
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Importance of Aeration and Seeding Services for Your Lawn

Lawn CareWhen fall starts to arrive in New Jersey, you might not think too much about your lawn. Engaging in lawn maintenance activities in the fall is vital for your ability to enjoy a lush, green lawn in the spring and summer months. Grass can become stressed during the summer by the heat and drought. If your lawn is not properly aerated and overseeded in the fall, you may be left with bare spots. Dial Environmental offers aeration and seeding services to help you to enjoy a beautiful lawn year-round. Aeration Core aeration is important because it penetrates the thatch layer of grassroots and helps to break up compacted soil below. This allows more nutrients and water to penetrate into the deeper soil layers and gives more room for the roots to spread. Core aeration also improves your lawn's surface drainage. Aerating in the fall allows new grass seedlings to take root...
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Ants Are Moving In

AntsAs ant experts, we notice interesting things about ants. For instance, they are no respecter of property – they invade homes of all sizes equally, and they infest EVERY neighborhood. They are so common a problem that they are the #1 pest listed in gallop polls. You can be sure that every day, ants are either invading your home, or trying to.  The first ants that crawl into a home are the scouts, looking for food, water, or a nesting place. Once they find what they are looking for, they go back to their colony, laying down a scent trail as they go so other ants can more quickly find their way. Depending on the ant species, they may prefer sweet, or proteins like meat and grease. Many ants eat both, but they often switch their food preferences from day to day. Whenever possible, never provide ants food and water. Clean...
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How to Check for Bed Bugs on Your Vacation

Bed bug on skinMany people go on vacation each year to relax and forget about the worries of daily life, but you could encounter another problem if you are not careful. Since they host many people throughout the year, hotels have a high risk of getting bed bugs. Keeping an eye out for the pests and knowing the warning signs is vital if you don't want to be the next target. Bed bugs that get into your home won't be easy to manage because they can resist most at-home treatment options, so protecting yourself before you get home is the smart move. Bed Bug Detection Learning to spot and identify the pests before they get the chance to infest your belongings will decrease your odds of getting bed bugs. Bring a flashlight with you so that you can check your mattress and under the furniture. Adult bed bugs have flat and round bodies and...
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Signs You Have a Carpenter Ant Problem

Carpenter antIf you are a homeowner and want to get the most from your house for years to come, taking steps to protect your property is essential. You can face a range of threats when you least expect it, but pests are some of the most common, inflicting a lot of damage. Carpenter ants will get into your home and cause harm if they get the chance, and you probably won't spot them in the early stages unless you know the signs for which to look. Learning about carpenter ants is a step in the right direction if you would like to reduce your odds of an infestation, but it's also vital you know when to contact a professional before the issue gets out of control. Red Flags So, what are the red flags that indicate a possible infestation? The first sign is large black ants crawling on the floor or wall;...
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Mosquito, Flea, and Tick Warning For Summertime

Mosquito on white backgroundThe arrival of warm nights, snow melts and rains, stimulates the emergence of adult mosquitoes. According to the CDC, illnesses from mosquito, tick, and flea bites have tripled in the U.S., with more than 640,000 cases reported during the 13 years from 2004 through 2016. So, now is the time to start thinking about how to protect your family. What Can We Do to Help? Dial Environmental offers Mosquito, Flea, and Tick programs, with both convention and organic treatments – the treatments are safe for use around children, pets and the environment, and won’t harm beneficial insects such as bees, butterflies or earthworms. We offer, every two weeks treatment programs, every three weeks, and once a month. Conventional treatments include adulticides, and insect growth regulators. Organic treatments include essential and/or organic oil treatments. What Can You Do? If you are outdoors and there are mosquitoes around, use effective repellents to protect...
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Keeping Pests Out of Your Memorial Day BBQ

Ants on leafThe last thing that you want is to find ants or other pests inside a container of food or a beverage container while you're enjoying a Memorial Day BBQ. Fortunately, there are some ways that you can keep pests away from your BBQ so that you can concentrate on spending time with family and friends. If you plan to eat inside the house after preparing food outside, make sure any cracks are sealed in the doors and windows. This will keep pests from entering the house while you have a large amount of food on the table and will also keep pests out of the home the rest of the year as well. Ask guests to close the door securely after they come inside the home, especially if they plan on going in and out on a regular basis while at the BBQ. An option is to get a screen to...
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Bug Found Embedded in van Gogh Painting

grasshopperSurprise! A tiny grasshopper was recently discovered embedded in the paint of one of Vincent van Gogh’s famous masterpieces, Olive Trees. The small grasshopper was hiding in plain sight on the painting but had never been noticed before. This bug must have landed in the paint in 1889, while it was still wet. It is well known that Van Gogh liked to paint outdoors. In one letter he wrote to his brother, he spoke of flies landing on his canvases as he was painting, and needing to remove them. Watch for those grasshoppers, too!
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Rat Steals Mail

