Termite damage costing millions

Agricultural sector plays a strategic role in the process of economic development of a country. It has already made a significant contribution to the economic prosperity of advanced countries and its role in the economic development of less developed countries is of vital importance.

Pests, considered as an age old enemy of agriculture, continue to thwart the sector by destroying the crops. Though tiny, they are capable of large scale destruction. Termites can cause agricultural damage due to their voracious appetite for cellulose and, in other parts of the world, other materials. The exact dollar amount of loss due to termite damage is unknown in the agricultural world.

Agricultural damage can occur in several ways. First, the termite can infest the crop itself and limit the yield. Second, the termite can interfere with farming infrastructure such as by destroying poles that support fencing. Third, the termite can destroy containers used to ship agricultural products.

On average the pests are known to cause 10-16% agricultural produce loss. The insects attack several agricultural and horticultural crops. It is estimated that the loss accumulated due to damage in these crops may run to several millions of rupees per year. In North America, few crops are vulnerable to termites. However, termite species in other parts of the world may infest the actual crop and cause damage. Since termites are social insects and are in a colony, termite damage is generally concentrated and not widespread in a field. Locusts, for example, are not social and have no colonies, so when they attack a field it is in a quick and somewhat chaotic manner. Termites do not attack fields in such a manner. They have been known to attack paper products including record keeping so the agribusiness is negatively affected. Packaging material has a long history of attack by termites.

Let us look at some news articles:

Pest threatens crops on Hudson Valley farms

May 23, 2017, News 12 Hudson Valley

The crop-eating allium leaf miner is from Europe. Experts say the bug, which thrives on vegetables like onions, garlic, and leeks, was first found in the U.S. two years ago in Pennsylvania. Since then, it’s infested the Northeast destroying crops. It’s also made its way to the Hudson Valley.

“First I’ve seen it in my fields ever was a few weeks ago. I thought it was a mini-termite,” says fourth generation black dirt onion farmer Chris Pavelski, of Pine Island.

Ethan Grundbert, of the Cornell Cooperative Extension, says if the population continues to build like it has in Pennsylvania, it could be a serious issue Hudson Valley farmers are faced with the next few years.

News 12 has learned that the bugs die off in the summer months but reappear in the fall.

Currently, pesticides are still being tested.

A village plundered by termites and orphaned by the state government

Feb 19, 2017, Hindustan times

Farming and cattle rearing are their source of income. “Every family has at least two cattle. Their survival is a daily struggle. Every year, we spend Rs 15,000 to Rs 20,000 in buying grass,” former pradhan Padam Singh says.

So, what ails Lambari? An RTI application filed by Hindustan Times to the district magistrate’s office shows that in 1994, 1998 and 2009, work plans to control termites were formulated by district officials. However, the higher administration refused funds for the plans.

The agriculture department accepts that insecticides it provides to villagers have only been able to reduce termites in agricultural fields and have no effect on termites inside the buildings.

75% of the agricultural area was under termite attack. A work plan costing Rs 4.7 lakh was prepared. But funds were not granted. “Common pesticides become ineffective in Lambari because the population of termites is significantly high,” former vice-chancellor GBPUAT Prof BS Bisht, who commissioned the 2009 team, says.

Department of Agriculture issues ‘Stop Work Order’ against Sunland Pest Control

Sep 4, 2015, 25 WPBF

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services have issued a Stop Work Order prohibiting Sunland Pest Control from conducting any fumigation at this time. This comes after a Palm City boy suffered brain damage after termite fumigation at his Palm City Home. “We are aware of the tragic and heartbreaking incident involving Peyton, and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is investigating Sunland Pest Control in collaboration with the EPA and the Department of Health,” the department said in a statement late Friday afternoon.

Peyton McCaughey turned 10 Thursday at Miami Children’s Hospital, barely able to turn his head, unable to stand up or talk. His family said the boy has suffered brain damage after termite fumigation on their house.

C Tech Corporation, an Indian company has come up with an impeccable solution to counteract problems caused by such insect. Termirepel ™ is a non-toxic, non-hazardous termite/insect repellent which has been designed for various polymeric applications as well as natural materials like woods. It is a unique blend of green chemistry and smart technology which acts as an effective repellent and at the same time guarantees safety to the environment, plants, animals and fragile ecosystem.

Termirepel does not kill but only keeps the ants away by making use of their sensory mechanisms. Aggressive species are further deterred from attacking by advanced mechanisms like aversion, feeding disruption, temporary mating disruption, reproduction cycle inhibition, growth impairment and chemo sterilization. This further modifies the response of insects towards the Termirepel containing products which make them to stay away from the application.

 

Red ants menace in Train

Ants have colonized almost every landmass on Earth. The only places lacking indigenous ants are Antarctica and a few remote or inhospitable islands. Ants thrive in most ecosystems and may form 15–25% of the terrestrial animal biomass. Their success in so many environments has been attributed to their social organization and their ability to modify habitats, tap resources, and defend themselves. Their long co-evolution with other species has led to mimetic, commensal, parasitic, and mutualistic relationships.

Over here we discuss the problem caused by Red ants also known as Fire ants. Fire ant is the common name for several species of ants in the genus Solenopsis. They are, however, only a minority in the genus, which includes over 200 species   of Solenopsis worldwide. Solenopsis are stinging ants and most of their common names reflect this, for example, ginger ants and tropical fire ants. Many species also are called red ants because of their light brown color, though species of ants in many other genera are similarly named for similar reasons. Examples include Myrmica rubra and Pogonomyrmex barbatus.

The bodies of mature fire ants, like the bodies of all typical mature insects, are divided into three sections: the head, the thorax, and the abdomen, with three pairs of legs and a pair of antennae. Fire ants of those species invasive in the United States can be distinguished from other ants locally present, by their copper brown head and body with a darker abdomen. The worker ants are blackish to reddish, and their size varies from 2 to 6 mm (0.079 to 0.236 in). In an established nest these different sizes of ants are present at the same time.

A typical fire ant colony produces large mounds in open areas, and feeds mostly on young plants and seeds. Fire ants often attack small animals and can kill them. Unlike many other ants, which bite and then spray acid on the wound, fire ants bite only to get a grip and then sting (from the abdomen) and inject a toxic alkaloid venom called Solenopsin, a compound from the class of piperidines. For humans, this is a painful sting, a sensation similar to what one feels when burned by fire and the after effects of the sting can be deadly to sensitive people. Fire ants are more aggressive than most native species and so have pushed many species away from their local habitat These ants are renowned for their ability to survive extreme conditions. They do not hibernate, but can survive cold conditions, although this is costly to fire ant populations as observed during several winters, where 80 to 90% of colonies died due to several consecutive days of extremely low temperatures.

Fire ants nest in the soil, often near moist areas, such as river banks, pond shores, watered lawns, and highway shoulders. Usually, the nest will not be visible, as it will be built under objects such as timber, logs, rocks, pillers or bricks. If there is no cover for nesting, dome-shaped mounds will be constructed, but these are usually only found in open spaces, such as fields, parks and lawns. These mounds can reach heights of 40 cm (16 in), but can be even higher on heavier soils, standing at 1.0m in height and 1.5m in diameter. Colonies are founded by small groups of queens or single queens. Even if only one queen survives, within a month or so, the colony can expand to thousands of individuals. Some colonies may be polygynous (having multiple queens per nest). These ants thrive on wood, fruits or any consumable product. Thermoplastics materials have always attracted ants and insects. The plasticizers usually have bright colour. They also have aromatic odors of polymers which attract ants and insects.Thus ants and insect confuse it for the food This makes them to nibble on the plastic thus damaging it and causing huge economic loss.

Below Articles is related to the loss caused by ants.

Mumbai: Local train brakes failed due to red ants, probe reveals

Express News Service, Mumbai, November 19, 2015.

Review of a brake fail in a local train on November 17 at Matunga on the Central Line has shown that the equipment malfunction could be caused by corrosion of the brake panel due to red ants.

The local was sent to Kurla Car Shed for examination which showed that red ants inside the brake panel had damaged the cable wires, causing failure in application of brake.

The motorman had switched to emergency brakes after he failed to stop the train in the regular way.

“It was 11.47 am at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) and the local was from Kalyan. The problem occurred when the train reached Matunga station and the motorman failed to apply the brake,” said a source from the Central Railway (CR). At Kurla Shed, the entire panel inside the motorman’s cabin was opened which revealed crowding of red ants in all controls.

C Tech Corporation, an Indian company has come up with an impeccable solution to counteract problems caused by such insect. Termirepel ™ is a non-toxic, non-hazardous termite/insect repellent which has been designed for various polymeric applications as well as natural materials like woods. It is a unique blend of green chemistry and smart technology which acts as an effective repellent and at the same time guarantees safety to the environment, plants, animals and fragile ecosystem.

Termirepel does not kill but only keeps the ants away by making use of their sensory mechanisms. Aggressive species are further deterred from attacking by advanced mechanisms like aversion, feeding disruption, temporary mating disruption, reproduction cycle inhibition, growth impairment and chemo sterilization. This further modifies the response of insects towards the Termirepel containing products which makes them to stay away from the application.

 

Flies residing in the pipes: Drain flies

You are about to do the dishes and then in the basin you find these numerous creatures enjoying their treat over your dishes. Who are these creatures which appear suddenly and mysteriously in your basin causing a nuisance?

These are the drain flies!

Drain flies are “furry” moth-like appearing flies. They are very small: typically 2 to 5 mm in length, light grey or tan colored flies with short body and leaf shaped wings. The body and wings are covered with small hair which gives it a fuzzy appearance. Wings are too large when compared to the body; drain flies fold their wings in a characteristic roof like pattern.

There are more than 4,700 known species of these flies worldwide, most of them native to the humid tropics. Drain flies inhabit human drains and sewage systems where they are a harmless but also persistently annoying.

Drain flies lays eggs mostly in decomposing organic matter found in drains and pipes. The eggs are brown or cream in color and hatch in 32 to 48 hours. The larvae feed on the gelatinous drain matter and reach the maturity age in 9 to 14 days. Drain fly larvae are known to survive in high temperature and low oxygen conditions. Drain Flies have a life cycle of 1 to 3 weeks. Drain flies can grow quickly and hence they can multiply in a few days creating a nuisance

Drain Flies feed on waste matter within sewers and drains, they can however infest a property given the correct circumstances and no amount of fly spray will halt the infestation unless one can find their point of ingress or their food source.

The vast majority of domestic drainage systems are fairly clean in as much as they are designed to carry waste from one point to another and there should not be any waste sitting in the system, but due to defective pipe work or partial blockages this can happen providing a food source for the pests. However drainage systems are also designed so that no matter what occurs below ground these flies should not have access to your property and sinks, baths, toilets etc are fitted with water traps to prevent smells and pests from leaving the drainage system and entering your home.

