In the warmer months of the year, homeowners witness a lot of pests. Pests become especially prevalent when food is around in those higher temperatures, such as when you host a barbecue. Unwanted guests can make friends and family squirm and possibly ruin dishes you put time and effort into. Consider these tips to keep pests away from your barbecue.
Common pests found at a barbecue
There are a few pests that are more likely to show up than others. These include yellow jackets, fruit and house flies, mosquitoes and ants, Pestworld.org noted. Aside from annoying you and your guests, some of these pests can actually endanger you. Yellow jackets may sting people if they feel threatened, such as if a person decides to swat at them. They may even sting repeatedly and cause an allergic reaction that will require a trip to the emergency room. Mosquitoes can carry dangerous diseases such as West Nile virus and dengue fever. Flies have been known to carry many different diseases and spread ones such as E.coli. Ants can quickly contaminate your food if they access it, causing guests to be grossed out by what you're serving up.
Pest control tips
Follow these suggestions to try to steer pests away from your backyard cookout.
Pest lamps: Many hardware stores carry pest lamps that draw different types of insects in and then zap them, Reader's Digest stated. In the past, these zappers weren't very aesthetically pleasing, and you could hear the insects getting zapped. These days, many zappers look like a regular backyard lamp and the sound is much quieter, preventing you and your guests from being disturbed.
Tiki torches and candles: If you don't have any zappers lying around, light a few tiki torches or citronella candles, which can repel many different insects from coming too close.
Don't leave food out: After everyone is finished eating, be sure to throw out all plates, cups and utensils or bring them inside for cleaning if they're not disposable. Leaving these items outside can draw in plenty of pests, especially if the food has a sweet fragrance.
Use strainers: If you're having a sizable barbecue where food will be out for a while, use a few strainers for food. Place the colander over plates of food, which will repel pests and keep food accessible to guests.
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