Pest Termite Control Solutions

Pest Termite Control Management Solutions

 – Peace be within thy walls, and prosperity within thy palaces.

People back in antiquity were just as innovative in managing pest problems as we are today. Some of their pest control methods became ritualized, some became obsolete (such as using sulfur), and some were impractical (such as “slash-and-burn” in heavily populated areas). The foundation for contemporary farming methods, however, remains the knowledge that has been built up through the ages through trial and error. Early methods of controlling pests were documented mostly by Europeans.

Soon after Creation of Man (Documented in Genesis), between 3,000 BC and 1,000 BC, farmers discovered the fundamentals of what we now recognize as pest management. They learned how to genetically manipulate crops and optimize genetic diversity by cross-specific and within-specific mixing; they manipulated biological communities to their advantage; they used chemicals such as sulfur to combat pests, and they used and described a number of cultural techniques, such as the raising of mounds, that allowed them to farm sustainably.

 – Behold, I will bring it health and cure, and I will cure them, and will reveal unto them the abundance of peace and truth.

From 1,000 BCE to 500 CE
According to written records, farming was institutionalized by the formalized study of plant diseases (Theophrastus, 370 BC), development of better controlled treatments (Democritus, 470 BC), and expanded uses of biological controls in China (324 BCE). Despite this, pests and termites continued to remain a pressing problem, and humans focused their mental and physical lives on disaster prevention. For instance, in Roman times, grain farmers worshipped the wheat-rust gods and goddesses–Rubigus and Robigo–who, if unpleased, could destroy wheat harvests.

In western Europe, lack of security, as well as loss of knowledge, infrastructure, commerce, and technology following the collapse of the western Roman empire, significantly affected advances in pest-termite control management. Thanks to the Byzantine Empire and the Turks, knowledge was brought back via Arabic documents and their translations of ancient Greek and Roman texts. These formed the foundation of the Western Renaissance we know.

 – I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.

During the Renaissance
Humans significantly advanced understanding of insects, ticks, termites, pests, rodents and other aspects of farming. The taxonomic work of Carl Linnaeus (1707-1778) and Antonie van Leeuwenhoek on microscopy brought new tools to the pest-termite control management field, which laid the groundwork for the explosive growth in knowledge. The Modern and Post-Modern worlds began trading with each other, and farming crops selected from small genetic bases. As long as those crops were separated from the pests and pathogens they had co-evolved with in their original environments, crops thrived. Without quarantine, however, the pathogens and insect pests were unintentionally imported, causing catastrophic consequences.

For instance, Phytophthora infestans, a pathogen, killed potatoes plants across Europe. In Ireland, where populations relied on potatoes, famine took an enormous toll.

 – He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.

The Irish Potato Famine spurred a revolution in our understanding of plant diseases and in integrating diverse treatments. From the late nineteenth century through the middle twentieth century, chemical, biological, and genetic approaches to termite control and pest control advanced dramatically. Key to the understanding of diseases and termite and pest control was a debunking of spontaneous generation theories.

Spontaneous Generation! Most people believed that mildews and germs were generated spontaneously — “from nothing”.
Louis Pasteur, in France, showed this was not true. Another pioneer, Robert Koch (1843-1910), showed germs caused diseases. He demonstrated germ theory by passing blood from animals infected with B. anthracis, the bacteria responsible for the disease anthrax, to healthy animals, which caused healthy animals to exhibit symptoms of anthrax.

These two landmark studies opened the door for effective disease-causing germ research. Chemical insecticides, fungicides, and herbicides marked the start of a new era of pest-termite control management, starting with devices that effectively dispersed chemicals, and early uses of the mixtures of Paris Green and Bordeaux.

 – And thou shalt be secure, because there is hope; yea, thou shalt dig about thee, and thou shalt take thy rest in safety.

Paris Green, an arsenic-containing dye, was used to produce wallpaper. Grape farmers would spray this dye onto their grapes to reduce the chance of passersby stealing them when passing. Apparently, the Paris green did not just keep people away, it kept insects away, too. The Bordeaux Mixture, developed in France in the 1860s, was a mix of copper sulfate, lime, and water used to keep grapes from developing Powdery Mildwack.

In 1888
Albert Coebele traveled to Australia and found Vedalia, a tiny ladybug, which fed on cottony-cushion scales. He brought a few of those beetles back and released them in California, where they have controlled the cottony-cushion scales since then.

 – For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Successfully grafting of resistant grape rootstocks has produced varieties resistant to the pest problems. For example, phylloxera, an insect that originated in the New World and was imported into Europe along with American grape varieties, devastated European vineyards. European grapes were saved only through a shrewd grafting of European varieties onto American grape rootstocks. Genetic breeding programs developed crops resistant to such debilitating diseases as fungus blight, and marked the start of a new direction in the control of plant diseases.

