Posted on March 4, 2014 by ccsipm
I learned more about head lice yesterday from Dr. Richard Pollack from the Harvard School of Public Health. He discussed several myths about head lice. None of these is true:
- The presence of head lice is a sign of neglect.
- Head lice are shared readily and cause epidemics.
- Head lice can cause disease and/or harm by transmitting pathogens.
- Head lice can jump, fly, or survive for weeks off a host.
Be sure it’s really a head louse.
Dr. Pollack emphasized how important diagnosis is. You must first find the creature. Next, confirm it is a louse. There are many other things that may look like head lice, including knots in the hair, dandruff, and other creatures, such as book lice or carpet beetles. Finally, determine it is alive. Recent research has found that head lice can only survive off a host for a few hours; it has commonly been published that head lice can survive 1 to 2 weeks off a host.
People infested with head lice pose negligible risk to themselves or to anyone else. He believes that schools unnecessarily quarantine infested children and recommends that schools eliminate their exclusion policies – for both nits and lice.
Filed under: insects, public health | Tagged: bite, bug, health | Leave a comment »
Posted on February 24, 2014 by ccsipm
If you have allergies this time of year, it might be from dust allergens in your bedroom. Dust allergens are substances found in dust — fabric fibers, lint, feathers, stuffing materials, dander from dogs and cats, bacteria, mold, food particles, plants, and insects. Many sources recommend that allergies are caused by dust mites — but not in Colorado!
Dr. Nelson of National Jewish Hospital in Denver did a survey of house dust mites in Colorado several years ago. He found none, with one exception. The exception was an invalid, confined to bed with a humidifier running constantly next to the bed. He concluded that they are not a problem in the state.
Despite this, articles about house dust mites continue to periodically crop up in local newspaper stories. They also are sometimes used in advertisements to create concerns so that people will buy products. One example is companies that clean heating ducts and picture a big house dust mite in advertisements.
I can think of fewer places that would be more unfavorable for a house dust mite to live than in a Colorado heating duct.
13 species of mites have been found in house dust — but not in Colorado
To decrease the amount of allergens in your home:
- Encase pillows, mattresses and box springs in allergen-proof materials to limit mite exposure.
- Wash sheets at least once a week in hot water.
- Wash blankets regularly.
- Remove carpeting and upholstered furniture.
- Keep pets off the bed and out of the bedroom.
For more information about health and wellness in homes, click here.
Filed under: environment, public health, Uncategorized | Tagged: asthma | Leave a comment »
Posted on February 17, 2014 by ccsipm
The number one pest in homes and schools this time of year is the house mouse. If you see just one mouse or evidence of droppings, it’s time to set traps, improve sanitation, and mouse-proof the building. Because a mouse can squeeze through a hole the size of your little finger, the first line of defense is sealing up entry holes.
Traps are your second line of defense. There are lots of styles to choose from – wooden traps or plastic ones. Mice are nocturnal and stay away from humans. They’re quiet, fast and can hide just about anywhere. Three good places to set traps are kitchens, basements and attics, and garage or storage areas.
When non-chemical measures are inadequate, rodenticides should be used very carefully. Children are particularly at risk because these products are placed on floors, where children can find them (and sometimes eat them). More than half of all reported poisonings occur in children under the age of six. Consider using only those products that meet EPA’s risk reduction standards. Always read and follow the label.
EPA has new rules on how rodenticides can be used. Previously, poison baits were available in both block and pellet form. EPA is requiring that all rodenticide bait products available for sale to consumers be sold only with bait stations. In schools, for example, bait-block formulations can be placed on rods in tamper-resistant bait stations that are secured, such as attaching them to permanent masonry or 40-pound concrete blocks. Loose bait such as pellets is prohibited.
For more information on the house mouse, click here.
Filed under: animals, environment, public health, Uncategorized | Tagged: asthma, health, pesticide | Leave a comment »
Posted on February 13, 2014 by ccsipm
The University of California IPM YouTube Channel has some great videos – and most are less than 2 minutes long. You can learn how to catch a spider, how to inspect for ants, or how to inspect for bed bugs. Check it out at http://www.youtube.com/user/UCIPM/videos.
To learn more about spiders found in homes and buildings, click here.
Filed under: arthropods, insects, Uncategorized | Tagged: bite, bug | Leave a comment »
Posted on February 11, 2014 by ccsipm
To see what’s happening with Colorado School IPM, please check out our February newsletter. This month’s newsletter showcases the Colorado Coalition’s approved School IPM policy template, provides information about IPM and cockroaches, how to use sticky traps effectively, and tips for effective spring cleaning. Other exciting news for Colorado School IPM includes:
SAVE THE DATE – IPM FOR SCHOOL GROUNDS – APRIL 21, 2014
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Posted on February 11, 2014 by ccsipm
The Colorado Coalition for School IPM (CCSIPM) met for their quarterly meeting on January 27, 2014. At this meeting, the Coalition members reviewed and approved a policy template for school IPM.
This document addresses the “Why” of IPM and presents key areas of IPM in administrative language that is easily customizable to accommodate your school district’s format.
IPM areas that were addressed include a general preface and explanation of IPM, IPM objectives, transition time needed to fully implement IPM, key components of IPM, and pesticide use.
The template offers each school district a menu of IPM elements and from that menu, school districts are able to select the elements that best address their needs. To obtain a copy of the template, click here.
If you’d like to know more about the template and how it was developed, contact: Genevieve.Berry@colostate.edu.
Several members of the Coalition have offered to put together a step-by-step guide on how to successfully implement IPM into schools.
Pest management action plans for schools are also available on the national Extension website.
Filed under: school, Uncategorized | 1 Comment »
Posted on February 6, 2014 by ccsipm
The U. S. Forest Service and the Colorado State Forest Service do an aerial survey every year to look at forest health. This year (and last year), the mountain pine beetle epidemic slowed, with the lowest acreage of active infestation observed in 15 years. Statewide, mountain pine beetle was active on 97,000 acres in 2013. This brings the total infestation to 3.4 million acres in Colorado since the first signs of the outbreak in 1996.
The spruce beetle outbreak was active on 398,000 acres across the state, expanding by 216,000 new acres in 2013, compared to 183,000 new acres in 2012. The total area affected by this beetle since 1996 has reached more than 1.1 million acres.
Conversely, aspen forest conditions in the state have continued to improve. The aerial survey indicates that although there is continued mortality following drought in the early 2000s, the decline has slowed, with only 1,200 acres impacted in 2013.
For information to help manage for healthier forests, visit the website.
Filed under: environment, insects, Uncategorized | Leave a comment »