How do Integrated Pest Management programs work?
Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is a responsible and methodical treatment strategy relying on a combination of common-sense practices to effectively control pests in an environmentally sensitive manner. IPM is not a single pest control method but a series of professional evaluations, decisions, and controls designed to reduce risks. We will first take full advantage of our knowledge and expertise to gain as much control as possible before applying any product. And when product is applied, it is done so with a degree of precision, posing the least possible risk to people, wildlife, property, and the environment.
Integrated Pest Management is a four-tiered approach. The four basic steps include:
- Setting Action Thresholds
Before taking any action we first set an action threshold. This is that point at which pest populations or environmental conditions indicate an action must be taken. Siting a single insect does not always mean control is needed.
- Monitor and Identify Pests
Not all pests require product application. Integrated Pest Management programs work to monitor for pests and identify them accurately, so that appropriate control decisions can be made in conjunction with action thresholds. This monitoring and identification removes the possibility that a treatment will be used when it is not really needed or that the wrong kind of treatment will be used.
As a first line of pest control, Integrated Pest Management programs work to manage the lawn, exterior or indoor space to prevent pests from becoming a threat. These control methods can be very effective and present little to no risk to people, pets, or the environment.
Once monitoring , identification, and action thresholds indicate that pest control is needed, and preventative methods are no longer effective or available, Integrated Pest Management programs then evaluate the proper control method both for effectiveness and risk. Effective pest control measures posing the least risk are chosen first, including highly targeted products, such as pheromones to disrupt mating, or mechanical control, such as exclusion. If further monitoring, identification and action thresholds indicate these controls are not effective, then additional pest control methods will be employed, such as targeted application of a product.