So if one has an infestation of drain flies within bathroom there are usually a couple of things happening, firstly waste matter is building up either within or outside the drainage system allowing the flies to feed and breed, if this is occurring within the drainage system they are also finding an open vent out of the system and into one’s property. The life span of these pests is pretty short but they will lay eggs in your property and before long the next generation is swarming over your bathroom fixtures and fittings.

The most common and probably the most disturbing for a home owner is when one has an internal rest bend at the base of a soil vent pipe or downstairs toilet, the rest bend fractures or becomes displaced and after every flush a certain amount of water and waste escapes into the sub-floor. The matter builds up and the flies have a food source, they will then access the property above through any small gaps between floor boards or gaps local to skirting boards.

The above can also occur when small diameter waste pipes from sinks are suspended from joists in sub floors, if these pipes become disconnected or leak there is enough food stuff, grease & fat in the water for the flies to feed off.

Disused branch lines on drainage systems can often hold waste matter if the system has blocked or partially blocked at any time, because of its location below ground the waste will not dry out immediately and this can provide a steady and prolonged food source for the mites. If this disused branch line runs beneath and extension or conservatory and it have not been capped off properly the flies will find their way into the property.

Leaking and broken pipe work outside of the property can also allow the flies to enter the house, a cracked collar at the base of a soil vent pipe or a fractured gully pot that cannot maintain its water level will allow the flies to surface at ground level, if this occurs local to an air brick they have access direct into your sub-floor and wall cavity.

Restaurants and industrial kitchens can be prone to this kind of infestation due to the amount of food stuffs that can directly enter the drainage system and the worst case of infestation are seen at hospitals. This was partly due to a construction worker leaving a drain open within the building and partly due to the fact that hospital staff used the bed pan macerators for the disposal of excess food instead of using the appropriate food bins supplied.

Neighbors fighting an infestation of drain flies

September 4th, 2015, CBS46 News, Loganville, GA

Some neighbors in Gwinnett County are dealing with a pesky infestation of drain flies.

The flies, sometimes called “sewer flies,” look a lot like fruit flies. They’re basically little bugs that feast on the sludge inside pipelines and then crawl up into the sinks of unsuspecting homeowners.
“At first we thought it was fruit flies,” explained Bev Renales. Her home is one of at least a dozen in Loganville’s Fall Creek Landing subdivision that has become infested with the critters.

“They are gross. Very gross. Disgusting,” said Renales. She and her husband have hired an exterminator to treat the bugs, but they keep coming back.

“We’ve tried everything: bleach, Drano, hot water and vinegar. You name it, we’ve tried it,” said Renales.

Her neighbor, Nancy Gerber, has called the water and sewer department, but they told her there was nothing they could do to treat the lines.

“They wouldn’t even send someone out to look,” said Gerber. She’s fed up with the bugs and begun trying to trap them in a homemade solution of water, cleaning chemicals, and maple syrup.

Gerber and Renales would really like the county to come out and flush the lines because they believe this is a real health hazard.

Considering the above scenarios it becomes difficult to get rid of the drain flies once the pipes are installed. In order to prevent the flies C-Tech corporation has come up with solution – TermirepelTM .  It is highly effective against drain flies. It is cost efficient, inert, long lasting  and is stable up to 1400 deg Celsius temperature. This product manufactured by C-Tech Corporation is available in three different forms: Masterbatch, liquid concentrate and lacquer form. The pipes which are to be implanted in the drains can be incorporated with the masterbatch at the stage of manufacturing. If the pipes are already installed, the liquid concentrate and the lacquer can be applied on the external surface and on the access areas of the pipes so as to prevent the flies from entering the outside environment. TermirepelTM  is definitely a solution against drain flies.

 

 

Do not kill, just repel: Insects

Insects are found in each and every corner of the world. They are the most common animals on the earth and are also familiar to everyone. 1.5 million Of insect species are being named. Many are yet to be discovered. Their size, shape, color, biology, and life history are so diverse that it makes the study of insects absolutely fascinating.

Insects feed on a seemingly endless array of foods. Many insects are omnivorous, meaning that they can eat a variety of foods including plants, fungi, dead animals, decaying organic matter, and nearly anything they encounter in their environment. Still others are specialists in their diet, which means they may rely only on one particular plant or even one specific part of one particular plant.

Many insects are predatory or parasitic, either on plants or on other insects or animals, including people. Such insects are important in nature to help keep pest populations (insects or weeds) at a tolerable level. Predatory and parasitic insects are very valuable when they attack other animals or plants that we consider to be pests.

Insects are very important as primary or secondary decomposers. Without insects to help break down and dispose of wastes, dead animals and plants would accumulate in our environment and it would be messy indeed.

Insects are underappreciated for their role in the food web. They are the sole food source for many amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. Insects themselves are harvested and eaten by people in some cultures. They are a rich source of protein, vitamins, and minerals, and are prized as delicacies in many third-world countries. In fact, it is difficult to find an insect that is not eaten in one form or another by people. Among the most popular are cicadas, locusts, mantises, grubs, caterpillars, crickets, ants, and wasps.

Honey bees are kept by beekeepers because they produce honey and wax. In some countries people collect honey from wild bees.

Another insect that produces products for people is the silk worm. The silk worm is not a worm but it is a moth. On a silk worm farm, the caterpillars (silk worms) are fed with leaves of the mulberry tree. When the caterpillar pupates they spin a cocoon made of one long thread of silk. These cocoons are harvested to produce silk.

American salmon fly’s larva is sensitive to water pollution which helps scientist to recognize polluted supplies.

Antlion control ant population and help pollinate flowers while being no threat to humans.

Black and yellow garden spiders are called “guardian of the garden” because they help in controlling pest population in the gardens.

Burying beetle is the consumer of many natural materials including dead mammals; carrion, maggots and rotting fruits.

House centipede can help to keep certain other household pests in check- such as cockroaches and moths.

On the other hand insects have also served to accelerate cultural evolution. Silkworms for example, were certainly the driving force behind the establishment of the trade between Europe and China and were still a factor in 1942 when Christopher Columbus stumbled onto new world in his quest to find a sea route to the silk and species of the Orient.

The sociological impact of the insects has been keenly felt on the battlefield. Over the course of human history more soldiers have died from lice and mosquitoes, than bullets and bombs.

In World War I, medics noticed that gunshots wounds infested with blow fly maggots seldom developed bacterial infections. Their observations led to us of maggot therapy (sterile-reared fly larvae for cleaning necrotic tissue from deep wound), the later discovery of allantoin, a chemical secretion of the larvae that inhibits bacterial growth.

Honey bee rather their products have been used for medical purposes since the medieval times. This practice also called as apitherapy is used as a alternative medicine in Europe and other parts of the world. Some proponents of apitherapy use bee stings as at treatment for patients who suffer from arthritis, multiple sclerosis, lupus erythematosus, Parkinson’s diseases and other auto-immune conditions.

The knowledge of insect’s structure has also proven useful in non-biological professions. In 1983, engineers at McDonnell Douglas Corp. studied the legs of grasshoppers to help them design shock absorber for a new jet fighter, the Hornet. Dr. Rodney Brooks at MIT’s artificial intelligence laboratory is developing six-legged robots with an electronic control system that is modeled after the distributed nervous system of the insects.

In spite of all their positive attributes, some insects can cause problems. Unfortunately, most people are more aware of the few insects that cause problems than they are of the many beneficial insects. People ignorant of these beneficial facts about insects tend to kill those using different insecticides. This practice should be stopped.

Insects can be repelled rather than killed. This can be done by using C-tech corporations’ TermirepelTM. It is a non-toxic, non-hazardous, non-carcinogenic and environmentally safe insect repellent. It is engineered using unique set of complex compounds.  Termirepel™ is cost efficient, inert, stable up to 1400 deg C temperature, long lasting etc. Because of these unique properties it is compatible with various polymers like PP, LDPE, HDPE and MDPE. The product is available in the form of master batch which can be incorporated in the application while it is being manufactured. It is also available in liquid concentrate and lacquer form: which can be coated on the surface of the existing applications. Since Termirepel™ is designed to keeping the insects away effectively and not kills the insects or any other animal. It doesn’t harm any target or non target species in any way. We are committed to our environment & we believe that no harm must be caused to animals or to the environment.

 

THIS TOWN HAS ITS OWN FLY!

Flies can be spotted all over the world, both in the outside environment and indoors. The prominent areas where flies are found are in close proximity of humans and animals. They are attracted to different filthy surfaces.

Many different types of flies can be found in homes and buildings where humans are present. Unlike the outdoor locations, indoor fly sustenance is gained through decomposing trash and other food waste. Moist, damp foods provide the fly with the nutrition it needs, which is why decaying organic material is the ideal meal. In homes, the temperature tends to speed up the decomposition process, providing the right environment for a fly’s food to spoil, as well as for the insect to thrive. During the day, flies are most active during the hottest hours, as the rate of decomposition  of their food sources speeds up, making the scents more appealing and pungent, and creating an environment ideal for a large fly population. In homes and barns, they can be found near or in ceilings. Wires and beams are typical resting locations for the flies during the nighttime hours.

There are four stages in the life cycle of a fly. They begin as eggs being laid in decaying matter, which hatch to a long, whitish yellow maggot (larvae) stage within 8 to 20 hours. The larvae stage takes between four and thirteen days, but only within optimal temperature range. The third stage is the pupa. During this time, the insect completes the development stage inside its new casing – this time a dark brown color. In between two and six days, the fly will break free into the adult stage and begin the process again.

One of these flies is the Blandford fly. It belongs to the species of black fly; a biting insect. The Blandford fly’s English common name derives from a major outbreak of people being bitten around the town of Blandford Forum in Dorset, England, in the 1960s and 1970s. In a four-week period during the spring of 1972, some 600 people were estimated to have visited their doctors in Blandford to be treated for insect bites.

It was then in 1980, the Dorset County Council asked the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, formerly known as the Institute for Freshwater Ecology to come up with a solution to keep away the Blandford flies.

Blandford fly spends its larval stage in the in the weed beds of slow flowing rivers and when the fly emerges, the female seeks a blood meal before mating.

Blandford fly bites are usually most common during May and June. The Blandford fly tends to bite least in the early morning and late evening. Bites often occur on the legs and are very painful. They can produce a severe, localized reaction around the area of the bite. Its symptoms include: swelling, blistering, high temperature fever, joint pain.

The Blandford flies are been recorded in the following countries – Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Latvia, Germany & Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Southern England, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, European Russia and Western Siberia, Slovenia, Sweden, Turkey, Ukraine.

Herefordshire bite allergies blamed on Blandford fly

17th May 2011, BBC News, England

Doctors believe the bites may come from the small black insect, which has caused similar problems in Dorset.

Dr Paul Harris from Belmont Health Centre in Hereford said each doctor at the practice is seeing around five cases a week.

“We’ve seen some that can be the size of your palm across and very swollen, red and inflamed,” he said.

He believes the flies were attracted to a water feature in his back garden.

Andrew Thomas, from Lugwardine, Herefordshire, and other members of his family, were badly bitten.

Blandford fly: surge in ‘infected’ insect bites blamed on new super fly.