In 1908
the first cases of resistance were reported from an insecticide, long before a new class of chemicals, synthetics, were introduced. The Chemical Age overlapped with the discovery and use of synthetic pesticides. Although synthetics were reported to have been used on plant pathogens as early as the 1930s, the start of the chemical age is generally marked by the discovery of insecticidal properties of DDT in 1939. DDT (dichloro, diphenyl, trichloroethane) and other synthetics such as carbamates and organophosphates were very successful and efficient.

The Chemical Age
marked an end of integrated approaches to pest control. Because of the seeming efficacy of synthetic insecticides, it seemed that there was no need for the other tactics in pest management. Consumers came to expect 100% blemish-free products, and farmers came to expect 100% pest control. In addition, the chemical industry became a powerful business entity, with sales soaring, particularly in the post-World War II period.

 – But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.

Most farmers sprayed yearly, with no monitoring of pests. Pesticide usage increased steadily from 1950 to 1970. Then came the pesticide challenge: the wide spread development of pesticide-resistant insects.

Such resistance makes some pesticides less effective, and it encouraged producers to apply pesticides more frequently at higher rates in order to get their pests under control. Farmers were caught in the pesticide dependency cycle. Cases of human health problems, groundwater contamination, and eradication of natural biological controls led to early efforts at integrated pest management (IPM) in the late 1960s (see the video on Pesticides, listed under Resources). The seeds for a pesticide backlash were planted in the 1950s, with the development of pesticide resistance such as DDT, and the demonstration of severe environmental and human health problems. Agriculture, though, was reliant on chemical inputs; the lobbying by interest groups was powerful, and consumers expected inexpensive, tainted foods.

Psalms 91:1-12 – He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.   

The Environmental Age
Thus, there was little movement toward alternative practices of management. It was only after the influence of Rachel Carsons book, Silent Spring, that a shift began. Published in 1962, Silent Spring detailed the dangers of excessive pesticide use, particularly DDT, and it lit a fire under the environmental movement. This movement gave birth to several major pieces of legislation, and to the establishment of the Environmental Protection Agency.

Although synthetic pesticides are still the dominant form of pest management for many crops, individuals have options for which products (e.g., duration, selectivity, and mammalian toxicity) to use. Since the mid-1980s, scientists have developed a number of new methods for controlling pests–transgenic crops, for instance, which are resistant to diseases, arthropods, and other pests.

INTERESTING FACT – There are Homemade Pest Control solutions you can make that will take care of your general insect needs.

 – There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.

History of Pest Control Insecticide Use

The practice of agriculture first began around 10,000 years ago
In the fertile crescent region of Mesopotamia (parts of modern-day Iraq, Turkey, Syria, and Jordan), where edible seeds were originally collected by populations of hunters and gatherers. Then came cultivation of wheat, barley, peas, lentils, chickpeas, bitter vetch, and flax, as populations became more settled and agriculture became the lifestyle.

Similarly, rice and millet were domesticated in China
About 7500 years ago rice and sorghum were grown in the Sahel region of Africa. Local crops were domesticated independently in West Africa, possibly also New Guinea and Ethiopia. Three regions in the Americas independently domesticated maize, squash, potatoes, and sunflowers.

It was understood that farmed crops would be subject to pests and diseases
Leading to a great loss of crop production, and an ever-present danger of starvation of populations. Even today, with advances in farming sciences, losses from pests and diseases are between 10-90 per cent, averaging between 35-40 per cent, across all the food and fiber crops potentially available. Thus, there is great motivation to seek ways of overcome problems caused by pests and diseases.

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4,500 years ago
Sumerians used sulfur compounds for the control of insects and ticks

3,200 years ago
Chinese used mercury and arsenical compounds to control lice.

Writings from ancient Greece and Rome
Indicate that religion, folk magic, and use of what could be termed chemical methods were tried to control plant diseases, weeds, insects, and animal pests. As there was no chemical industry, whatever products were used had to have been plant or animal derivatives, or, if mineral, readily obtainable or accessible. Thus, smoke, for instance, is recorded to have been used in fighting blight and fungus.

Smoke the Pests Out!
The principle was to set fire to certain materials, such as straw, chaff, trimmings from the hedge, crabs, fish, manure, or antlers from an ox or other animal, in a windward direction, in order to diffuse the smoke, which was to be malodorous, over an entire orchard, crops, or vineyard.

It was usually thought that this smoke would drive out the blight or the fungus. Smoke was also used to repel insects, as were several botanical extracts, such as bitter lupin or wild cucumber. Tar was also used on the tree trunks to catch the creeping insects. Weeds were controlled mostly through manual weeding, but a variety of “chemical” methods were described, such as using salt water or seawater.

