Preppers: Protect your stash from these four pests

Stockpiling is a good way of storing food for future survival needs. However, pests remain among the biggest hurdles in stockpiling. According to Census Bureau‘s newly released American Housing Survey, 11 percent of U.S. households had encounters with rats or mice in 2015 alone, while 12 percent had reported encounters with cockroaches.

The survey also revealed that Houston was the most pest-infested city in the country, with eight percent of households reporting rat or mice encounters and 38 percent having cockroach encounters. Among the top 10 pest-infested cities in the country are Washington D.C., Atlanta, Philadelphia, Nashville, Phoenix, Boston,  Miami, and Tampa. Aside from rats and roaches, moths and ants have also become a nuisance among households.

With these numbers at hand, it would be essential to know how to effectively thwart these pests and keep them away from stockpiles. This article will walk you through steps to protect your stockpile from these pests.

Ward off pests from your stockpile with these steps

Mice and rats – Because of their gnawing habit and their fast reproduction, mice and rats have continued to be among the most prominent pests that pose a threat to both your edible and non-edible stockpile. Below are a few steps to rid your stockpile of these pests:

  • Keep your stockpile area clean – Maintaining a clean stockpile and removing the smell of food and water may deter these rodents. Keeping the stockpile airtight and free of dust will do the trick. It may also be beneficial to avoid storing your things in damp or swampy storage places.
  • Visit the store room frequently – Making  your presence known by moving bins around or disrupting the stockpile area may force rodents to vacate quickly. It is also advisable to always bring a metal rod when inspecting the area. Rats can quickly grow to the size of a small cat, so carrying something to bash them with might prove handy.
  • Use traps – Traps have always been the go-to option when it comes to eradicating rodents.
  • Keep a few cats – As a natural enemy of rodents, cats will keep them away from your stockpile. Cats may also go after other pests including squirrels, moles, and chipmunks.
  • Herb up your stockpile – Herbs such as peppermint and spearmint are known to be natural rodent-deterrents.

Cockroaches – Like mice and rats, cockroaches are notoriously fast breeders. Here a few steps to deter these creepy-crawlies from your stockpile:

  • Keep your storage area clean – Keeping the area clean is perhaps the most essential step to repel these insects. Discard infested materials that you find lying around and clean the area with soap and water. Always keep the area dry and free of food crumbs.
  • Use airtight containers – Transfer food items inside airtight bins to avoid infestation.
  • Take note of possible entries – Search the area for holes and crevices where insects may enter.
  • Make use of earth and flour mixtures to kill cockroaches – Combining equal amounts of diatomaceous earth and flour may help eliminate pests. Cockroaches are going to be attracted to your concoction because of the flour, and as they dig into your mixture, they simultaneously ingest diatomaceous earth that is toxic to them.

Ants – These insects, especially the sugar ant species, are particularly after sugar and other sweet food. You may eliminate these pests through these steps:

  • Keep your stockpile area clean – Make sure that the area is free of food debris, especially soda splashes or bread crumbs.
  • Seal entries – Due to their small size, ants can virtually travel anywhere. Seal cracks that may potentially become the way for ants to invade a room, causing an ant infestation.
  • Use natural remedies – Sprinkle strong-smelling spices like cinnamon or pepper inside your storage area to deter these insects. Using diatomaceous earth also appears to be effective in keeping the pests off.

Pantry moths – Pantry moths are known to infest flours and grains. Eliminate pantry moths with these helpful steps:

  • Keep your storage area clean – Clean your storage area frequently. You might want to vacuum the area also, just to be sure, to remove moth eggs and larvae that are not usually that noticeable.
  • Use airtight containers – Using durable and sealed containers such as cans and jars may help deter moth infestations.
  • Use traps – Pantry moths can also be deterred by using pheromone traps.

Sources include:

OffTheGridNews.com

Realtor.com

SurvivoPedia.com

HomeGuides.SFGate.com

MarthaStewart.com

Home.HowStuffWorks.com

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