Pest Control

Insects and Pest Control

From ants and roaches to mice and rats, pests can invade our homes in search of food or shelter. They can damage property and spread diseases such as hantavirus, leptospirosis, and salmonella.

Correct identification of a pest is essential to developing an effective control strategy. Monitoring, prevention, and use of non-residual pesticides are the primary tools in pest control. Contact Coquitlam Pest Control now!

Insects are the most diverse group of invertebrates, with over a million described species. They have a hard, chitinous exoskeleton, three parts (head, thorax and abdomen), three pairs of jointed legs, compound eyes and a pair of antennae. They are able to fly, swim and crawl through soil or other substrates. Insects are important from a natural ecosystem perspective, because they pollinate plants and serve as food for other animals. However, some insects that bite, sting or destroy crops are considered pests.

A variety of methods can be used to control insects and prevent them from damaging crops. Crop rotation, for example, can help limit infestations because it isolates plants from the same family of insects. It is especially effective against insects that develop on a narrow range of host plants and those with short migration ranges.

Plants can be better adapted to insect damage if they are properly fertilized and well watered. Proper soil management can also help reduce insect damage by minimizing the amount of organic matter and manure in the growing area, which can attract pillbugs, millipedes and white grubs.

Insect predators, including birds, reptiles, amphibians and mammals, can be an effective control method because they feed on many different insect species. Other natural enemies of insects include parasitoids and pathogens, which attack specific types of insects and can help keep populations under control.

Parasitoids are insects that develop in or on a single insect host and ultimately kill it. These parasitoids have a very narrow host range, and it is important to match the life cycle and physiology of the parasitoid with its host insect.

Disease pathogens, such as viruses and fungi, often require insects to complete part of their life cycles. Insects carry the pathogen on or inside them, and when the insect is destroyed, the disease can spread to other plants.

Products based on the bacteria Bacillus thuringiensis, commonly known as Bt sprays, provide an alternative to chemical pesticides. When applied correctly, a Bt spray can effectively control caterpillars, grubs and certain beetles without harming warm-blooded organisms or beneficial insects.


Rodents are a common pest problem in commercial and residential settings. They can damage food and structures with their fur, feces, urine, saliva, and droppings, as well as spread diseases through bites from fleas and mites they carry. They also contaminate food by chewing on packages, containers and other surfaces where it is stored or handled.

Rats and mice have an amazing sense of smell, which allows them to sniff out where food is kept inside a home or business. They can also chew through wires and cables, causing electrical outages and fires. Rodents have a high reproductive potential, so an infestation can occur quickly.

Rodents have a wide variety of lifestyles, and some species are arboreal, fossorial (burrowing), saltatorial/richochetal (leaping on their hind legs) or semi-aquatic. However, all members of this extensive order share some morphological traits, such as having a single upper and lower pair of ever-growing incisors. Examples of well-known rodents include mice, rats, squirrels, porcupines, gophers and beavers. Rabbits, hares and guinea pigs belong to a different order, Lagomorpha, and have two pairs of upper incisors, rather than one pair.

Rodents are important in the natural environment. They play an important role in seed dispersal and help grow new vegetation. They are also a source of food for birds, other animals and humans. Some rodents have been accidentally introduced to new areas and are considered invasive, affecting native wildlife and disrupting ecosystems.

To reduce the risk of a rodent infestation, businesses should remove easy-to-access food sources such as trash, crumbs and open food containers. Clutter should be regularly removed to discourage rodents from seeking shelter and hiding places in cluttered areas. The outside of buildings should be kept free of holes and cracks where they can enter, and grates should cover vents and floor drains to keep rodents from gnawing their way in. If rodents are present, a professional pest control provider should be consulted to provide effective, low hazard pest management strategies. These may include trapping, baiting or using a physical method. All methods have risks, and proper handling is crucial to prevent injuries to people or pets.


Diseases, fungi, bacteria and viruses can affect plant growth and cause pests to die. They can also interfere with the normal functions of plants, making them less likely to resist attacks from insects and other organisms that can damage them. In some cases, diseases can be controlled by predators or other natural enemies.

Farmers can try to prevent diseases by growing crops in healthy soil, avoiding overusing nitrogen fertilizers and using other management practices that promote good health in the soil. Some diseases can be controlled by introducing the right kind of beneficial microorganisms into the crop. Bacteria, fungi and other microorganisms may be able to compete for nutrients or space or produce antibiotics to help protect the plant from attack by harmful organisms.

In addition, some crops are naturally protected by parasites or other natural enemies that prey on the pest or destroy it by other means. This kind of control is called biological control. In a garden, this could mean the introduction of nematodes that infect and kill caterpillars or snails that damage young plants.

Other methods for controlling pests include the use of sticky traps or pheromone traps to monitor populations. These can be very helpful in nipping a pest problem in the bud by catching it before a population booms, and they allow growers to take action at the right time.

Pesticides are chemicals that are used to kill or inhibit unwanted organisms. They can be plant-based, vertebrate (bird or rodent), invertebrate (insect, tick, mite or snail) or microbial (bacteria, virus or fungus). In order to be effective, many of these substances are applied to the surface of the plant. When a plant absorbs the chemical, it becomes toxic to the target organism. Repeated applications of certain pesticides can lead to resistance in the organism, which reduces their effectiveness. Pesticides can also harm other nontarget organisms or the environment if not used correctly.

Many diseases in fruit and vegetable crops are controlled by natural enemies, or natural controls. In the field, this might mean insects or birds that prey on pests or weeds. In the greenhouse, it might be fungus or other plants that are capable of surviving or killing the pests.


Pesticides are chemicals used to kill organisms that interfere with human or animal life by damaging plants, animals or the environments in which they live. They include insecticides (killing insects), herbicides (killing weeds), fungicides (killing fungi) and other substances such as plant regulators, defoliants and desiccants. Pesticides are important tools for crop production, but can be harmful if improperly applied or stored.

The primary benefit of pesticides is that they protect crops from disease vectors, such as insects and weeds, as well as nuisance organisms such as mildews and rot. However, pesticides also pose significant health risks when used in large quantities or incorrectly, and can poison plants, animals and people.

Pesticide use leads to environmental pollution, with chemical residues in air, water and soil. This contamination moves away from the target plant, contaminating soil, air and other plants or organisms that aren’t the intended targets. Eventually, these contaminants enter the food chain, impacting humans and animals, including pets and livestock.

Many pesticides linger in the soil, affecting the health of microorganisms that make it fertile and productive for growing food. This can lead to the emergence of resistant weeds and insects. It can also damage soil structure and cause erosion, reducing the quality of farmland.

Only about 0.1% of a pesticide interacts with the targeted insect, weed or other organism, and most of the rest reaches places where it doesn’t belong. As little as 0.1 kg of an insecticide can pollute 1,000 m2 of water, soil or other environment with toxic effects.

Most pesticides are absorbed by the plants on which they’re applied, but some are systemic, moving (translocating) inside the plant to reach their targets. The systemic movement occurs upward in the xylem or downward in the phloem, depending on the pesticide’s mode of action.

A pesticide’s mode of action identifies the exact biological mechanism that it disrupts. This information is important for resistance management, as it allows scientists to develop new products that effectively kill or suppress specific pests without harming other species. In addition to the active ingredient, most pesticides contain “inert ingredients” that help them spread, adhere and disperse. Manufacturers keep these ingredients secret as trade secrets because they can be as hazardous to the environment and people as the active ingredient, and can contribute to pesticide resistance.