In decades past, many chemicals were used solely because of their effectiveness without much thought toward what the long-term ramifications might be. Today, pest control companies are striving to become more environmentally sensitive. We must protect our homes from pests the dangers they present, but we can do it with a lighter hand and fewer lingering effects. Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is an idea at the forefront of this movement.
What is IPM?
IPM stands for Integrated Pest Management. This is a comprehensive system that incorporates common sense practices like prevention and exclusion with modern extermination methodology. It is a series of evaluations, decisions and controls that aim to be highly effective while remaining economical and presenting the least impact on the environment. The end result is an eco-conscious way of keeping your home pest free and free of the diseases that they carry.
Where is IPM used?
Both residential and commercial pest control can be managed using IPM techniques. The practices incorporated can be employed in just about any setting. Even agricultural settings can benefit by using the techniques of IPM.
What are the components of IPM?
Evaluations, decisions and controls are the main components of an IPM system.
- Evaluations. A pest control professional employing IPM will evaluate what pests are present and at what point action must be taken. A single pest may not trigger action but an action threshold should be set.
- Decisions. The exterminator using IPM should be able to make decisions about when the action threshold has been met and what methods of pest extermination should be used.
- Controls. When control measure must be taken, IPM strives to have those measures make as little impact on the environment as possible. Green methods will be used first when available. Only when a control method has been proved ineffective will another, harsher method be employed.
Does IPM work?
An IPM system can be at least as effective as and perhaps even more efficient than a traditional extermination plan. Because IPM uses “common sense” methods for the prevention and exclusion of pests, it is often even more effective than simply spraying for existing bugs.
Can I create my own IPM system?
Homeowners can certainly research and learn more about IPM on their own. Many of the methods of preventing pests and excluding them from your home are easily done as “DIY” projects. However, a professional pest services company can be a big help in creating an overall IPM plan. A pro has resources and knowledge that a homeowner may not be able to gain alone.