Pest Control in La Mesa The “Jewel of the Hills”

Whether you live in La Mesa, CA or plan on moving there, you’ll want to know about the city and some of the pest issues in La Mesa and how Hearts Pest Management is able to utilize Integrated Pest Management (IPM) methods, including organic, to solve your pest problems.

City of La Mesa

La Mesa’s civic motto is Jewel of the Hills.

A Little bit about La Mesa

The City of La Mesa has its own unique pest issues due to its warm, semi-arid climate and often extreme temperatures.

Settlers coming from the mid-west and east coast in the late 1800s and early 1900s found La Mesa’s weather however, quite lovely.
The phrase, Jewel of the Hills” was coined by landscape artist and mother of seven, Mary Durham Garfield, who settled in La Mesa with her attorney husband in 1908.

1. Argentine Ants – An Invasive Species

2. Pest Control for Rats and Mice

3. Water Smart and Pest-free La Mesa Landscapes

Summers in La Mesa are very hot (by Californian standards) and in the winter, the evenings can be cold. During spring and summer, ants start marching into homes, not just one by one but colony by colony! Argentine ants must have decided that California is the place to be because this particular species enjoys the warm climate so much that they have made the entire coast of California one very big, large ant nest.

Argentine ant and aphid

Argentine Ant (Linepithema humile) tending an aphid.

La Mesa Pest Control for Ants

Argentine ants are an invasive species from South America that entered North America during the late 1890s via cargo ships. Because of its warm climate, and like most of California, La Mesa is sitting on top of a huge super colony of Argentine ants, ant control can be especially challenging.

The most effective pest control and permanent solution is to find and treat the ant nest; queen ants must be killed to properly eliminate a colony.

EcoWise Certified logo Green Pest Management

EcoWise Certified Green
Pest Management

Argentine ants are hard to control on ones own because they can move their colonies within hours to either escape when threatened or take advantage of a new food source.

Hearts Pest Management Service Professionals are able to identify Argentine ants and other ant species to ensure the most effective ant control is provided. Not all baits and pesticides work the same on each ant species. Some ants prefer sweets while others like meats and grease. For more information on our “Green” service, please visit: Organic Pest Control

Meet John Newkirk, Hearts Pest Management Supervisor

San Diego Pest Control Supervisor - Annual Hearts Pest Management Pic

San Diego Pest Control Supervisor – John Newkirk of East County

John lives in East County and services the La Mesa. He has many years of experience and enjoys educating customers on the nature of pests and will be happy to answer any of your questions regarding preventative and organic methods for pest control.

All of Hearts Service Technicians are EcoWise Certified, providing organic and IPM solutions for pest management, including ant control.

Hearts Pest Management specializes in ant treatment either utilizing traditional pest control methods or organic products, and sometimes a combination of both, such as a low toxicity on the outside of the home and non-toxic organic products on the inside, depending on the infestation and ones personal preference.

Ant shadow

Ant species such as the California Seed Harvester are beneficial in dispersing seeds.

Ant Nest Detection

Our professionals are experts at finding where ants are coming from, where they are living, and providing Integrated Pest Management (IPM) solutions to maintain and keep ants outside and away from your home.

Did you know? Ants spread diseases such as salmonella and staph? They can spread these diseases throughout your home when they come inside searching for food and water!

Rats and Mice of La Mesa

Mice are able to thrive under a variety of conditions. In nature, mice live in open fields but as houses are being built, less open land is available to them.
Mice tend to find their way into our homes seeking easy access to food and water as well as shelter from the cold.

Deer mouse

Mice are able to enter the home by squeezing through holes a little over ¼ of an inch.

Oh Roof Rats!

Suburban homes next to canyons are commonly invaded by rats and mice, especially during winter months when they start searching for warm, comfy places to make their nests.

Unfortunately, along with bringing their family members to partake of the kitchen pantry, mice bring and transmit disease.

The roof rat is another rodent pest that is commonly found around the La Mesa area. These rats can be one of the most troublesome of rodents, especially when they decide to set up camp in your attic.

They scurry across the attic floor or crawl space, creating pitter-patter noises with their tiny feet, waking you up at three in the morning. Then they decide to visit the kitchen where they eat and contaminate your food.

house with sub-area

Many La Mesa homes have basements or crawl spaces where rodents can enter.

Roof rats not only cause damage to the structure of your home; they transmit parasites and diseases to other animals such as our pets, as well as humans.

And, because rats are able to live in a wide variety of conditions, they are often prevalent in and around homes, gardens, and open fields throughout the city.

Roof rats are great climbers and will crossover into the attic via branches from a nearby tree. They also will get into crawl spaces under or above the house.

Once rats have made their way into a home, they start nesting right away and breed throughout the year. Roof rats can produce up to 6 litters a year and anywhere from 6 to 10 babies in each litter.

Within a given area, a roof rat’s social group has as many as 60 members! If you think you have rats, its important to begin treatment right away to avoid an infestation and damage to your home and health!

Pest Control for Rats and Mice

Rats that have been going in and out of a home leave behind what is referred to as grease rub. The dark, greasy stain comes from the belly of the rat crawling in and out of a space.

Roof rat

Roof rats are also known as black rats.

Other evidence of rats and mice are of course, droppings. Or, you may have a bad smell coming from one area of the house where a rat or mouse has died in the wall. Attics are notorious for rat infestations that cause damage to insulation.

Hearts Pest Management provides inspections for rats and mice, and may recommend trapping and/or monthly rodent maintenance. We also provide a clean-out of the attic if there is damage by urine and feces as well as exclusion work finding and blocking off any access points where rats and mice are able to squeeze in.

Access point of rat entrance

Dark, greasy-looking areas next to a hole or gap are called “grease rubs” evidence of roof rats.