29th July, 2010, The Telegraph, England

The Blandford fly, a tiny insect normally found in the country, appears to have reproduced in city areas, largely thanks to the growing popularity of garden water features.

Wildlife experts said the tiny insect, can leave bite which often turns infectious and potentially leaving some victims in need of hospital treatment.

They fear the Blandford fly, which measures only about two or three millimeters long, is spreading amid reports of a rise in infected insect bites over the past few weeks.

Experts blamed the recent warm and humid which has made insects, including horseflies, mosquitoes and midges, more active, particularly in the evening.

The balmy summer evenings have also encouraged people into their gardens where they are more likely to be bitten.

Conventional insecticides have proven to be a failed solution to give effective results. These insecticides are toxic in nature. They kill target as well as non target species. They are also hazardous to human health. Moreover, species like Blandford flies are not at all affected by the toxic effects of these insecticides.

C Tech Corporation can offer a solution to overcome the damage caused by Blandford flies. Termirepel™ anti-termite, anti-insect additive is an ideal solution for the prevention and control of flies. It follows 6 pronged strategies which are extremely effective on flies as well as insects like termites, beetles, grasshopper, bugs etc.

Termirepel™ is thermally stable and does not degrade on exposure to heat and sunlight. It does not kill or harm the insect but repels them. It does not volatilize and does not degrade the soil. It is RoHS, RoHS2, REACH compliant and FIFRA exempted.

 

 

 

 

 

Black Carpet Beetles!

Beetles are a group of insects that form the order Coleoptera, in the superorder Endopterygota. This is one of the largest order of insects. There are more than a quarter million species of beetles in the world. Some beetles can become destructive pests. Carpet beetle larvae eat natural fibers and feathers. They often damage woolens and other fabrics. Other beetles, like powderpost beetles, feed on hardwoods and bamboo. These pests attack furniture and other items made of wood. Some, like the flour beetles and the grain beetles, attack food products in homes. They also damage food in production facilities and stores. Some beetles damage lawns and landscapes. Immature June beetles, called grubs, attack the roots of grass. The elm leaf beetle damages trees by eating the leaves.

Let us find more about the damages and problems caused by black carpet beetles.

Adult carpet beetles measure 2.8 to 5 mm in length. Their pronota and heads are black, and the head is partially concealed from above. Their wings, known as elytra, are brownish black. In warm environments, eggs hatch into larvae within six to 12 days; colder environments delay hatching times to between 15 and 20 days. Black carpet beetle larvae are longer than many other carpet beetle larvae and are brown and gold in color. A clump of golden hairs is located at the end of their bodies. The black carpet beetle is a common carpet beetle in Pennsylvania.

Black carpet beetle larvae can survive up to 640 days and adults can live for a couple of months. Adults do not cause damage indoors. Immature black carpet beetles, called larvae, cause damage to human clothing, furnishings, and other products. These larvae feed on natural fibers, while adults feed primarily on plant nectar and pollen. Larvae scavenge for food in dark and hidden areas. Infestations occur swiftly and often go unnoticed until damage is widespread.

Now the question is how do Black Carpet Beetles Get Into the House?

The adults are attracted to flowers, and in the spring of the year they fly into the house. The larvae wanders from the nest into the attic and other parts of the house. At times, birds and other animals die in chimneys and elsewhere in the house and their carcasses become a source of food for the larvae. Very often, the black carpet beetles are brought into the house with old woolens and carpeting. Sometimes the black carpet beetles are introduced into a dwelling in stored products such as dried dog food.

The larvae of carpet beetles feed primarily on animal and plant materials such as fur, dander, silk, wool and feathers. As a result, they damage clothing, furniture and other household materials. While larvae prefer organic materials, they consume synthetic fibers with oil, perspiration and food stains. They sometimes feed on grains and spices, as well as nuts, cereals and other milled products. Larvae may also consume animal hair, dead animals and insects. Larvae can be found living under floors, behind baseboards, inside air ducts, under heavy furniture and in other hidden areas. Although carpet beetle larvae move slowly, they infest entire homes and cause considerable damage within weeks. Adult carpet beetles feed on plant-based foods outside and can be found scavenging in gardens, where they cause damage to ornamental flora with light petals. While adult carpet beetles do not cause damage to fiber, they are also considered indoor pests.

The use of conventional fumigants, insecticides is no longer considered to be an effective solution to get rid of the beetle infestation as these insects are becoming increasingly resistant to them. The poisonous pesticides used to carry out fumigation are extremely toxic for the environment as well as for humans.

At C Tech Corporation, we offer a safe and effective solution to deal with these insects. Termirepel™ is a non-toxic, non-hazardous product that primarily repels insects from the application. It is a broad spectrum repellent which works against almost 500 species of pestering bugs thus efficaciously repulse them away from the application. The best feature of this product is that it is environmentally safe and causes no harm to the insect as well as humans and the environment. It is available in masterbatch and lacquer form, and as a liquid solution. To keep these insects at bay, this product can be coated in lacquer form or added in mulches or films.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Asian Giant Hornet!

The Asian giant hornet, including the subspecies Japanese giant hornet colloquially known as the yak-killer hornet,  is the world’s largest hornet, native to temperate and tropical Eastern Asia. The Asian giant hornets prefer to live in low mountains and forests, while almost completely avoiding plains and high-altitude climates. Their hierarchy is based on their ability to reproduce and hence is divided as the reproductive queens and sterile soldiers and workers. The Asian Giant Hornets live for about 3-5 months. It takes a larvae 14 days to become a full grown adult. Generally a colony holds 700 Asian Giant Hornets, and the majority of workers are females. The queen lays fertilized female eggs and unfertilized male eggs, and the adult males leave the hive and die after mating. Regardless of sex, the hornet’s head is a light shade of orange and its antennae are brown with a yellow-orange base. Its eyes and ocelli are dark brown to black. V. mandarinia is distinguished from other hornets by its pronounced clypeus and large genae. Its orange mandible contains a black tooth that it uses for digging. Asian Giant Hornets can grow as large as 2 inches long with a wingspan of 76mm. They are approximately five times larger than the average honey bee, and their 6mm long stinger is filled with venom. This venom contains a neurotoxin called mandaratoxin.  A single sting may potentially cause internal organ damage as well as large welts in the skin.

The Asian Giant Hornet can wipe out bee hives and colonies within hours. In one day alone, the Asian Giant Hornet can fly up to 100km at 40 km/h allowing it to quickly fly towards their victim. In fact, it takes less than 50 Asian Giant Hornets to take down a colony of tens of thousands of bees. Additionally, a single hornet is able to kill 40 honey bees per minute. Essentially, the hornet uses its mandibles and decapitates their victims. This is leading to decline in the population of honey bees. The poor honey bee is nearly helpless against the hornets. Furthermore, the Asian Giant Hornet attacks are a growing concern for beekeepers in the Eastern Asian regions and some beekeepers in Europe. Honey bees are a vital component of our ecosystems and with the growing decline in the honey bee population we would no longer have fresh fruits, vegetables, flowers, and much more.

In the recent times the Asian giant hornet is said to have made its way to Britain where it is threatening the population of the European honey bees as these honey bees don’t stand a chance against the deadly hornets. Considering that the prime victims of these hornet attacks are our most important pollinators i.e. bees, the mayhem that they cause needs to be controlled!

Let us look at some news articles pertaining to the damage caused by these Asian Giant Hornets.

Threat to honeybees as Asian hornet’s arrival on UK mainland confirmed

September 20 2016, the guardian, UK

The Asian hornet’s long-feared arrival on the UK mainland has been confirmed, government scientists have said, with ecologists warning of dire consequences for honeybees if the species is not swiftly eliminated.

The hornets eat honeybees and have become widespread in central and southern France, prompting warnings in recent years that they could arrive in the UK via potted plants from France.

While not considered a threat to humans, the arrival of the hornets add to the woes of Britain’s honeybees, which are vital for pollination of many crops but have been suffering declines for decades.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) said on Tuesday that it had a confirmed sighting of an Asian hornet (Vespa velutina) in the Tetbury area of Gloucestershire. Officials said efforts were already under way to destroy the invasive species, using cameras and traps to locate nests before attempting to kill them off with pesticides.

Nicola Spence, Defra’s deputy director for plant and bee health, said: “We have been anticipating the arrival of the Asian hornet for some years and have a well-established protocol in place to eradicate them and control any potential spread.

“It is important to remember they pose no greater risk to human health than a bee, though we recognize the damage they can cause to honeybee colonies. That’s why we are taking swift and robust action to identify and destroy any nests.”

Matt Shardlow, the chief executive of the charity Bug life, said: “It’s really bad news. The ecological impact is that it potentially affects our ability to feed ourselves in the future.

“In terms of threats to people, as long as it doesn’t reach ridiculous levels of abundance, which it will struggle to do because there is not enough prey here for it, then it shouldn’t really add risk in terms of number of people who die from wasp stings.”

C Tech Corporation with the aid of green technology and great vision,  has designed the product Termirepel™ that can aid in the protection of honey bees from these vicious hornets. Termirepel ™ is a non-toxic, non-hazardous insect and pest aversive. Basically designed to combat termites, it works effectively against a multitude of other insects including wasps and hornets.

Termirepel™ works by the mechanism of repellence by virtue of which it does not allow the insect/pest to come near the application and thus it negates the possibility of an infestation. Moreover it is available in the form of polymer compatible masterbatches as well as in lacquer form to be applied on wood and other furniture. Thus it is easy to apply and safe to use. Also since it is non-toxic it will not cause any harm to the non-target species like bees.

 

 

Emerald Ash Borer!

Agrilus planipennis, commonly known as the emerald ash borer, is a green buprestid or jewel beetle native to northeastern Asia that feeds on ash species. This Asian insect was likely transported in wood crating, pallets and other packing material which was shipped to the United States in the mid-1990s, according to Michigan State University Extension (MSUE). The Emerald Ash Borer is responsible for the destruction of tens of millions of ash trees in 27 states. In its native range, it is typically found at low densities and does not cause significant damage to trees native to the area. Outside its native range, it is an invasive species and is highly destructive to ash trees native to northwest Europe and North America.

EAB populations can quickly rise to damaging levels. Host species include green ash, white ash, black ash, blue ash, and pumpkin ash. After initial infestation, all ash trees are expected to die in an area within 10 years without control measures. Every North American ash species shows susceptibility to EAB as North American species planted in China also shows high mortality due to EAB infestation.

Signs and symptoms are indicators of insect attack. A sign is a physical damage to a tree, such as a gallery, a hole, or a feeding notch in the leaf, resulting from the attack by an insect. A symptom is a tree’s response to insect attack and includes premature yellowing of foliage, dead branches, thinning crowns, or bark cracks. Crown dieback is one common symptom of EAB infestation. Dieback of the upper and outer crown begins after multiple years of Emerald ash borer larval feeding. Trees start to show dead branches throughout the canopy, beginning at the top. Larval feeding disrupts nutrient and water flow to the upper canopy, resulting in leaf loss. Leaves at the top of the tree may be thin and discolored. Let us look at another symptom known as Epicormic Sprouting. When trees are stressed or sick, they try to grow new branches and leaves wherever they still can. Trees may have new growth at the base of the tree and on the trunk, often just below where the larvae are feeding.  Woodpeckers, on the other hand, eat emerald ash borer larvae that are under the bark. This usually happens higher in the tree where the emerald ash borer prefers to attack first. If there are large numbers of larvae under the bark the woodpecker damage can make it look like strips of bark have been pulled off of the tree. This is called “flecking.”

