"Ever since they took the good stuff off of the market, I don't suppose there is much you can do.."
The assumption here is that stricter standards and regulations on the products used to control pests such as bed bugs, termites, flies, and ants, somehow result in the use of less-effective products and methods going forward. In my 12+ years in the structural pest management business, this is a viewpoint taken by many of the customers I've worked for, and unfortunately even some inside my own industry.
Now don't get me wrong, I am not in favor of regulatory agencies burdening all types of pest control product users, including homeowners, with rules that make it nearly impossible to address serious problems, which I have seen attempted at times. I would just like to counter the notion that "the good old days" were so good, and now we have to make due with our limited options.
Let me give you a brief demonstration of what I mean. Bed Bugs and Termites. Termites eat your house, and bed bugs eat you(or your blood more specifically). These are serious pests that require serious actions to control. Decades ago there were insecticides widely available that effectively controlled these and a number of other pests. The simplified history is that the decision makers of the time decided that the manufacture and use of these products was no longer safe for the environment. Let me break momentarily to tell you that I am not an expert in the area of global public health, third world countries, or the implications of an insecticide being available or not. I am simply commenting on the realm of structural pest control inside of the U.S. That being said, let's return to our demonstration using Bed Bugs and Termites. Decades later, without the use of the old and very effective insecticides, are we able to control bed bugs and termites? YES! And in fact, in most cases we are able to control them more effectively for a number of reasons. First off, once the old stuff was no longer available, there was a large unfilled demand for new products. New products are based on science and in these cases, it needed to be new science. The best pest control products usually result from the most in-depth scientific research which results in greater understanding of your target organism, which results in ingredients and modes of action that are more specific to your target pest. More specific ingredients and modes of action usually result in lower exposure risks to non-target organisms, i.e. you, me, your family pet, the birds in the trees, and the fish in the river. So, in shorthand, without the "good old" insecticides, scientists and manufacturers were forced to understand the bugs better, and make a new product which most likely kills just that bug and less likely the animals we don't want to harm. Not to mention all of the non-chemical methods of inspection, prevention, and control that a person discovers when he better understands the insect he wants to control.
Now maybe I have taken my geekcraft too far out into the realm that is occupied by people who enjoy discussing pest control to even have one reader left, but my point is this; knowledge IS power, and in pest control that means the power to effectively control pest species.
Check out www.BenzelPest.com if you are looking professional service in Cheyenne, Torrington, Wheatland, Lusk, Scottsbluff, Sidney, Alliance, or anywhere close.
If you have any related subjects that you would like to see addressed on this blog, give me a shout.