Pyrethrum is another Pest Control Management Solution
Derived from the dried flowers of Chrysanthemum cinerariaefolium, the “Pyrethrum Daisy”, has been used as a pesticide for more than 2000 years.

Persians used the powder to protect stored grains, and later, crusaders brought the message back to Europe that dried, rounded daisies controlled lice.

Many inorganic chemicals were used from ancient times as insecticides
In fact the Bordeaux mixture, made from copper sulphate and lime, is still used to fight a variety of fungal diseases. Until the 1940s, either inorganic substances like sodium chlorate and sulfuric acid, or organic chemicals from natural sources, were still used extensively for pest control.

However, some pesticides are byproducts of the extraction of coal gas or other industrial processes. Thus, earlier organics like nitrophenols, chlorophenols, creosote, naphthalene, and oil petroleum were used as fungal and insecticides, while ammonium sulphate and sodium arsenate were used as herbicides. Drawbacks to many of these products were high rate of application, lack of selectivity, and phytotoxicity.

The rise in synthetic pesticides was precipitated during the 1940s
The discovery of effects from DDT, BHC, aldrin, dieldrin, endrin, chlordane, parathion, captan, and 2,4-D drove this movement. These products were effective and cheap, with DDT being the most popular due to its wide-spectrum activities. DDT was used extensively, appeared to be of little toxicity to mammals, and reduced diseases carried by insects such as malaria, yellow fever, and typhus; as a result, Dr. Paul Mueller won the Nobel Prize for medicine in 1949 for discovering its insecticidal properties. However, by 1946, resistance to DDT in houseflies was reported, and, due to widespread use, reports emerged of damage to non-target plants and animals, as well as problems with residuals. Throughout much of the 1950s, consumers and most decision-makers were not too concerned with potential health risks from the pesticides.

INTERESTING FACT – Termite Control uses termiticide which is put in the ground where it will not harm your home, children or pets.

Food was cheaper due to the new chemical formulations
With the new pesticides, there were no documented cases of people dying or being severely injured from their “normal” use. There were a few cases of damage due to improper use of the chemicals. But the new pesticides seemed pretty safe, especially when compared with arsenic forms that killed people in the 20s and 30s. Problems, however, might have arose from the indiscriminate use, and by 1962, Rachel Carson had highlighted them in her book Silent Spring. This brought home the problems that could arise from indiscriminate use of pesticides and led the way to safer, more eco-friendly products.

The World’s Most Popular Weed Killer Joins the Insecticide Market
Research on pesticides continued, and the 1970s and 1980s saw the introduction of glyphosate, the worlds biggest selling herbicide, low-use rates sulfonylureas, and imidazolinones (imi) weed killers, and the dinitroanilines and the families of aryloxyphenoxypropionates (fop) and cyclohexanediones (dim). For insecticides, there has been the synthesis of a third generation of pyrethroids, the introduction of avermectin, benzoylureas and Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) as a spray treatment. This time also saw the introduction of triazoles, morpholines, imidazoles, pyrimidines, and the dicarboxamides families of fungicides. As many agrochemicals introduced during this period had only one mode of action, thereby making them more selective, problems of resistance occurred, and control strategies were introduced to counteract these adverse effects.

In the 1990s, research activities focused on finding new members of existing families that had greater selectivity and better environmental and toxicological profiles. In addition, new families of agrochemicals were introduced into the marketplace, such as triazolopyrimidine, triketone, and isoxazole herbicides, the fungicides strobilurin and azolone, and insecticides chloronicotinyl, spinosyn, fiprole, and diacylhydrazine. Many new agrochemicals can be used in grams instead of kilograms per hectare. New chemistry of insecticides and fungicides has allowed better resistance control and improved selectivity. This period has also seen the maturation of the older products with respect to their mode of application, introducing newer, user-friendly, more environmentally sound formulations.

Integrated pest management system
This is a term to label n an effort to deter pest populations from developing and reduce pesticide use and other interventions to levels economically justifiable, has also contributed to reduced pesticide usage. Todays P-management toolbox has expanded to include using GMO crops engineered to make their own pesticides or exhibit resistance to herbicides or broad-spectrum insecticide products. These include herbicide-tolerant crops such as soybeans, corn, canola, and cotton, as well as varieties of corn and cotton that are resistant to corn borings and bollworms, respectively.

In addition, use of integrated pest management (IPM) systems that deter development of pest populations and reduce agrochemical usage has become more prevalent. These changes have altered the character of pest management and potentially reduced and/or altered the character of the agrochemicals used.

INTERSTING FACT – The history of pest control technology is interesting. Take a look at it and learn how all the learning we have gathered over the years leads us to how we hire hunters to take care of our insect and rodent problems.