rat blogRecently, a woman in Brooklyn had been complaining that the U.S. Post Office wasn’t delivering her mail. She had been getting late notices for bills she never received. It turns out the postal worker tossed the mail onto the woman’s porch each day, but before she retrieved it, a rat was dragging some of it off into its nearby burrow to use as nesting material. The pest management professional who discovered what was happening found between 30 and 40 pieces of mail, shredded by the rat, in the nest. If you have rodents stealing your mail or simply disturbing peace in your home, contact Dial Environmental today!
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Bed Bug Histamines Persist

bed bug blogA recent study showed that bed bugs emit substantial amounts of histamine that persists even after the bed bugs are eliminated. The study found that histamine levels in bed bug-infested homes were at least 20 times higher than homes with no history of bed bugs. High levels of histamine are in bed bug feces—they use the substance to mark good places to aggregate, near where sleeping humans are, their preferred food. In humans, histamine is part of our natural immune system. But it can cause inflammation and respiratory problems, and allergies when inhaled, plus rashes when it contacts our skin. Histamine persists a long time; the researchers discovered high levels of histamine in homes even three months after the bed bugs had been eliminated. In future tests they will look at if histamine levels decrease after both the bed bugs are eliminated, and rigorous cleaning that removes household dust. Bed bugs...
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A New Tick Species in New Jersey

tick blogAn established population of a tick never before seen in the U.S. was discovered last summer in Hunterdon County, New Jersey. The tick (Haemaphysalis longicornis) is native to Asia, but has been found in places like New Zealand and Australia on sheep. It is primarily a pest of livestock, but will feed on humans as well. Health officials have no idea how the tick got here. The ticks were so numerous that they crawled up the pant legs of the people walking on the property. The ticks were controlled, but researchers will return to the property this spring to determine if there are still populations, and set traps for wild animals to see if they are infested and may have spread the infestation. Any such case of a new tick is alarming because they can carry and transmit diseases. It has also been found that birds can become infested with many...
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What is Frass and How Can I Identify It?

TermiteTermites are found in every state with the exception of Alaska. Research by the National Pest Management Association indicates that these voracious eaters cause approximately $5 billion in damage to homes and other buildings each year. Statistics show that your home is more likely to be attacked by termites than to experience a fire. Even buildings constructed from brick, stone or concrete are at risk because termites can attack the frames of windows and doors as well as plaster, baseboards and insulation. Because the insects set up their colonies behind walls or underneath floors, termite damage is often difficult to detect in the early stages. As a result, you should inspect your home for the telltale signs of an infestation, including damaged wood and their frass. What is Frass? Termite droppings are called frass, a term derived from the German word fressen, which means to feed the way an animal would....
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Perimeter Treatments Make Life Easier

perimeter treatmentsMany pests can be kept out of a home or office with our professional perimeter treatments. Fewer pests is great for many reasons, but one benefit often overlooked is that it means you have a naturally cleaner home. It saves you time and work cleaning up dead insect bodies, spider webs, insect excrement, and other messes and damage that pests leave behind. After all, you have enough cleaning to do! You shouldn’t have to clean up after uninvited and unwanted pest “guests,” too! By reducing pests coming indoors, our perimeter treatments also make your home a healthier place to live. The treatments decrease the number of disease-causing organisms pests spread, and reduces the chances of being bitten or stung by bugs. Plus, pests, their bodies, cast off skins, and droppings, can unfortunately cause allergic responses in some people. These are some of the reasons our perimeter treatments are so popular and...
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Pest Prevention Tip of the Month

squirrel blogLook at your trees and shrubs close to your home, and prune back any branches that have grown within 6 feet of your walls or roof. This helps prevent Norway rats, mice, squirrels, and raccoons from gaining entry to your roof area. These pets often find or create openings, and build nests inside attics and other areas.
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Ant Season is Upon Us!

ant seasonEvery year, we hear stories about huge numbers of ants invading buildings. As ant experts, we are never surprised by these stories. The fact is, ants are a problem year-round, but during the months ahead ant colonies will start growing larger as each week passes. Ant problems continue to be the #1 pest problem in the country and in Northern Jersey, with more households complaining about them than any other pest. They are almost a universal problem, partly because there are so many different kinds of ants. While some species nest outdoors, many others will bring their entire colony indoors. They are quite adept at finding a way inside! Ants coming inside may have already established an indoor nest, or they are looking for food or moisture. Scout ants quickly alert the colony when they have found a good food source. Ants have definite food preferences. Some are sweet-eating ants, others...
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DIY Pest Control: 3 Reasons to Avoid It

Do-it-yourself pest control sounds like a good idea. It seems like it will be cheaper and less to worry about. After all, you don't have to pay a professional to come into your home and you don't have to think about which pest program works best. You only have to buy the products and watch the pests go away. Unfortunately, DIY pest control sounds a lot better than it is. It's not very safe. Pest control products contain chemicals that may harm people, pets and wildlife if they're applied incorrectly. You might spray too much and create a toxic environment outside of your home, killing beneficial insects such as honeybees and ladybugs. If you apply chemical products in your home without the proper training, you may put your family and guests at risk of exposure. It's not very practical. It's easy to spend a lot of money on pest control products....
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