INTEGRATED PEST MANAGEMENT (IPM)
Integrated Pest Management, or IPM, is an effective and environmentally sensitive approach to pest management that relies on a combination of common-sense practices. IPM programs use current, comprehensive information on the life cycles of pests and their interaction with the environment. This information, in combination with available pest control methods, is used to manage pest damage by the most economical means, and with the least possible hazard to people, property, and the environment.
The IPM approach can be applied to both agricultural and non-agricultural settings, such as the home, garden, and workplace. IPM takes advantage of all appropriate pest management options including, but not limited to, the judicious application of pesticides. However, IPM means managing pest problems using the most effective, least-risk options available. Therefore, the arbitrary and routine application of pesticides to crops, buildings or landscapes to manage pests, regardless of need, is NOT IPM. Pesticide application is always the last resort in a true IPM program.
Common IPM Practices
INSPECTION & MONITORING
Routine examination of structures and landscaping to accurately diagnose pest problems and their sources.
Example: Placing monitoring devices such as sticky (glue) traps help determine the presence of pests, level of infestation, and direction of travel.
SANITATION & ORGANIZATION
Keeping a clean, clutter free environment is essential for effective pest management and allows for complete and thorough inspection and monitoring.
Example: Increasing cleaning schedules, storing trash in heavy duty cans with tight fitting lids, keeping stored food in tightly sealed containers, and keeping areas organized / clutter-free will discourage pests.
PEST PROOFING / EXCLUSION
Structural deficiencies and other potential entry points for pests are identified and corrected.
Example: Sealing off potential pest entry points, such as gaps around plumbing and electrical penetrations, will keep pests out long-term. Proper pest exclusion materials are caulking, cement, copper mesh, steel wool fabric, door sweeps, and sheet metal.
COMMUNICATION & COOPERATION
Proper communication and mutual cooperation is a must because long-term, sustainable results cannot be achieved through the application of pesticides alone.
Example: Educating tenants, staff, and homeowners about how to avoid conditions conducive to pests, understanding the risks associated with unauthorized & Do-It-Yourself pesticide use, and reporting pest sightings promptly to your pest management professional is how it's done.
Documenting pest complaints, inspection and monitoring results, pesticide applications, and recommendations allows for effective tracing and accountability.
TARGETED APPLICATION OF LOW-RISK PESTICIDES
Non-chemical methods (inspection, monitoring, sanitation, pest-proofing/exclusion, communication) are the first choices for defense. If pesticide use is deemed necessary by your pest management professional, products with low-toxicity, such as dry baits, and pesticide gels / dusts are applied in ways that greatly limit the potential for exposure to humans and pets.
Is IPM Organic?
When necessary, IPM allows the use of pesticides and other materials made from synthetic materials. Organic pesticides are made from natural materials, but that does not mean they are safer. Pesticides used in organic programs can also have harmful effects on humans, animals and the environment, and must be used carefully and only when needed.
How Does Paramount Use IPM?
The core principles of IPM are included in our Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) manual, and strictly followed by our technicians to ensure that we take advantage of all pest management options to help our clients. This means that our pest management specialists are trained to look for the root causes of pest problems and first develop non-chemical control strategies, rather than simply “spraying and praying” like robots every time we come to your home.
Implementing a custom tailored IPM Program for our customers allows us to reduce, and in some cases, eliminate the application of pesticides altogether. Through our knowledge of pest biology and structural environments, along with recommendations, education, dialogue, and repeated monitoring, we offer a smarter and safer approach to pest management.