Now let us have a look at the signs of infestation done by an emerald ash borer.

D-shaped emergence holes: As adults emerge from under the bark they create a D-shaped emergence hole that is about 1/8 inch in diameter.

S-shaped larval galleries: As larvae feed under the bark they wind back and forth, creating galleries that are packed with frass (larva poop) and sawdust and follow a serpentine pattern.

Larvae: Larvae are cream-colored, slightly flattened (dorso-ventrally) and have pincher-like appendages (urogomphi) at the end of their abdomen. Larvae are found feeding beneath the bark.

Adults: Adult beetles are metallic green and about the size of one grain of cooked rice (3/8 – 1/2 inch long and 1/16 inch wide). Adults are flat on the back and rounded on their underside.

Here are some recent news articles pertaining to the damage caused by the EAB.

 Public is paying price of emerald ash borer infestation

April 19, 2017, USA
OSCODA – High winds sweeping through Iosco County this month have toppled trees on top of power lines, causing electrical outages and home damage.

Most of the felled trees are dead or dying ash trees, killed by emerald ash borers (EAB), an invasive insect which was discovered in southeastern Michigan and Windsor, Ontario in June 2002.

“Municipalities and homeowners are paying for the EAB invasion,” said Eric Brandon, Alcona Conservation District forester for Alcona and Iosco counties.

EAB are so aggressive that ash trees die within two or three years after becoming infested. Damage is caused by the larvae, feeding in S-shaped tunnels on the inside of bark of branches and tree trunks. It is the inner bark, or phloem, which transports nutrients and water.

Emerald ash borer destroying Door Co. trees

April 11, 2017, USA

Thousands of ash trees are dying as the emerald ash borer eats its way up the Door County peninsula. One of the hot spots for the disease is the downtown of the city where chunks of bark lie under the ash trees and woodpeckers are feasting on the emerging tiny insects.

More than 12 million ash trees throughout the county are at risk since the emerald ash borer bugs were found near Fish Creek and in Sturgeon Bay in 2014. Ash trees account for about 13 percent of the county’s estimated 115 million trees, said Bill Ruff, a forester for the state Department of Natural Resources in Door and Kewaunee counties.

There are a variety of treatment options that can serve as a control measure for the EAB, but they are not a cure.

Insecticides with active ingredients such as imidacloprid, benzoate, and dinotefuran are currently used. These insecticides are toxic in nature. They kill the target as well as the non- target species. They are harmful to human health as well.

C Tech Corporation can offer a solution to overcome the damage caused by EAB to our trees. Termirepel™ is an ideal solution for prevention from damages inflicted by EAB. Termirepel™ is a nontoxic and nonhazardous insect aversive.   It is highly effective against insects like EAB, grasshopper, worms etc. It is cost effective and cost efficient, inert, stable up to 1400 deg Celsius temperature, long lasting etc.

Termirepel is available in the form of polymer masterbatches which can be incorporated in plastic tree guards, fencing of the trees, mulches, etc.

 

 

 

Whitefly damage!

Whiteflies are small Hemipterans that typically feed on the undersides of plant leaves. They comprise the family Aleyrodidae, the only family in the superfamily Aleyrodoidea. They can be as small as 1/12 of an inch, somewhat triangular in shape, and are often found in clusters on the undersides of leaves. They are active during the daytime, so they are easier to spot than some other nocturnal pests. More than 1550 species have been described. Whiteflies develop rapidly in warm weather, and populations can build up quickly in situations where natural enemies are ineffective and when weather and host plants favor outbreaks. Large colonies often develop on the undersides of leaves. The most common pest species such as greenhouse whitefly and sweet potato whitefly have a wide host range that includes many weeds and crops. These species breed all year round in warmer parts of California, moving from one host to another as plants are harvested or dry up. Another species of whitefly with a broad host range is the giant whitefly, Aleurodicus dugesii. It is now found in coastal areas and interior valleys in much of the state on a number of tropical and semi-tropical ornamental species.

Adult whiteflies are moth-like insects with powdery white wings and short antenna. They are easily recognized and often found near the tops of plants or on stem ends. Wingless nymphs are flattened, oval and almost scale-like in appearance.  The full life cycle of the whitefly lasts between 15 to 40 days, depending on environmental conditions, particularly the temperature, as eggs will turn into adults more quickly when the temperature is higher. The whitefly usually lays its eggs on the underside of the leaves and the eggs stick to them by means of a pedicel. The larva or nymphs emerge from the eggs and in their first stage of development, they are mobile enough to move along the leaf until they find the right place to insert their stylus and begin to feed off the sap of the phloem, which is rich in sugars. The nymphs then pass through several more stages of development, during which they remain in the same place and continue to feed off the plant until the adult emerges from the last nymph stage. Non-fertilized eggs produce males while the fertilized eggs produce females.

The whitefly feeds on more than 500 species of host plants. Common targets include ornamental plants, houseplants, hibiscus, coleus, fuchsia, sweet potato (edible and ornamental), tomato, grape, citrus and squash-family plants. Whiteflies use their piercing, needle like mouth parts to suck sap from phloem, the food-conducting tissues in plant stems and leaves. Large populations can cause leaves to turn yellow, appear dry, or fall off plants. Like aphids, whiteflies excrete sugary liquid called honeydew, so leaves may be sticky or covered with black sooty mold that grows on honeydew. The honeydew attracts ants, which interfere with the activities of natural enemies that may control whiteflies and other pests.
Feeding by the immature sweet potato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci, can cause plant distortion, discoloration, or silvering of leaves, and may cause serious losses in some vegetable crops. Some whiteflies transmit viruses to certain vegetable crops. These include the TYLCV (Tomato yellow leaf curl virus), the ToCV (Tomato chlorosis crinivirus) or the TYMV (Tomato Yellow Mosaic Virus). Whiteflies are not normally a problem in fruit trees although their populations can build up in citrus, pomegranate and avocado. In warm or tropical climates and especially in greenhouses, whiteflies present major problems in crop protection. Worldwide economic losses are estimated at hundreds of millions of dollars annually.

Let us look at some news articles pertaining to the damage caused by whiteflies.

Whitefly pest attacks cotton crop in Punjab
July 11 2016, India
Whitefly pest has again attacked cotton crop, now in the flowering stage, in Punjab, posing a threat to the kharif crop even as the opposition Congress lambasted the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD)-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) alliance for its “failure” in preventing the pest attack. “Whitefly has attacked cotton crop in several fields of about 15 villages of Khuian Sarwar block in Abohar,” an official of Punjab Agriculture department said on Monday.

Also in the year 2015, about two-third of Punjab’s cotton crop was destroyed by whiteflies causing an estimated loss of Rs 4,200 crore. There were reports of at least 15 cotton farmers committing suicide.

The damage and loss caused by these tiny whiteflies are huge! We cannot afford this significant amount of crop damage caused by pests like whiteflies. There is an urgent need for a sustainable solution.

Termirepel™ anti-insect additive, a CTech Corporation product is the best solution for the prevention and control of insect infestations. Termirepel™ masterbatch can be incorporated in agricultural films, mulches, greenhouse films etc. during polymer processing. It can also be incorporated in silage bags and packaging films to protect the crops in the post-harvest stage from pest damage.
Termirepel™ lacquer can be added to paints which can then be applied to fencing, etc. It follows 6 tiered mechanism, which is extremely effective on insects like whiteflies, ants, beetles, grasshopper, termites etc. Termirepel™ is a nontoxic and nonhazardous anti-insect additive. It is thermally stable and does not degrade on exposure to heat and sunlight. It does not kill or harm the insect but repels them. It does not volatilize and does not degrade the soil. It is RoHS, RoHS2, REACH compliant and FIFRA exempted.

Aphids:Huge threat to our plants!

Aphids, also known as plant lice, are small sap-sucking insects and members of the super family Aphidoidea. Aphids are among the most destructive insect pests on cultivated plants in temperate regions. They are capable of extremely rapid increase in numbers by asexual reproduction. The damage they do to plants has made them enemies of farmers and gardeners around the world. About 4,400 species of aphids are known, all included in the family Aphididae. Around 250 species are serious pests for agriculture and forestry as well as an annoyance for gardeners. They vary in length from 1 to 10 millimeters. Aphids are small, soft-bodied, pear-shaped insects that are frequently found in large numbers. Their bodies may be translucent, but are usually various shades of green, brown, yellow, or white, sometimes blending in with the plant on which they are feeding. Many aphid species have two tube-like structures, called cornicles, which extend from the back and secrete a defensive fluid. Adult forms may be winged or wingless, depending upon their stage of development during the season. Winged forms have four membranous wings that rest upright above the body.

A generation of aphids survives the winter as eggs, which allows them to withstand extreme environmental conditions of temperature and moisture. In spring the eggs on the plant hatch, leading to the first generation of aphids. All the aphids born from the winter eggs are females. Several more generations of female aphids are born during the spring and summer. A female can live for 25 days, during which time she can produce up to 80 new aphids. Spring and summer reproduction occurs asexually. In these cases, the resulting aphids are basically clones of the mother. In addition, the young are born live rather than as eggs. When the fall approaches, there is a generation that grows into both male and female individuals. Females fertilized by the males lay winter eggs on the plant where they are, closing the cycle.

Aphid damage is usually most noticeable on shade trees and ornamental plantings. Leaves, twigs, stems, or roots may be attacked by aphids, whose mouthparts are designed for piercing the plant and sucking the sap. Aphids attack nearly all species of plants. When leaves are attacked by aphids, damage often appears first as spotty yellow discolorations, usually on the undersides of leaves; the leaves may later dry out and wilt. Some aphid species form galls or cause distorted, curled, or deformed leaves. The galls are swellings of plant tissues that are usually globular or spindle shaped, with mouth-like openings. Many galls turn brown and are considered unsightly. Each gall or deformed leaf may contain numerous aphids in all stages of development. Aphids attached to other plant parts such as stems or twigs may cause stunted growth, early leaf fall, or twig mortality. Many aphid species secrete honeydew from the anus; this sweet, sticky substance consists mainly of excess sap ingested by the insect and contains sugars and waste materials. At times, enough honeydew may be secreted to cover not only the aphid infested foliage but also objects below the affected tree or shrub. After a time a black, sooty fungus that grows on honeydew and gives everything it has covered a dirty gray appearance. Because of its sweetness, the honeydew attracts other pests such as flies, wasps, and especially ants, whose presence may be the first visible sign of an aphid infestation.