Trapping with an exclusion is the most successful method for rat and mice control. Once current rats and mice have been eliminated through trapping, it’s important to keep them from returning.

Hearts service professionals are experts at blocking off any access points and making home owner recommendations such as trimming trees to keep the branches from touching the roof.

Together as a team, Hearts Pest Management and homeowner can keep rats and mice from coming into the home and causing damage and an unhealthy environment.

Caulking gaps

Caulking gaps and openings larger than of an inch keeps mice from entering the home.

Sanitation is very important in keeping mice and rats away; they can survive on a very little amount of food and water.Hiding places behind cabinets, in the garage, in the attic and under crawl spaces are all areas where mice and rats can nest and rear their young.

Excess storage of newspapers, books, pillows and cushions, etc. provide nesting material for both rats and mice. By clearing up clutter and sealing important items in containers will discourage mice and rats from nesting.

Blocking access points into the home and keeping food such as pet food in tight containers, will discourage rodents from coming in as well.

La Mesa Bee Control

Bees drinking water

Even the bees get thirsty in hot La Mesa!

Hearts Pest Management believes in the honey bee. Hearts understands just how essential bees are for pollinating our crops. You shouldn’t worry about bees if they’re just pollinating flowers near your home.

If you want to see fewer bees plant red flowers; you’ll be sure to see more hummingbirds because bees are more often attracted to yellow and Hummingbirds love red, especially tubular flowers where they can use their long beaks to gather nectar.

This doesn’t mean bees are going to refuse to gather pollen from a flower, just because of its color, but they do prefer some flowers over others.

Honey bee pollinating flowers

Honey bee collecting pollen in her basket.

Another situation in which bees may appear to be making a hive but one should not be too concerned is when bees swarm in a tree or hang like a huge ball from a building; a swarm such as this is how the queen and her workers rest when moving to a new location but they soon leave in a day or two.

If after 3 days, the bees are still congregating, then, perhaps they are building a hive and a Hearts technician should be called to inspect. Hearts Pest Management makes it a practice NOT to treat for bees if they are over 40 ft. high or 100 ft. away from humans and pets at ground level.

Remember, bees only become aggressive when defending the hive or their queen.

Water Smart and Pest-free La Mesa Landscapes

Sticky Monkeyflower

Sticky Monkeyflowers are native to California. The underside of the leaf is sticky and the flower is supposed to look like a monkey sticking its tongue out!

The City of La Mesa is surrounded by native chaparral and wildlife which can make it challenging to keep wildlife like rodents out of suburban areas. They come, not only in search of food and water, but warm protected areas for building their nests, especially during winter months.

Hearts Pest Management Representatives are experts at implementing Integrated Pest Management (IPM) methods for providing environmentally sound, yet effective ways to keep pests from becoming a nuisance or damaging your landscape.

Here are some of the IPM methods you and your Hearts Pest Management Technician can work together on in order to keep your landscape beautiful while keeping pests at bay:

1. Planting with native plants:Less water is needed for these drought-adaptive plants, which means you won’t have standing water around that will attract flies and mosquitoes.

Since prehistoric times, pest species have been exposed to natural toxins. California’s chaparral communities of native plants have been around for thousands of years and are a part of what makes California so beautiful.

Also, beneficial insects and native birds prefer these plants and shrubs thereby pollinating your garden, improving your fruit, and acting as natural enemies to the peskier pests such as plant-eating bugs.There are native plant nurseries through-out San Diego County that specializes in native plants, trees, shrubs, and seeds.

Here are just a few species you can plant in La Mesa to lower your water bill and pest activity:

Ceanothus Wild Lilac, Elderberry, Yucca, California Buckwheat, Lemonade Berry, Sticky Monkeyflower (Hummingbirds love the Monkeyflower), Agave, Laurel Sumac, Black and White Sage.

California Holly

The Toyon is a native shrub that looks like holly just in time for the winter holidays.

Note: If you want to mix native plants in your garden with non-native, here are some water-tolerant native plants that can also be planted near lawns:

California Toyon, Golden Yarrow, Deer Grass, White Alder, California poppy, and Coyote Bush.

The Toyon berry is great as a privacy bush and is considered as close to the Holly tree as possible for us Californian’s. Also known as California Holly or Holly Berry (Heteromeles arbutifolia). Can you guess what famous city in L.A. got its name from the Toyon?

2. Discourage Pests:Group plants according to their water use; provide appropriate spacing for plant growth and to prevent overcrowding where animals such as rodents may be encouraged to nest.

Keep plants from touching the home by trimming often. Make sure irrigation systems are working properly; a low-flow irrigation system will convert your yard into an efficient water-smart landscape.

3. Exclusion:

Keep pests out of your home and garden by using barriers; screens, netting, and caulking any cracks and crevices.

Hibiscus Flower

Hibiscus trees are often besotted with white flies.

4. Use of Pesticides: Sometimes it is necessary to use pesticides when all non-chemical controls are ineffective and pests are beginning to enter the home. Hearts Pest Management can manage your landscape with both traditional and organic products to keep pests away.Here are just some of the landscape issues we help our La Mesa customers with:

White flies on their Hibiscus trees, aphids on roses and other plants, fungus, mildew, scale insects, mites, and of course, gophers and squirrels.

Please call today for a caring Hearts Pest Service Representative at 800-986-1006

Hearts Pest Management offers free rodent inspections: Please call or fill out the form below to schedule an inspection or to obtain more information regarding our traditional and organic pest management services.

If you have bees that are a safety issue, ants and spiders invading your home, or rats and mice stealing your food and causing unsanitary conditions – we can help!

Call Now 1-800-986-1006 or complete the form below

 









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