Wasps, mosquitoes and flies can be a problem year-round, but we have seen a huge increase in the number of phone calls we’ve been getting this summer related to these pests. While we’ve heard it from restaurant to retail store owners alike, property managers tend to feel additional pressure from their residents to remove these pests from the property.

It’s no secret that mosquitoes carry multiple deadly viruses including West Nile, Zika and most recently the Keystone virus, but flies and wasps also have their own set of problems. Because of how much time flies spend near foul material (garbage, feces, dead animals etc.), they are more prone to pick up and spread bacteria. Wasps may also cause severe allergic reactions. Just a few weeks ago, a North Carolina man passed away from a wasp sting while working on his home. While reactions like this are rare, they are possible.

For these reasons, and the general irritation towards flying insects cause, it’s important for property managers to do the best they can to mitigate their presence in apartments and other multi-unit complexes. Here are a few tips you can try to reduce the chances of flying insects becoming a problem.

Entrances/Exterior Repairs

Mosquitoes, flies and wasps can easily enter your building through doors and windows. By installing door sweeps and reinforce weather-stripping, you can greatly reduce the number of bugs in general that find their way inside (and help you save on energy bills). Bugs may also enter through unsealed vents and torn screens. Repair any damages like this to the exterior of your building.  

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Standing Water

Did you know that mosquitoes can breed in less than a ¼ inch of water? That means places where water may have filled, bird baths, fountains and more offer an opportunity for female mosquitoes to lay eggs. Make sure that you are emptying things that collect water regularly, such as vases, buckets, flowerpot saucers, trash cans and pet dishes.

Lawns and Grass

Not all wasps build nests in trees or high up outside your building, some build their nests in the ground where holes have already been dug out. Rabbit holes, for instance, can become occupied by wasps and be a hazard to those walking across lawns or other grassy areas. Fill in these holes to prevent wasps from moving in.

Make sure grass is regularly mowed. Mosquitoes will rest in tall, grassy areas during the day and keeping grass short will reduce the likelihood of this.

Plants/Garden

Certain plants help to deter these flying insects. Mosquitoes, for instance, will not go near plants like citronella, lemon balm, catnip, basil, marigold or lavender. Consider planting these close to the exterior of your building and near doors and windows to prevent mosquitoes from coming inside.

Wasps also don’t like herbs that are aromatic, so spearmint, thyme, citronella and eucalyptus are good choices for these pests too.

Garbage Placement/Removal

Both flies and wasps are attracted to what’s inside garbage cans, whether that is old food or other decaying matter. If possible, keep large garbage bins away from the building itself. This reduces the chances of wasps building nests nearby and of flies and wasps finding their way indoors.

Wasp Nest Removal

If there is a wasp nest found on the property, the best way to take control is to contact a pest professional. You run far too high of a risk trying to remove these yourself. There are many DIY techniques that you can find that recommend spraying household chemicals into both ground nests and hanging nests, but these will likely only aggravate wasps and they won’t resolve the problem in the first place.

Quarterly Pest Inspections

Your ultimate method of defense when it comes to mosquitoes, wasps and flies, is to schedule routine visits from a pest technician. Your pest control technician will use these stops to check for signs of pests, conditions around your property that may support pests, and then they will treat the exterior of your building to prevent flying insects from wanting to come inside in the first place.

Thinking about investing in commercial pest control? Contact Holder’s today!