PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 29

❱❱ ASK THE EXPERT
BY MICHAEL BENTLEY, PH.D.

Finding the time to attend local
continuing education courses
can be difficult. Are there other options
for earning recertification hours other
than attending live classes?

A:

Traditionally, live courses were the
primary way to earn recertification
credit. In an effort to modernize the process
and keep up with the growing demand for
recertification, many states are now accepting
both live and online courses to satisfy continuing education requirements. Currently, 39 different states accept online courses, and that
number appears to be growing. Although the
courses approved for online training can differ
from one state to another.
Having said this, it is important to remember
that the requirements for earning or renewing a pest control operators license can differ considerably by state. These differences
can include how hours or credits are earned,
how they are categorized, the total number of
hours needed per category, and the timeframe
for earning those hours. Check your state's
regulatory website for information on your
continuing education requirements, and to
find out if online courses are available. If they
are, you may find a link to virtual courses that
can be completed for credit. Additionally,
the National Pest Management Association's
Online Learning Center now provides several
online courses that are approved for continuing education credit in many states. To find out
if any of NPMA's online courses are approved
in your state, go to www.npmatraining.org.

Q:

After a client complained of
insect bites, I inspected the
home and found several dozen mites that
appear to be the cause of the problem.
The client lives in a high-rise building, and
has no pets. Where could these mites be
coming from?

A:

A common reason for mites infesting a home and attacking humans is
because the mite's normal hosts, often rodents
or birds, are no longer available. With nothing else left to feed on, the mites will migrate
from the host's nest or burrow in search of
another food source. Indoor applications using
appropriately labeled products can manage
mites that have already migrated from nesting
sites. However, this strategy will not prevent
re-infestations. The best control strategy is to
eliminate nests and roosting areas for birds, or
control the rodents.
I would start by identifying the mites.
Knowing the species will point you in the
right direction of what host to inspect for.
If you have bird mites, search for any signs
of roosting and nesting, especially on the
exterior of the building around your client's
home. These signs can include nesting materials in rafters or ledges, and sites above where
droppings have accumulated. For mites that
infest rodents, look for droppings or other
evidence of activity that could indicate a nesting site such as damaged goods and chewed
insulation.

Q:

With winter right around the corner, do you have any treatment
suggestions for overwintering pests?

A:

When it comes to overwintering
pests, prevention through exclusion is often the most successful strategy. If
exclusion efforts such as repairing damaged
screens and replacing worn weather stripping can be made early, ideally around late
summer, then there is little to no chance for a
problem to develop inside the home. Pointing
out these areas of concern firsthand can also
encourage clients to address issues sooner
rather than later.
In many cases, however, exclusion efforts
aren't made until a problem has already

developed. When this is the case, your treatment options will often depend on the treatment site and the pest. Infestations inside attics
or wall voids can often be treated with appropriately labeled residual products, whereas
problems that occur inside the home may be
best resolved using mechanical means such
as a vacuum. Once the active infestation has
been dealt with, be sure to identify and correct
the point of entry to prevent an infestation the
following year.

Q:

I have lost several production
days this summer due to heavy
rainfall. Are there products or treatment
options for these wet conditions?

A:

While a wet summer is usually a
promising sign of increasing pest
pressures and busy months for PMPs, too
much rain can bring operations to a grinding
halt. This is because liquid perimeter products
typically cannot be applied in the rain, and
liquid termiticides may not be applied to soil
if the ground reaches a high-enough saturation point.
Luckily, there are some formulations such
as insecticide granules that can be applied in
damp conditions to allow for perimeter pest
control applications. Additionally, specific
application techniques such as the backfill
method can be used when applying liquid
termiticides to moist soil. The exact products
and treatment methods you can use may vary
depending on site, target pest and conditions,
so be sure to consult the label first.
Another way to take advantage of rainy
days is to concentrate on interior IPM efforts
with your customers by reviewing exclusion
and sanitation practices. Using this time to
point out damaged screens, improperly sealed
baseboards and other areas of concern can go
a long way in reducing call-backs in the months
to come.  ●
©KITTIWUTTI/SHUTTERSTOCK.COM

Q:

PESTWORLD > NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2017

| 29


http://www.npmatraining.org

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of PestWorld - November/December 2017

President’s Message
What Customers Want
Reaching Out to Millennials
New Strategies Yield New Customers
Heard From the Hill: Legislative Day 2018
Marketing Corner: How to Make the Most Out of Your Facebook Presence
Membership Programs: Announcing NPMA’s New Resource Center
Standards: Do’s and Don’ts of Customer Relations
Ask the Expert
Pestworld 2017
Calendar of Events
Index of Advertisers
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - Intro
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - cover1
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - cover2
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 3
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 4
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 5
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 6
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 7
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 8
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - President’s Message
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - What Customers Want
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 11
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 12
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 13
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - Reaching Out to Millennials
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 15
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 16
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 17
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - New Strategies Yield New Customers
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 19
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 20
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 21
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 22
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - Heard From the Hill: Legislative Day 2018
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - Marketing Corner: How to Make the Most Out of Your Facebook Presence
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 25
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - Membership Programs: Announcing NPMA’s New Resource Center
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 27
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - Standards: Do’s and Don’ts of Customer Relations
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - Ask the Expert
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - Pestworld 2017
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 31
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 32
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - 33
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - Index of Advertisers
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - cover3
PestWorld - November/December 2017 - cover4
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