Let us look at some news articles pertaining to the damage caused by aphids.

Aphids seen at threshold level in southwest Missouri wheat
March 23, 2017, USA

Jill Scheidt, agronomy specialist with University of Missouri Extension, scouted fields west of Lamar and near Iantha for the March 1 crop scouting update.

Wheat was found to be in the tillering stage.

“Wait to apply nitrogen until just before jointing stage, when nitrogen is most efficiently used. Early nitrogen applications should only be made if tiller count is below 60 tillers per square foot,” said Scheidt. “This avoids overly lush growth, which can make wheat susceptible to disease, aphids, lodging and late freeze damage.”

Aphids damage early crops
August 6, 2013

 There has been significant aphid damage to early sown crops, particular in central NSW.

Pest Facts reported there were many accounts of damage in the Central Tablelands region around Mudgee, NSW.

The damage began in July once the resistance imparted by seed treatment wore off.

Oats have been one of the worst impacted crops.

Oat aphid, corn aphid and rose grain aphid favor barley, but are found in all cereal crops. Heavy infestations of these sap sucking insects cause the crop to turn yellow, be stunted and generally appear unthrifty.

All three aphids can damage crops by feeding on them and in some instances by spreading barley yellow dwarf virus.

According to a recent study by researchers at Iowa State University aphids has become a threat to soybean in the recent years because they possess a unique ability to block the genetic defense response of soybeans and may open the door for other pests to do even more damage to the crops. Their research further made significant contribution as the scientist stated that Aphids emerged as a serious threat to Iowa soybeans around 2000. The insects are native to Asia and most likely came to the United States via international travelers or plants brought into the country.  In the years since, aphids have caused soybean farmers major headaches, reducing yields in affected fields by up to 40 percent, a scientist said.

These creatures thus cause a lot of damage in the agricultural sector. Also they invite more pests like the ants to the plants further endangering them. Conventional methods used to combat them include the use of toxic pesticides which are extremely hazardous to the environment. New methods need to be developed to do away with aphids for good. The method used should be 100% effective and should not endanger the environment in any way whatsoever.

Termirepel™ is a non-toxic, non-hazardous insect and pest repellant. It can be best described as a termite aversive. It is effective against a multitude of other insects and pests like weevils, beetles, bugs, aphids etc. It works on the mechanism of repellence and therefore does not kill the target as well as non-target species. Being non-toxic, it does not harm the soil and environment. Termirepel™ can be added to a thin agricultural film to protect plants and crops from insects like aphids. It can also be incorporated in irrigation pipes to ward of pests.

 

 

 

 

Woodworm damage!

Woodworm is the wood-eating larvae of any of many species of beetle. It is a collective term used to describe all wood-boring insects that attack wood and timber, causing structural damage to buildings. There are a number of wood boring insects that attack timber with the most common being the ‘Common Furniture Beetle’  that attacks soft wood. One may not realize that they have a woodworm problem until the resulting damage becomes visible. If left untreated woodworm can seriously weaken timber which may lead to structural failure of timbers. The levels of damage to the property are dependent on the size of the woodworm infestation. Fresh exit holes in timber, tunnels in wood, bore dust, weak and damaged floorboards, crumbling wood, dead beetles, eggs are some of the common signs of woodworm infestation. Any of these signs could mean you have a woodworm infestation.

Round or oval shaped holes with sharp edges are a clear indication of woodworm infestation. Tunnels in wood, also known as galleries are the result of woodworm boring through the infected timber. Bore dust, also known as frass, is caused by emerging adult beetles. This is usually visible below the infested timber. Crumbling wood can be found around corners or edges of roof joists or floorboards.

The amount of harm caused by woodworm depends on the species of beetle and the type of wood.

Common Furniture Beetle: Attacks softwood (conifer) and the sapwood of European hardwoods. Rarely causes structural weakening although tunneling along the grain of the wood can potentially cause extensive collapse.

House Longhorn Beetle: Only attacks the sapwood of softwood timbers. As softwood is often used in roof timbers, an infestation can often result in severe structural weakening.

Powder post Beetle: Causes damage to wide-pored hardwood with a high starch content, such as ash, elm, and oak. Tunnels along the grain and can cause severe damage, often infesting block or parquet flooring.

Deathwatch Beetle: Prefers European hardwoods, especially oak, ash and chestnut that have been “softened” by partial decay. The larvae tend to tunnel towards the center of the timber, so that damage may be more extensive than is apparent from the exterior.

Let us look at some news articles pertaining to the damage caused by the woodworms.

Revealed: how altarpiece broke in disastrous fall at London’s National Gallery
Recently published records show that 14th-century work suffered serious damage in 1989
June 9, 2016, UK
The Art Newspaper has learned that a 14th-century Italian altarpiece from the National Gallery in London fell and broke in two in 1989. According to recently published trustees’ minutes from the time, the gallery’s then-director, Neil MacGregor, told the board that it was “probably the most serious non-malicious damage in the gallery’s history, [and] particularly regrettable as the altarpiece had one of the very few original 14th-century frames surviving”. The bulletin reported: “Over the centuries, the canopies above the central panel had become so eroded by woodworm that they were unfortunately damaged during the process of examination… the woodworm damage probably happened over many decades during an infestation of the sacristy or oratory in Tuscany, where the altarpiece was cited in its early history.” There was no mention that it had fallen and broken in two.

Are woodworm infestations about to chew their way through your home?
May 19, 2015, UK

PLYMOUTH residents are being urged to be wary of a woodworm infestation of their homes this spring.

The insect traditionally emerges in households during this time of year and an infestation of the bug could result in severe structural building damage.

Also known as the Common Furniture Beetle, signs to look out for of an active woodworm infestation include the appearance of tell-tale new emergence holes and the dust – known as frass – which falls from them.

Woodworm can infest a wide variety of timber.

This can include structural building timbers, furniture, and even wooden ornaments.

If left unchecked, and with the right conditions, infestations can even lead to the total collapse of vulnerable timbers within a building.

The conventional use of insecticides is no longer considered to be a safe and effective method to get rid of these woodworms. Some insecticides are even not advisable due to their toxicity and potentially damaging effect on human health and the environment. Moreover, overuse of toxic chemicals in residential settings puts occupants at risk so it’s preferable to avoid unneeded repeat treatments.

So do we have a green solution for this problem? Yes, we do! CTech Corporation’s Termirepel™.   Termirepel™ an anti-termite and anti-insect polymer additive is an ideal solution for the prevention and control of woodworms. It follows 6 pronged strategy which is extremely effective against woodworms as well as insects like ants, termites, grasshopper, bugs etc.

Termirepel™ is nontoxic and nonhazardous anti termite and anti-insect additive. It is thermally stable and does not degrade on exposure to heat and sunlight. It does not kill or harm the insect but repels them. It is RoHS, RoHS2, REACH compliant and FIFRA exempted. Termirepel™ is available in the form of a masterbatch, liquid concentrate, and lacquer solution. Termirepel™ lacquer can be applied as a top coat over the wooden objects and furniture to protect them from the woodworm damage.

 

Roaches found everywhere!

Cockroaches are insects of the order Blattodea, which also includes termites. Currently, 4600 species and over 460 genera are described worldwide. They are an ancient group, dating back at least as far as the Carboniferous period, some 320 million years ago. Cockroaches are somewhat generalized insects without special adaptations like the sucking mouth parts of aphids and other true bugs; they have chewing mouth parts and are likely among the most primitive of living neopteran insects. They are common and hardy insects, and can tolerate a wide range of environments from Arctic cold to tropical heat. Most species of cockroach are about the size of a thumbnail, but several species are bigger. They have a relatively small head and a broad, flattened body, and most species are reddish-brown to dark brown. They have large compound eyes, two ocelli, and long, flexible antennae. The mouth parts are on the underside of the head and include generalized chewing mandibles, salivary glands and various touch and taste receptors.

Cockroaches are one stubborn species of insects to eradicate. They show a fascinating and unbelievable knack for survival against all odds that is almost enviable. And they are not just in our houses but everywhere, where they can find food. Cockroaches cause damage in the following ways:

Feeding Damage: One of the earliest and most easily disregarded signs of cockroach damage is the signs of feeding. Most roaches infesting homes, chew on starchy items. Furthermore, cockroaches love to live in areas that are particularly damp or dark. The German cockroach feed on books and their bindings thereby destroying them. These cockroaches are also very fond of starchy food like cereal, sugary substances and meat products. The larger roaches usually prefer chewing on paper products, thus destroying them in the process. In addition, the fecal material from feeding can contaminate food and stain other products.

Disease Transmission: Cockroaches transmit numerous diseases. Cockroaches produce secretions that can affect the flavor of various foods and have also been implicated in the transmission of diseases. Disease-producing organisms such as bacteria, protozoa, and viruses have been found in cockroach bodies. Different forms of gastroenteritis (food poisoning, dysentery, diarrhea, etc.) appear to be the principal diseases transmitted by these cockroaches. These disease-causing organisms are carried on the legs and bodies of cockroaches, and are deposited on food and utensils as cockroaches forage.
Allergies: A host of studies recognize cockroaches and their byproducts as strong indoor allergenic agents. Since the prevalence of asthma in children has been increasing steadily over the years, the need to control cockroaches is more important than ever. An increased exposure to cockroach allergens is one key factor responsible for the higher prevalence of asthma in poor urban areas.

Let us look at some evidences of damage by these cockroaches worldwide

  • Cockroach infestation forces temporary closure of Burbank restaurant
    March 30 2017, Los Angeles Daily News, USA
  • Sewage discharge, cockroach, rodent infestations force temporary closures at 8 San Fernando Valley restaurants
    February 20 2017, Los Angeles Daily News, USA
  • Cockroach ‘infestation’ discovered at hospital
    January 3 2017, UK
    Across the four hospitals run by The Pennine Acute Hospital Trust in Greater Manchester – The Royal Oldham Hospital, Rochdale Infirmary, Fairfield General Hospital in Bury and North Manchester General Hospital – there were 302 pest sightings in the past year. Reports between April 2015 and March 2016 included a cockroach ‘infestation’ in the day surgery ward at the Royal Oldham Hospital, maggots found in the accident and emergency ward kitchen and a call logged from the Royal Oldham Hospital laundry which read: “Urgent – there are lots of cockroaches”.

A spokesman for Pennine Acute said: “Recent mild winters have seen an increase in vermin across the country. “We take patient, staff and visitor safety seriously and deploy preventative measures to pest control by employing a pest control contractor to visit each of our four hospitals every week, particularly in areas where facilities are susceptible to vermin.”We have also introduced additional housekeeping measures, such as frequently emptying bins and cleaning across our sites.”

