Archive for the ‘Expensive’ Category

Bedbugs With Drug-Resistant MRSA ‘Superbug’ Germ Found

ATLANTA — Hate insects? Afraid of germs? Researchers are reporting an alarming combination: bedbugs carrying a staph “superbug.” Canadian scientists detected drug-resistant staph bacteria in bedbugs from three hospital patients from a downtrodden Vancouver neighborhood.

Bedbugs Superbugs

Bedbugs have not been known to spread disease, and there’s no clear evidence that the five bedbugs found on the patients or their belongings had spread the MRSA germ they were carrying or a second less dangerous drug-resistant bacteria.

However, bedbugs can cause itching that can lead to excessive scratching. That can cause breaks in the skin that make people more susceptible to these germs, noted Dr. Marc Romney, one of the study’s authors.

The study is small and very preliminary. “But it’s an intriguing finding” that needs to be further researched, said Romney, medical microbiologist at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver.

The hospital is the closest one to the poor Downtown Eastside neighborhood near the city’s waterfront. Romney said he and his colleagues did the research after seeing a simultaneous boom in bedbugs and MRSA cases from the neighborhood.

Five bedbugs were crushed and analyzed. MRSA, or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, was found on three bugs. MRSA is resistant to several types of common antibiotics and can become deadly if it gets through the skin and into the bloodstream.

Two bugs had VRE, or vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium, a less dangerous form of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

Both germs are often seen in hospitals, and experts have been far more worried about nurses and other health care workers spreading the bacteria than insects.

It’s not clear if the bacteria originated with the bedbugs or if the bugs picked it up from already infected people, Romney added.

The study was released Wednesday by Emerging Infectious Diseases, a publication of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Continuing Education: Bed Bugs

As you know, we at Beucher & Son Termite and Pest Control are always investigating new pest control techniques as well as brushing up on the old ways. We stay on the cutting edge of all pest treatments, this ensures that our customers are getting the best service possible.

My son and I traveled  to a special class on bed bugs this morning and as I am sure that you have heard many times over, bed bug activity is skyrocketing! It seems that every bit of news on pest that is put out nowadays concerns those dastardlyblood sucking  bed bugs.

The class was the the Marriot in Tampa and hosted by Residex, a local pest control supply business. The class was taught mostly by Paul J. Bello of PJB Pest Managment Consulting, LLC.

It was a very informative class on a subject that seems to be very difficult to eliminate. The lecture covered the  complete cycle of the treatment for bed bugs as well as what the technician and what the customer should expect from the treatment.

The highlight of the class, (atleast it was for me) was when Paul Bello removed the lid of a small glass jar that contained actual live bed bugs and secured the open end of the jar to his forearm with rubberbands. Why would a sane individual do this, why would someone purposly allow bed bugs to penetrate your soft skin and suck out your blood?

 I can’t really answer that but it was super cool to watch those little suckers go!  I grabbed the TMO HTC-HD2 cell phone, shoved it in hands of my son Brandon and pushed him into the crowd of on lookers to get some pictures of this for you all.

Pretty cool, huh?

QUICK BED BUG FACTS

Hemiptera: Cimicidae

SIZE: 1/4 to 3/8 inch (4-5 mm)

COLOR: Reddish brown or brown

DESCRIPTION: Bed bugs are sometimes called “red coats,” “chinches,” or “mahogany flats.” The adult bed bug is a wingless insect that is flattened from top to bottom.

HABITAT: At the beginning of an infestation, bed bugs are likely to be found only in the tufts, seams, and folds of mattresses and bed covers. In areas of heavy infestation, bed bugs can be found in crevices in the bedsteads. Because bed bugs can live in bird nests, houses and buildings with several bird nests in the eaves and on the roof often will have bed bugs coming into the living areas.

LIFE CYCLE: The life cycle stages of a bed bug are egg, nymph, and adult. The females lay about 200 eggs, usually at the rate of three or four a day, in cracks and crevices in the floor or bed. Newly hatched bugs begin feeding immediately. They shed their skin five times before becoming adults.

TYPE OF DAMAGE: They feed principally on human blood by piercing the skin with a long beak and sucking blood into their stomachs. They feed mostly at night, but will feed during the day if hungry and the light is dim. Their presence is indicated by leaving blood stained smears on walls, sheets, pillows and other light-colored surfaces.

INTERESTING FACTS: Usually discovered in unsuspected areas such as in floor cracks, under carpets, behind loose wallpaper or wall pictures, and in old, unused stoves.

Source: University of Virginia Cooperative Extension Program.

