Pest management professionals have a difficult job. They have to be able to find and identify hundreds of different pests and determine the best course of action for ridding their clients’ homes and businesses of the offenders. The species they have to deal with varies depending on where in the country they’re located. For instance, pest control experts in New England mostly have to worry about insects and rodents like mice and rats, but in the Southwest, spiders and scorpions can be a greater concern due to their potential lethality. This means that pest control specialists in Phoenix have to be able to tell a deadly species of snake apart from a similarly-colored but harmless species. They must also know the most efficient, safest method of killing or capturing the offending pest, not only removing it from the premises but also ensuring that no others take its place in the home.
Pest management professionals must be able to take in the full picture of the environment they’re working in and determine how to perform their task without causing undue harm. Throughout all aspects of their jobs, pest control experts can benefit greatly from a biology degree as it will give them the knowledge necessary to overcome the most trying obstacles in the course of their work.
The first step in pest management is identifying the problem. Pest management professionals need to be able to recognize signs of pest problems, track them to their source and then identify the specific species involved. Being able to tell one species of mouse from another could be the key to determining their habits and where they might be congregating or spreading from.
Some pests are resistant to certain chemicals, whether by virtue of their species in general or through repeated exposure to them. Having a working knowledge of the biological factors involved in extermination methods and how to recognize resistances greatly benefits any exterminator in their trade. Often a client may wish for a more humane method of dealing with rodents and request that they be captured alive and released in the wild.
Many people assume that cleaning and de-cluttering alone will take care of their pest problem, but professionals know that’s not the case. There are many things that need to be done to make a home inhospitable to pests and prevent them from getting back in. Cleaning and clearing out clutter are definitely two of the main strategies involved, but people need to also make it difficult for pests to gain entry by filling cracks and gaps, covering drains and installing metal mesh over vents. With proper attention to detail and care, pest control experts can help their clients not only get rid of pests, but also ensure they don’t come back.
The Whole Picture
In addition to knowing the taxonomy of pests, exterminators also need to be able to identify the makeup of the environment they’ll be working in. They have to be able to identify beneficial creatures and determine how their methods will interact with the entire ecosystem of the house. Any pets must be taken into account and the pest technician must ensure that any chemicals used will not negatively impact creatures other than the pests they’re targeting. Animals other than cats and dogs–chickens, for instance–will react differently to chemicals that would not harm normal pets. Knowing how various plants and animals interact and how they’ll react to various chemicals and other extermination techniques will give a pest control expert a leg up in these tough times and can help them ensure more work by displaying their skill and expertise.