  • Cockroach-Infestation In Newborn Ward At Frere Hospital Stains Record: Da
    October 15 2016, South Africa
    An apparent infestation of cockroaches at Frere Hospital’s M1-N “Kangaroo Ward” for mothers awaiting the release of their premature and newborn babies is a stain on the good record of the facility, the Democratic Alliance (DA) in the Eastern Cape said on Wednesday.
    “The DA truly values the sterling work performed by Dr Rolene Wagner and her team at the Frere Hospital and requests that Ward M1-N, and specifically the loose fittings in the ward, should be fumigated and inspected before any more infants and new moms are expected to share a neonatal ward room with cockroaches,” said Celeste Barker, the DA’s Eastern Cape Shadow MEC for Health.
    She said that last week Thursday, Bronwen Spenceley — the young mom of a premature baby girl weighing just 1.5kg – was admitted to M1-N. The ward, though appearing to be clean, has proven to be unhygienic and hazardous.
    “The ward, though appearing to be clean, has proven to be unhygienic and hazardous.
    “The bedside metal cabinets are crawling with cockroaches and when a heater is switched on, the insects come crawling out of all possible apertures – including the beds,” described Barker.

These roaches need to be dealt with. One very important and essential way of doing it is maintaining proper hygiene at all times at all places especially in places like eateries where food is abundant and supervision is lacking. Other conventional methods include the use of potentially toxic and dangerous chemicals as insecticides and pesticides. But the use of these chemicals though conventional should be stopped as there is a chance of human contact and food contamination.
So do we have an effective solution for this problem? Yes we do!
Termirepel™ is non-toxic and non-hazardous insect/termite repellent. It works on the concept of green chemistry repels the target species and does not kill them. Termirepel™ is available in the form of lacquer and can be applied on wooden articles such as door frames, food storage cupboards, etc. It can also be incorporated in paint to be applied on surfaces which need protection. Termirepel™ can thus effectively keep cockroaches away from our food as well as our lives!

Weevil nuisance!

Insects are the most diverse species of animals living on earth. They are undoubtedly the most adaptable form of life as their total numbers far exceed that of any other animal category. It has been estimated that between one quarter and one third of the world grain crop is lost each year during storage. Much of this is due to insect attack. In addition, grain which is not lost is severely reduced in quality by insect damage. Many grain pests preferentially eat out grain embryos, thereby reducing the protein content of feed grain and lowering the percentage of seeds which germinate. Herbivorous insects are said to be responsible for destroying one fifth of the world’s total crop production annually. Some important stored grain pests include rice weevil, maize weevils, grain borers and rust red flour beetle.
A complex of weevils, the rice (Sitophilus oryza), granary (Sitophilus granarius), and maize (Sitophilus zeamais) weevils, are among the most destructive pests of grains, seeds, and grain products stored in elevators and bins. These weevils are pests of grain throughout the world.

Rice Weevil: The rice weevil is a small snout beetle which varies in size, but it averages about three thirty-second inch in length. It varies from a dull red-brown to black, and is usually marked on the back with four light red to yellow spots. The rice weevil has fully developed wings beneath its wing covers and can fly readily. The larval stage of this insect is a soft, white, legless, fleshy grub which feeds on the interior of the grain kernel. When mature, the grub changes to a naked white pupa and later emerges as an adult beetle.

Maize Weevil: The maize weevil, known in the United States as the greater rice weevil, is a species of beetle in the family Curculionidae. It is a major pest of maize. This species attacks both standing crops and stored cereal products, including wheat, rice, sorghum, oats, barley, peas, and cottonseed. The maize weevil also infests other types of stored, processed cereal products such as pasta, cassava, and various coarse, milled grains. It has even been known to attack fruit while in storage, such as apples.

Granary Weevil: Also known as the wheat weevil or the grain weevil, the granary weevil is a common pantry pest found in temperate climates across the globe. They are closely related to the rice and maize weevils. The granary weevil is most often found wherever grain and wheat products are stored, as they are the main sources of food for both larvae and adults. A large population of granary weevil can cause a great deal of damage. Granary weevils are known for destroying the grains and seeds it uses to eat, lay eggs and develop into an adult.

Of the three, the rice weevil is probably the most insidious, owing largely to the ability of flight. All three weevils develop as larvae within the grain kernels. They frequently cause almost complete destruction of grain in elevators or bins, where conditions are favorable and the grain is undisturbed for some length of time. Infested grain are usually found heating at the surface, sometimes to such an extent that sprouting occurs. Wheat, corn, macaroni, oats, barley, sorghum, kaffir seed, and buckwheat are just some of the grains and products on which these weevils feed. The weevil chews a small hole in the seed and lays an egg in the resulting cavity. The larva bores throughout the seed and pupates there. Corn is a favorite host of the maize weevil, and can become infested in the field as well as in storage.

Let us look at some news articles pertaining to the damage caused by weevils.

Scientists caution farmers of banana weevil attack
March 23 2015, The Hindu, India
Scientists of the Agricultural Research Station (ARS) and Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK), Virinjipuram have cautioned banana growers in Vellore to keep an eye on banana pseudostem weevil attack on the plantation. A team of scientists had recently spotted high incidence of pseudostem weevil attack on a banana field at Kavasampattu.
R. Rajendiran, director of Tamil Nadu Rice Research Institute, Aduthurai, along with M. Pandiyan, professor and head of ARS and KVK and scientists from ARS, Virinjipuram spotted the pest attack during a visit to a field recently.
The banana pseudostem weevil is a serious attack on bananas. The pest affects varieties of bananas such as “karpuravalli”, “mondan”, “rashthali” that is cultivated in large areas of the district, officials said.
“At least 4,000 hectares of land are under banana cultivation in the district. The incidence of this pest attack is found high in poorly maintained fields. It also spreads to nearby fields,” Mr. Pandiyan said.
Scientists said that being a monophagous pest, the weevils multiply in area where banana is cultivated continuously. This was the case with the farmer at Kavasampattu who has been continuously raising bananas on one acre of land, he added.
Both larvae and adult pest can cause severe damage. As adults are strong fliers, it can move from plant to plant. In the grub stage, it can make extensive tunnels in the leaf sheaths and bore into the pseudostem.

Conventional pesticides used have numerous environmental consequences. The use of toxic pesticides means exposing our pristine soil to the evils of degeneration, degradation of soil quality, ground water pollution, etc. A better way is to use non-conventional products. Unconventional products like Termirepel™ a product of C Tech Corporation are the best for this job. Termirepel™ can be pest described as a non-toxic, non-hazardous termite and insect aversive. It is effective against a multitude of other insects and pests like weevils, beetles, etc. It works on the mechanism of repellence and therefore does not kill the target as well as non-target species. Being non-toxic, it does not harm the soil and environment.

Leaf cutter ant menace!

Leafcutter ants, also known as cut ants or fungus ant, are any of the 47 species of leaf-chewing ants belonging to  two genera Atta and Acromyrmex. These species of tropical, fungus-growing ants are all endemic to South and Central America, Mexico, and parts of the southern United States. Leaf cutting ants live in large colonies of up to two million. The name comes from their habit of cutting leaves and other plant parts from a variety of plants. An interesting fact about these ants is that they can carry more than 5000 times their body weight. Leaf cutter ants can be extremely destructive to landscape plants, gardens and some agricultural crops. In extreme cases, these ants are capable of destroying entire citrus trees in the span of a day and can lead to an annual decrease in crop yield in affected areas. In North and South America, damages caused by leaf cutter ants amount to $1 billion in losses. These ants mostly damage weeds, grasses, plum and peach trees, blackberry bushes and many other fruit, nut and ornamental plants as well as several cereal and forage crops.

leaf cutter ants are mostly found in warm areas. One of the most unique things about these ants is that they cultivate and feed on fungus within their nest. These ants cut and process fresh vegetation including leaves, flowers etc. which serves as the nutritional substrate for their fungal activity.

The foraging leaf cutter worker ant is reddish or rust-colored. They range from 1/12 to 1/2 inch in length. The winged reproductive leaf cutter ants can be 1-1/4 inch longer. These ants have a spiny body and long legs. A leaf cutter ant nest can cover up to many hundred square feet in area coverage. These nests can extend as far as ten-twelve feet into the ground. A mature colony of leaf cutter ants could contain 100,000 insects which mostly consist of sterile female workers. These female leaf cutter workers are divided into four castes—major, minor, media and minim. Major workers are soldiers; minors guard the nests and trails; media forage for food; and minims tend the fungus gardens.

Leaf-cutter ants damage vegetation by removing the foliage which is further carried to their nests. They can also remove all the leaves from a tree in one night. The leaves are not eaten.  They are chewed into a material similar to pulp. This pulp further produces a fungus that feeds the colony. Different species of ants use different species of fungus, but all of the fungi the ants use are members of the Lepiotaceae family. The ants actively cultivate their fungus, feeding it with freshly cut plant material and keeping it free from pests and molds. Defoliation by leaf cutting ants can resemble damage produced by several other leaf chewing insects, particularly sawflies and leaf cutting bees. Considerable damage to a plant can occur in a few hours. Small- to medium-sized trees can be stripped in one night. One researcher in South America estimated that a large leaf cutting ant colony harvested approximately 13,000 pounds of leaves over a 6-year period. This same colony excavated 802 cubic feet of soil weighing over 44 tons.

Let us look at some news articles pertaining to the damage caused by leaf cutter ants and also how these ants are immune to the conventional insecticides and poison baits.

Garden Sage: Growths on an oleander; leaf-cutter ants; a spectacular silk floss tree
By Peter L. Warren , October 1, 2016, Arizona

Question: Our hopseed bushes suddenly had no leaves, and we think it is from leaf-cutter ants. We also noticed our palo verde tree near their mound has no leaves.  There are a few mounds near the hopseed bushes and palo verde tree. We also just put in a brick paver driveway and are concerned that the ants will damage it. What should we do?

A: Leaf-cutting ants are often difficult to manage. Although plants can be protected temporarily using insecticides, they need to be reapplied frequently, and these chemicals kill other insects that may be beneficial or harmless. The nests may be very large, hard to find and difficult to manage with insecticides. Because these ants don’t eat the leaves directly, they do not respond to most ant baits.

Leaf Cutter Ants Chew up Photographer’s Camera Gear

June 8, 2016, Brazil

“It’s not just the big guys you have to be worried about when setting up a camera trap in the jungle, you should probably look out for ants too” explains Naturalist Phil Torres

Torres is a biologist, conservationist, naturalist, and photographer, and he was in the Amazon rainforest with photographer Jeff Cremer of Rainforest Expeditions when they tried to set up a simple camera trap using a Canon 7D, an off-camera flash, and an IR sensor.

Everything was neatly bagged up to keep it out of the rain, and the gear was tested and in good condition. But when they arrived the next morning, they found all the bags and coverings gone, Jeff’s tripods and cables chewed up, and all of his gear waterlogged beyond saving.

The culprit? The tiny leaf cutter ants!

It turned out Cremer and Torres had set up the trap just a few feet away from the ants’ nest. Overnight, the ants came and cut the bags to pieces, chewed into the gorilla pods and cables, and left whatever gear was still working exposed to the elements so the rain could finish the job. In all, the ants caused about $2,800 worth of damage.