Got Bed Bugs, Call Us Now  727-388-6759

New Pest In Town Threatens South Florida Trees

FORT LAUDERDALE (CBS4) ―

  • Gumbo Limbo
  • Black Olive
  • Copperleaf
  • Broadleaf Arrowhead
  • Cocoplum
  • Brazilian Pepper
  • Wax Myrtle
  • Live Oak
  • Mango

It has also been reported on several palms which include areca palm, and coconut palms.

The Gumbo Limbo Spiraling Whitefly is noticeably larger than the fig whitefly. It lays its eggs in a distinctive spiral pattern on leaves and deposits a white waxy substance on top of them. The adults congregate on the undersides of the leaves and move very slowly, unlike the fig whitefly, which will fly away at the slightest disturbance.

So what is a Whitefly? They are small, winged insects that typically feed on the underside of leaves with “needle-like” mouthparts. Whiteflies can seriously injure host plants by sucking nutrients from the plant causing wilting, yellowing, stunting, leaf drop, or even death.

There are more than 75 different whiteflies reported in Florida.

Man uses a blowtorch to kill spider, burns down house

Posted by Chris Spags

black widow spider 214x214 Man uses a blowtorch to kill spider, burns down houseI don’t know much about pest control, but perhaps we can all learn from one Fresno man who attempted to use a blowtorch to deal with his spider problem, with predictable results.

The Fresno fire department went on a call Friday for a somewhat-normal fire in a home’s garage. But the reason for the fire was most uncommon.

A Fresno Fire Department spokeswoman says that the fire began when one of the people in the whom saw several black widows in the home. In order to get rid of the spiders, he took a homemade open-flame blowtorch to ignore a fire.

The fire ignited on a combustible material, causing a fire that severely damaged the garage and resulted in the home’s five inhabitants being displaced.

No one was injured by the fire.

Well no one except, I would presume, the spiders. Because if they survived that one, I can’t imagine they’ll be very pleased. This is precisely how low-budget horror movies titled Spider Attack 3D begin.

Put down that blow torch and call Beucher & Son to get rid of those horrible spiders!   

Call Now – 727-388-6759

Bed Bugs Make A Comeback

click for larger image Panama City, Fla:
Good night… sleep tight… don’t let the bed bugs bite.  It’s a well-known bedtime rhyme and increasingly, a real problem.

Bed bugs hide in small cracks and crevasses, but they’re often found in mattresses and box springs – hence, the name.  Once thought eradicated, the lowly insect is making a comeback.

“We have a lot more calls today than we’ve had in the years past,” said Jimmy Strickland, owner of Gulf Coast Pest Control in Panama City.

Bed bugs hitchhike on suitcases, boxes and shoes in their search for food.  That food is the blood of humans and other warm-blooded hosts.  Adults are about a quarter-inch long.

“If you do an inspection and you look in the cracks and crevasses of your mattresses along the sewn edges… they are visible to the naked eye,” said Strickland.

According to the National Pest Management Association, there are several ways to prevent bed bugs.  Vacuum suitcases when returning from vacation; hotels and motels are breeding grounds.  Check bed sheets for blood spots – a tell-tale sign of their presence.  Never bring second-hand furniture into your home before thoroughly examining it for infestations.  And, regularly inspect areas where pets sleep.

A polyurethane mattress protector can also help.  “It will give a nice soft feel but it won’t allow the bedbugs to penetrate your mattress,” said Richard Branham, owner of The Sleep Center, a mattress retailer in Panama City.

Although do-it-yourself treatments are available, it’s a good idea to call a professional once bed bugs invade.

“It’s very intense and very time consuming and of course, the more knowledge the applicator has, the better chance of him finding the bugs,” said Strickland.

And it can be expensive.  According to Strickland, treatment can cost $300-$500.

“Usually it’s a one time treatment,” said Strickland.  “If they’re deep into furniture, in the cracks and crevasses of furniture… more than one treatment is necessary.”

Bed bugs don’t carry diseases, but their bites can become red, itchy welts.  Beyond that, they just don’t make good bedfellows.
   

Orkin Bugged By Lawsuits

Termite Company Facing Four Class Action Suits For Shabby Work

Elizabeth Allen shows Mark Strassmann.Elizabeth Allen has a name for her Florida home.
“The termite buffet,” she says. “They’ve been in my front entry way. They’ve been in my dining room. They’ve come up in swarms.”

Mark Strassmann talks to a woman who says the shoddy service she got from pest control giant Orkin to control a termite problem turned out to be more annoying than the bugs.

But what really eats at Allen, CBS News Correspondent Mark Strassmann reports, is her termite company. She hired the “Orkin Man.” For six years, she says, Orkin improperly treated her home, botched repairs and hid superhighways of termite damage. She now estimates that sixty percent of her house had had some kid of termite damage.

“I think you hire Orkin to protect your home and all of a sudden one day you realize you have to protect yourself from Orkin,” said Allen.

