Pest Management on how to manage pests

  • Published
  • By 2nd Lt. Benjamin Aronson
  • 15th Wing Public Affairs

Although summer brings out bugs, the 647th Civil Engineer Squadron Pest Management Flight has helpful advice to keep bugs away.

Pest Management supports an array of missions including bird airstrike hazard, treating homes, dorms, and workplaces for pests, removing bird nests, capturing hogs, cats, and dogs, and combating invasive species.

“We try to be proactive when it comes to pest problems on base and not reactive,” said Senior Airman David Walker, 647th CES Pest Management journeyman.

Although the pests can be bothersome, they can be easily managed by cleaning.

“As long as you keep your house clean and pick your stuff up you won’t really have any issues,” said Walker. “It’s not uncommon to see a roach or two. A lot of people panic when they see a roach. It’s when you see the bigger, reddish-brown ones showing up, they have found a food source and are trying to start a nest.”

Airmen should also avoid leaving food and water out. Airmen should also submit a work order for any leaks from pipes to avoid attracting animals such as cockroaches, ants, and rats.

Insects can also enter the home through entry points such as holes in walls, unsealed windows, door seams, and open garages.

After checking for food, water, and entry points, pesticides may be used as a last resort. The amount of contact with pesticides should be limited.

“Spiders and geckos are phenomenal at controlling insects because insects are their food source,” said Staff Sgt. Alexis Quinteros, 647th CES pest management craftsman. “People tend to not like them because they’re freaky and everywhere, but they’re great to have around.”

Paper and cardboard are a food source for ants and cockroaches and many service members hold on to their boxes between moves. Boxes should be checked to see if there are any cockroaches.

While people may be trying to keep the insects at bay, Quinteros stresses that keeping feral animals away, such as cats, is also important.

“Please don’t feed the cats on base,” said Quinteros. “Cat feces is full of disease which is harmful to people. These are feral animals that shouldn’t be handled or fed.”

To submit a work order for Pest Management, call 808-449-8763.  Airmen in base housing should contact Hickam Communities at 808-423-1650.