Leafcutter ants are a serious agricultural threat. Thus we need a long term and effective solution to control their nuisance. We at CTech Corporation have a solution to avoid the damages caused by these pesky ants. Termirepel™ anti-insect additive, a CTech Corporation product is the best solution for the prevention and control of insect infestations. It follows 6 tiered mechanism, which is extremely effective on insects like ants, termites, beetles etc. Termirepel™ masterbatch can be incorporated in agricultural films, mulches, greenhouse films etc. during polymer processing. The incorporation of our masterbatches into the films would keep the leaf cutter ants away from the crops which need to be protected.  Also Termirepel™ liquid concentrate can be added to paints which can then be applied to fencing, etc. for protection. Termirepel™ is a nontoxic and nonhazardous anti-insect additive. It is thermally stable and does not degrade on exposure to heat and sunlight. It does not kill or harm the insect but repels them. It does not volatilize and does not degrade the soil. It is RoHS, RoHS2, REACH compliant and FIFRA exempted.

 

Carpenter Ants!

Carpenter ants are large ants indigenous to many forested parts of the world. They are among the largest ants found in the United States. Most of these ants are black in color, but some species may also have reddish or yellowish coloration. Carpenter ants can grow as long as three-fourths of an inch, depending on the type. Queen lays 9 to 16 eggs the first year and may live up to 25 years. Eggs complete their life cycle in about 6 to 12 weeks. The body of these carpenter ants has three distinct sections consisting of the head, thorax, and abdomen. The thorax and abdomen are visibly divided by a pinched waist, which helps distinguish carpenter ants from termites. They also have six legs and a pair of elbowed, or bent, antennae.

These ants are found everywhere, both outdoor as well as indoor, mostly in moist and hollow wood. They are capable of damaging any wood within which they nest. The ants further cut galleries into the wood grain to form their nests and provide passageways for movement from section to section of the nest.  Galleries excavated from damp or damaged wood are mostly preferred by them to establish their colonies. Carpenter ants infestation can become severe when left untreated. These ants do not eat wood as termites do; instead, they remove the wood and deposit debris outside of their nests in small piles. Usually, the carpenter ants build two types of nests: parent colonies and satellite colonies. Parent colonies consist of a queen, her brood, and workers. Satellite colonies consist of workers, older larvae, and pupae. Workers create satellite colonies when the parent colony lacks sufficient space or when there is a suitable supply of food or water. There may be several satellite colonies associated with a parent colony.

The amount of damage caused by such nesting and infestations on a property varies. If a colony has been actively infesting a property for a long period of time, the structural damage can be very extensive. That’s why it’s crucial to have infestations treated as quickly as possible. One sign of carpenter ant damage is the appearance of small, circular galleries on the surface of the wood. The worker carpenter ants excavate sawdust-like debris around or below the exit holes. The area inside the galleries appears smooth and free of debris. This damage caused due to tunneling is huge.Also, the carpenter ants are usually drawn to moisture. Thus colonies of carpenter ants infiltrate homes and build nests in the wood near windows, doorframes, attics, chimneys, bathtubs, and any other area in the home with damaged or waterlogged wood. Carpenter ants often gravitate to homes with leaks that allow excess moisture to permeate the structure.

These pests do not eat wood but use it only for the purpose of building nests. Thus they are commonly attracted to human food sources, such as sweets, meats, and fats. Food items like sugar, honey, and syrup are highly attractive to carpenter ants. The insects are also drawn to grease spills and overripe fruit.

Let us look at some news articles pertaining to the damage caused by the carpenter ants.

Blog: Spring has sprung and so have the carpenter ants

March 21, 2017, Canada

Carpenter ants are plentiful in Delta, and are common pests in homes, sheds and other buildings. In spring carpenter ants are more active at night and by using a flashlight you can find the main nest outdoors. In structures, the presence of sawdust is a key clue in locating ant nests. The most common carpenter ants are the familiar large, black ants that are 4 mm or more in length and shiny black. If you find both small and large ants then there is likely more than one queen in the nest, if they are all the same size then there is only one queen. Carpenter ants chew through wet and rotting wood and can cause structural damage. They discard the wood, not using it as a food source like termites, and tunnel to create their satellites nests where eggs are stored in the hollowed frame. Damage can go unnoticed until the wood structural integrity has become compromised.

Carpenter ant damage results in increase in bridge repair costs

November 2016, USA

The cost to maintain and repair a bridge nearly doubled recently and experts say part of the problem is due to carpenter ants.

The bridge we’re talking about is the Scipio Road Bridge over Keshequa Creek in Livingston County. Leaders there say the repairs need to be done now or that cost could grow even more.

Kathy Link owns a furniture shop in Mt. Morris. Since she opened six years ago, she says they’ve been watching out for carpenter ants.

“They can eat it right up,” says Link. “They can make a mess — that’s what they do.”

And that’s exactly what carpenter ants did to a small portion of Scipio Road’s bridge. The projected cost to replace the deck skyrocketed from $442,000 to $643,000 after inspectors found severe bug damage in the first four feet on each end of the 100-foot wooden deck.

Carpenter ants on rise, causing problems in Windsor

July 7, 2014, Canada

Pest management companies in Canada say it’s likely that an unusually snowy winter has allowed a high number of carpenter ants to survive the winter.

They say the number of carpenter ants is on the rise in Windsor, Ont., and Halifax, N.S.

Steve Pelletier of Steve’s Pest Management says he has already responded to 220 calls for carpenter ants this year. He had 237 carpenter ants calls in all of 2013.

Windsor is not alone in its fight against carpenter ants. Residents in Halifax, N.S., have also noticed an increase in the number of carpenter ants.

Now, they’re out foraging for food and establishing new colonies.

“In the early spring or late fall, you’ll see large ants moving around in the house. They’re low on the feed so they start wandering and looking for food,” he said. “Most people complain when they actually see the ants.”

Stewart said 95 per cent of a colony stays in its main nest, but there could be 13 satellite nests in one location.

“You won’t see the damage until much later on,” Stewart said.

So is there an effective solution for this problem? Yes, there is. Termirepel ™, an anti-insect additive, a C Tech Corporation product is an ideal solution for the prevention and control of carpenter ants infestation. It follows 6 pronged strategy which is extremely effective in preventing the damage caused by these ants as well as insects like bedbugs, beetles, grasshopper, termites etc. Termirepel™ is a non-toxic, non-hazardous and environment-friendly product, with a high efficacy to repel insects like carpenter ants from the wood. It is thermally stable and does not degrade on exposure to heat and sunlight. It does not kill or harm the insect but repels them. It is RoHS, RoHS2, REACH compliant and FIFRA exempted. Termirepel™ in solution form can be injected at a high pressure in the lumber so as to prevent the infestation. It is also available in lacquer form which can be applied on the furniture, patios, floor, doorframes, windows, attics as a coating so as to prevent further infestation.

 

 

 

 

Green way to combat Bedbug menace!

Bed bugs are flat, reddish-brown, oval insects up to 4 to 5 mm long or the size of an apple seed. Bedbugs do not fly, but they can move quickly over floors, walls, and ceilings. The common bed bug (Cimex lectularius) has  been a pest feeding on blood, causing itchy bites and generally irritating the human hosts. Bedbugs are considered to be a public health pest by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) . Bedbugs can live anywhere in the home. They can live in cracks in furniture or in any type of textile, including upholstered furniture. They are most common in beds, including the mattress, box springs, and bed frames.

Bedbugs are most active at night. They may bite any exposed areas of skin while an individual is sleeping. Common locations for bedbug bites are the face, neck, hands, and arms. Bed Bugs feed exclusively on blood, and people have various responses to Bed Bug Bites. They feed by piercing the skin and withdrawing blood through an elongated beak. The bugs feed from three to ten minutes to become engorged and then crawl away unnoticed.

Most bedbug bites are painless at first, but later turn into itchy welts. Unlike flea bites that are mainly around the ankles, bedbug bites are on any area of skin exposed while sleeping.

Let us now look at the characteristics of bedbugs. Adult bed bugs are light brown to reddish-brown, flattened, oval-shaped, and have no hind wings. The front wings are vestigial and reduced to pad-like structures. Bed bugs have segmented abdomens with microscopic hair that gives them a banded appearance. Adults grow to 4–5 mm long and 1.5–3 mm wide.

Female bedbugs can deposit one to five eggs a day, and may lay 200 to 500 eggs in a Bed Bug’s lifetime. Under normal room temperatures and with an adequate food supply, they can live for more than 300 days. Newly hatched nymphs are translucent, light in color, and become browner as they molt and reach maturity. A bed bug nymph of any age that has just consumed a blood meal has a bright red, translucent abdomen, fading to brown over the next several hours, and to opaque black within two days as the insect digests its meal.

Let us look at some recent news articles pertaining to the bedbug menace.

Bed bugs found at two Norfolk schools

March 24, 2017, Norfolk, USA

Bed bugs have been found at two public schools in Norfolk.

Norfolk Public Schools say both incidents involved a single bed bug located in a classroom, happening at Ruffner Academy and Lake Taylor High School.

Bed bugs take over a Denver woman’s apartment

March 20, 2017, Denver, USA

Upon stepping into Elizabeth Trujillo’s apartment in Columbine Towers, it doesn’t take long to notice an infestation.

They’re bed bugs, and they’re crawling everywhere. Trujillo said the problem wasn’t always so visible.

“It’s so bad, “said Trujillo.

The infestation is so bad; the bugs were crawling on Trujillo during Denver7 interview. She says she’s been living in the apartment complex for two years, but the bed bugs issue began about a year and half ago.

“I’m tired of living with bed bugs. If they aren’t in my bathtub, they are in my bed and on the floor. They are crawling all over the place,” said Trujillo.

Bedbugs invade school for the deaf in Koforidua

March 19, 2017, Koforidua, Ghana

The Koforidua School for the deaf has been hit by bedbug infestation.
Starr News sources say the pupils reported the development to the school authorities, prompting a fumigation of the compound. However, the insects have refused to disappear causing discomfort for the school and disturbing pupils in their hostel.

Bedbug re-infestation frustrates residents

March 15, 2017, Glasgow, Scotland

Camilla Marshall has scars spotting her arms from an infestation of bedbugs that affected several apartments last May in the Woodbine Crest Seniors Complex where she lives in New Glasgow.

Marshall was upset to learn last week that bedbugs had been spotted once again in her complex, albeit in a different section of the building. She said this is the third time bedbugs have been reported in recent years in the complex, adding it’s frustrating to her and other residents.

The Eastern Mainland Housing Authority did treat the affected apartment this time, but Marshall said it still concerns her. She lost a lot when her apartment was impacted last year. She believes the bugs got into her apartment on a piece of furniture another resident had given her.

That gift ended up costing her much more than she expected.

“I lost my headboard, footboard, box spring, mattress, book case, chesterfield and a $800 Lazy Boy chair,” she said.

She estimates she lost about $3,000 from the ordeal, but wasn’t given any compensation.