Even Orkin’s internal audit — in documents obtained by CBS News – showed a company wide failure rate of 45 percent for all initial termite treatments; and a 54 percent failure rate in the Southeast, the so-called “termite belt.”

The company is now fighting four class action suits from the likes of Elizabeth Allen.

“They are engaged on an ongoing basis of defrauding homeowners who stand to lose the most important investment of their life,” said Allen’s attorney, Chris Searcy.

But if complaining customers often get nowhere, Wayne Cowart says he knows why. He’s a plaintiff’s termite consultant, and a former Orkin executive who oversaw all the company’s damage claims. He says Orkin used its financial and legal might to discourage those complainers.

“It’s like the bulldog fighting the skunk,” Cowart says. “You may win, but it’s just not worth it. And pest control companies know that. … It’s an epidemic within the industry. It’s absolutely epidemic.”

Mythical Bed Bug2 287x300 Bed Bug Treatment: Not a Do It Yourself ProjectOrkin has another side to the story.

“The heart of our business is to protect people’s homes,” the company said in a statement, adding that termite claims make up less than one percent of its customers each year, and 98 percent of those claims are resolved to the customer’s satisfaction.

But for their damage, Collier and Peggie Black were awarded $3 million from Orkin in arbitration.

“We don’t feel like we beat Orkin. We survived Okin,” said Collier Black.

Now Elizabeth Allen’s bedroom may not survive. Wood taken from the walls crumbles from the tunnels made by termites.

Watch the video!

http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=588365n&tag=related;photovideo

Florida company ready to set “bugs” against oil

Executives of a firm that sells oil-eating bacteria say cleaning water is their business.

BY CAMMY CLARK

cclark@MiamiHerald.com

A biotechnology company from Sarasota has pitched its oil-eating bacteria compound as nature’s housekeeper for cleanup duty in the Gulf of Mexico.

While executives of Osprey Biotechnics have received no response from BP, the company appears to have a new ally:Gov. Charlie Crist.

Crist visited the company Thursday afternoon, and after a 40-minute meeting with executives to learn more about their bioremediation agent called Munox, he said he was “very impressed.”

Developed in 1985, Munox has a track record of devouring and degrading hydrocarbons in oil to clean up contaminated soil and groundwater sites, while leaving behind small amounts of harmless carbon dioxide and water, company officials said.

“Petroleum remediation is our every day business,” said Victoria Finley, vice president of business development for Osprey Biotechnics. “We did not grab widgets out of the closet, dust them off and say we can clean the Gulf.”

The bacteria compound is made from naturally occurring microbes that are isolated from the environment. They are fermented. Water and a proprietary list of natural ingredients are added to make the concentrated liquid compound, which can be applied by spraying like a farmer would fertilizer.

But getting Munox before cleanup decisionmakers has been a struggle. BP and the federal government’s Unified Command have received thousands of pitches from individuals and businesses who all think they have the solution to protecting the coast and getting rid of the crude oil — from companies making booms from human hair to Kevin Costner and his water-cleaning centrifuges.

Several other companies have touted their own proprietary hungry bacteria, including one called BAAD Bugs.

The bacteria compound produced by Indiana-based Bioremediation Inc. was demonstrated last week at an oiled wildlife response class last week near Key West.

BAAD Bugs appeared to work as well as the Dawn detergent on a dead bird, with the benefits of not leaving behind hazardous material. But there are no studies on how the product could affect live birds.

Before Crist will promote Munox to the decisionmakers for use on the massive oil spill, he wants input from Mike Sole, Secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection and a scientist.

“I’m not a scientist,” Crist said.

Sole was expected to hold a conference call with Osprey Biotechnics.

CRITERIAIn 2003, Munox met stringent criteria for human and environmental health to be included in the federal agency’s Design for the Environment Program as a bioremediation product.

 

But to be used in the cleanup on open water, Munox must be on the EPA’s emergency management list. At one point it was, but was removed after the company let the listing “lapse.” Finley said they are in the process of having it put back on.

CAUTIONCompany officials have said a 55-gallon drum of Munox would clean about one acre of oiled land or 36.5 square miles of open water but have declined to estimate a cost.

 Several scientists have expressed caution in using commercial bioremediation products because of the potential to do more damage to the environment.

“There are hundreds of companies out there that say they got something that eats like crazy,” said Joe Lepo, a bioremediation expert at the University of West Florida in Pensacola, who was hired by the Environmental Protection Agency in the mid-1990s to study commercial biodegradiation agents.

“In a nutshell, nothing works on the open ocean in bioremdiation,” Lepo said. “There is just too much chaos and dilution of the product out there.”

Grace Gagliano of the Bradenton Herald contributed to this report.

Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/2010/06/18/1687143/florida-company-ready-to-set-bugs.html#ixzz0rOvFOBZ1