Green Pest Management (GPM) is an integrated, multi-step approach that works on a different principle than the familiar chemically oriented pest control, which depends totally on the use of chemical applications that are sometimes toxic to people and their surroundings. GPM combines prevention and monitoring techniques with a prudent approach to pesticides (using products like Boracare) to render a more responsible, yet highly effective solution.
The Five Steps of Green Pest Management
1. Inspection. This is a critical first step that, when performed correctly and with diligence, can get your GPM program on track. In this phase, your Pest Management Professional will assess your home's risk of infestation. The PMP will identify any existing pests and note cracks, crevices and other points of entry into your home. He will uncover potential food sources, the presence of water sources, and look for signs of existing pest activity. From this your PMP will develop a prevention plan that can drastically reduce your home’s susceptibility to invasion.
2. Removal of food and harborage. In a chemically oriented approach to pest control, all other steps to discourage and control infestations are ignored in favor of introducing large amounts of pesticides into the environment. In an effective GPM program, however, pests are first discouraged by creating an environment unsuitable for them. This means removing food and water supply sources (including leaky pipes), compost sites, general yard debris, accessible pet food, garbage and other food sources.
3. Exclusion. During the inspection process, your Pest Management Professional will identify specific areas of vulnerability to pest invasion and create a customized plan for controlling and eliminating any problems without introducing unnecessary chemicals and hazards. Your PMP will maintain a vigilant effort to remove or seal points of entry into your home and keep them sealed. He will help you identify situations such as high moisture areas, overhanging branches or debris piles – which could attract pests or provide pathways into your home. This ongoing service has a major impact on keeping your home from becoming an attractive living site for insects, termites and other pests.
4. Judicious usage of pesticides. Even after a thorough assessment of conditions, development of a management plan and creation of a “pest proofing” program, there may be the need to eliminate an existing infestation. Because in GPM, pesticide product application is just one part of an effective multi-faceted program, it can be performed with restraint and focus. This means only those pesticides necessary to address your specific problem will be used and only in the locations and quantities necessary. And as much as possible, these products will be specially selected for lower toxicity to people, pets, nontarget pests and the environment in general.
5. Monitoring. The final part of GPM is an ongoing monitoring program to ensure that your home maintains conditions that discourage pests and to identify the presence of pests before they become full-blown infestations.