So how do we get rid of them? Regular pest control is considered to be one of the solutions. However the use of toxic insecticides is now proving to be futile in getting rid of these nasty little creatures. A 2013 study in the journal Nature Scientific Reports suggested that bedbugs have evolved ways to resist insecticides.

So is there any other effective solution for this problem? Yes there is.

Termirepel ™, an anti-insect additive, a C Tech Corporation product is an ideal solution for the prevention and control of bedbug infestation. It follows 6 pronged strategy which is extremely effective in preventing the damage caused by bedbugs as well as insects like ants, beetles, grasshopper, termites etc. Termirepel™ is a nontoxic and nonhazardous insect repellent. It is thermally stable and does not degrade on exposure to heat and sunlight. It does not kill or harm the insect but repels them. It is RoHS, RoHS2, REACH compliant and FIFRA exempted. The product in the form of liquid concentrate can be blended in any paint or organic solvent and can be applied over the various surfaces vulnerable to damages caused by bedbugs like the walls, ceiling etc. Termirepel™ lacquer can also be used as a coating for furniture for protection. The masterbatch of Termirepel™ can be incorporated in wires and cables which are used in domestic wiring.

 

 

 

Combating pest damage in shipping containers!

Today shipping industry has become a dynamic market. From 2000 to 2008 world trade increased by an average 5.4 per cent each year. As markets are becoming increasingly globalized, necessity for shipping bigger volumes of cargo in less time possible is also increasing. Tankers, shipping containers and bulk carriers are the most important means of transportation of today’s time. About 90 percent of world trade is carried by the international shipping industry! Containers have boosted globalization more than all trade agreements in the past 50 years put together! Earlier the goods to be shipped used to be crammed in to the hold of a ship and loose cargo in wooden crates would be loaded and unloaded by vast crews of dockworkers. The process was unwieldy, unreliable and so slow that ships often spent longer docked than they did at sea. Containers changed this in several ways. The price of everything fell, starting with the cost of loading and unloading. However some notorious pests like insects are proving to be a major threat to the shipping industry. They not only damage the goods being shipped but are also dangerous as these pests carry and spread deadly diseases. Also introduction of foreign pest in any country can be dangerous for the local agricultural produce.

There have been reported incidences of pests contaminating the food stuff which is carried in the shipping containers. The pests that eat foodstuffs are usually not present in large numbers to be noticed by crews. Few pests left behind while unloading continue to breed and multiply in cargo unless eradicated. The combination of a residual pest population and food debris in un-cleaned cracks and crevices leads to the large numbers of pests that attack and spoil subsequent cargoes. Each year, pests cause losses that vary from 5-10% of the value of the original crops. Few insects even seriously reduce the nutritive value of a large quantity of material. Such pest infestation can also trigger a complex heating process that spreads throughout the pile and causes losses more serious than those resulting from the insects themselves. Also the foodstuffs with even mild infestation need to be dis- carded since the food products reaching the consumer should be free of insect material in any case.

Let us look at some incidences pertaining to the damage caused by pest migration to a foreign country through these shipping containers.

A floating threat: Sea containers spread pests and diseases
17 August 2016, Rome

International Plant Protection Convention grapples with challenges of globalized trade. It was an exotic fungus that wiped out billions of American chestnut trees in the early 20th century, dramatically altering the landscape and ecosystem, while today the emerald ash borer – another pest that hitch-hiked along global trade routes to new habitats – threatens to do the same with a valuable tree long used by humans to make tool handles, guitars and office furniture.

Also as per the Food and Agricultural Organization of UN,the biggest “biological spill” of all was when a fungus-like eukaryotic microorganism called Phytophthora infestans – the name of the genus comes from Greek for “plant destroyer” – sailed from the Americas to Belgium. Within months it arrived in Ireland, it triggered a potato blight that led to famine, death and mass migration. Also a relative of the toxic cane toad that has run rampant in Australia recently disembarked from a container carrying freight to Madagascar, a biodiversity hotspot, and the ability of females to lay up to 40,000 eggs a year has made it a catastrophic threat for local lemurs and birds while also threatening the habitat of a host of animals and plants. In Rome, municipal authorities have been ramping up their annual campaign against the tiger mosquito, an invasive species that has arrived by ship in Albania in the 1970s. Aedes albopictus, famous for its aggressive biting, is now prolific across Italy.

Shipping containers: Importing insect pests, too…
By Faith Campbell, September 22, 2014, USA

Several of the most damaging tree-killing insects came to America as larvae riding in crates, pallets, or other forms of wood packaging material.

These include the Asian long horned beetle (ALB), emerald ash borer, and red bay ambrosia beetle. All entered the country since trade opened with China in the late 1980s.

So is there a reliable and effective solution for the pest nuisance in the shipping containers? We have a solution for this problem. At C Tech Corporation we make use of Mother Nature’s gift of senses to these  insects in developing non- toxic & non- hazardous formulation! Termirepel™ paint and additives is the solution. Termirepel™ paint can be directly applied to the containers which need protection from pest infestation. It is easy to apply and does not affect the aesthetics of the application which needs protection. Termirepel™ polymer additives can be incorporated into the base polymer while manufacturing the containers. It works on the mechanism of repellence by affecting the olfactory senses of the pests. The product is RoHS, RoHS 2 and REACH compliant and FIFRA exempted.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grasshopper nuisance!

Grasshoppers are insects of the suborder Caelifera within the order Orthoptera, which includes crickets and katydids. They are sometimes referred to as short-horned grasshoppers to distinguish them from the katydids, which have much longer antennae. They are probably the oldest living group of chewing herbivorous insects, dating back to the early Triassic around 250 million years ago. Grasshoppers are typically ground-dwelling insects with powerful hind legs which enable them to escape from threats by leaping vigorously. They are hemimetabolous insects i.e they do not undergo complete metamorphosis, and hatch from an egg into a nymph or “hopper” which undergoes five moults, becoming more similar to the adult insect at each developmental stage. At high population densities and under certain environmental conditions, some grasshopper species can change colour and behaviour and form swarms. Under these circumstances they are known as locusts.

Grasshoppers are voracious feeders, consuming approximately one-half of their body weight per day. Both adults and nymphs cause damage by chewing on the leaves and stems of plants, and if infestations are severe, may defoliate entire fields. It is estimated that grasshoppers consume up to 25 percent of the available forage in the western United States annually.

The injurious species of grasshoppers are all alike in their cycle of development. Eggs are deposited in late summer in elongated masses or pods inserted in the soil. These pass through the winter, and on hatching in the spring, the young seek food in the immediate area. As they increase in size and food becomes scarce, migration to other food sources takes place. After molting 5 or 6 times, during a period of 40-60 days, the adults appear and continue feeding until cold weather kills them.

Grasshoppers are general feeders on grasses and weeds and often move to cultivated crops. Crop damage is likely to be greatest in years when dry weather accompanies high populations. Drought conditions reduce natural vegetation, forcing grasshoppers to move to cultivated crops. Several species of grasshoppers feed on soybean foliage. The damage that grasshoppers cause appears as round to ragged holes in the leaves. These ragged holes extend in from the leaf margins and between the veins. Grasshoppers may also feed on and damage soybean pods, often chewing through the pod tissue into the seed. This may be a serious problem in dry years.

Mostly grasshoppers prefer young green plants, especially lettuce, beans, corn, carrots, onions, and some annual flowers. Squash and tomatoes are among the vegetables grasshoppers least favor. Grasshoppers have chewing mouthparts that remove large sections of leaves and flowers, sometimes devouring entire plants. Garden damage is usually limited to a few weeks in early summer immediately after range weeds dry up. However, during major outbreaks grasshoppers will feed on almost any green plant, and damage may occur over a considerably longer period.

Let us look at some recent news articles pertaining to the damage caused by the grasshoppers.

Voracious, gregarious locusts
January 31 2017, The Hindu, India

A locust is a grasshopper, which in its swarming phase can devastate thousands of acres of crops — to the extent of putting humans into famine and starvation. History is fraught with its notorious acts.

In solitary phase, locusts are just another grasshopper, with short horns. Taxonomically, there is no difference between a grasshopper or a locust, it is in their behaviour, that they exhibit differences. They are also called acridid and commonly seen in swarms in different parts of the world, on all continents except Antarctica.

They are highly migratory and are classified into ten subspecies. Species such as the Senegalese grasshopper and the African rice grasshopper have been observed to display locust-like behaviour on crowding.

Destructive behaviour

When conditions are right, the harmless solitary locust undergo rapid set of changes. When there is a dramatic vegetation growth followed by drought in an area, the locusts start breed more. The scores of wingless nymphs become swarms of winged adults. They together become gregarious (tending to associate with others of one’s kind and growing in a cluster) and migratory. They fly as thick patch of swarms, devouring the crops on their way. They also cause huge damage. The adults consume most of the green vegetation.

They migrate in millions and cause damage through infestation. They have been a major cause of concern in agriculture that they have formed plagues since prehistory. In 1915, swarms of locusts stripped areas in Palestine and Syria from March to October, putting these places into deep food crisis.

More recently, in 2013, Malagasy migratory locust devastated Madagascar, following a cyclone in February. The nation saw a surge in locust population and soon the insects occupied 50 per cent of it. The authorities changed the situation to plague status.

Swarm of grasshoppers takes over Central Australia
January 24 2017, ABC News, Australia

Swarms of insects have descended upon the Central Australian outback after recent rainfall.

In particular, large amounts of yellow-winged grasshoppers have populated the area, both in Alice Springs and surrounding areas.

Chris Adriaansen, director of the Australian Plague Locust Commission, identified the insect as a grasshopper species.

“They’re not a locust species, they’re a grasshopper species,” he said.

“Yellow-winged grasshoppers are fairly widespread across Australia, and the population rises and falls quite dramatically with weather conditions.

“Given the rainfall that’s been in Central Australia four of five weeks ago the population has just burst forth.”

Mr. Adriaansen said local grasshoppers will be looking to eat vegetation, unlike the Australian plague locusts which feed on grass species and grain crops.

“When they’re in numbers obviously they can create a level of damage,” he said.

Today food scarcity is one of the major issues that the world is facing. About 11.3 % of the world population is hungry. Thus we cannot afford this significant amount of crop damage caused by pests like grasshopper. There is an urgent need of a sustainable solution.

Termirepel™ anti insect additive, a C Tech Corporation product is the best solution for the prevention and control of insect infestations. Termirepel™ masterbatch can be incorporated in agricultural films, mulches, etc. during polymer processing. It can also be incorporated in silage bags and packaging films to protect the crops in post-harvest stage from pest damage.

Termirepel™ lacquer can be added to paints which can then be applied to fencing, tree guards etc. It follows 6 tiered mechanism, which is extremely effective on insects like grasshopper, ants, beetles, termites etc. Termirepel™ is a non-toxic and non-hazardous anti insect additive. It is thermally stable and does not degrade on exposure to heat and sunlight. It does not kill or harm the insect but repels them. It does not volatilize and does not degrade the soil. It is RoHS, RoHS2, REACH compliant and FIFRA exempted.