Food sources are literally under attack around the world. Mysteriously burning crop fields, processing factories, and several thousands of livestock dead. Theories of causation aside, the reality is that systems of sustenance are being eradicated, and nourishment as we’ve known it, is rapidly speeding toward an evitable decline. As we busy ourselves preparing our families with provisions necessary to address shelter, hunger, and thirst, we must also plan for environmental conditions that will result from prophesied famine.
The coming food shortage and economic crash will impact everyone and everything, including pests. As food sources continue to dry up, pests will go hunting for alternative nourishment. Desperate to survive, our kitchens, pantries, and gardens will be targeted by mice, rats, snakes, raccoons and more. It is imperative that will plan for this reality, and set up systems and solutions to thwart this pesky threat. Below I’ve shared a handful of suggestions and tips to get you started. Lord willing, more on what I do to prepare my lord’s house will be forthcoming.
- Clear your property of piles of material, debris and standing water – Like humans, pests need shelter, food and water. By removing mounds of organic matter, trash, and water sources from your property, you make it less attractive to pests. Examples of organic matter include piles of sticks, leaves, or anything pest can build a nest in. You should be able to see clear to the ground throughout your property.
- Keep grass and foliage low, or eliminate completely – Keep grass low by mowing, or remove completely by smothering grass with landscape cloth or tarps, and covering the area with wood chips or gravel. Electric or gas propelled mowers may not be an option in the future, which could lead to a yard overrun with foliage. I especially like this option because it maintains the soil beneath the protective layer for future gardening!
- Seal up any entry points – Walk around your entire property and look for points of entry and seal. Call out a professional if necessary. Be sure to secure any spaces around appliance and pipe outlets, where rodents and other pests are known to enter.
- Set rodent traps and store traps for future use – Even if you have never had a rodent problem, the likelihood that you will is sure to increase. Prepare your property by setting rodent traps around the permitter, as well as inside areas holding food sources. I recently set up traps throughout the kitchen behind all appliances and standing cabinets, as well as our pantry area. Be sure to purchase a good amount of traps, pest attractants, and any materials necessary to capture and safely remove/dispose of pests.
- Organize your pantry with pests in mind – I recently reorganized our pantry, moving all impenetrable items to the floor, and all other items up high and to the front to be easily seen. Much of your long-term pantry items should be kept in sealed containers, but there are somethings that we all may still shelve. In this case, put all impenetrable items such as cans, sealed glass jars, and sealed containers lower, and penetrable items like boxed pasta, bagged rice etc., higher. I also sprinkle pest poison on the tops of my sealed containers to deter pests from trying to bite through the plastic. I have seen rodents bite through even very thick plastic, so my hope is they will go for what they think is free food, and leave our bounty alone. Eventually they will die and decompose without causing an aggressive stench. I use the TomCat brand, which is safe if accidently ingested by children or pets. I simply crumble it up and sprinkle around.
- Regularly check property for any signs of pest activity – I grew up being taught to stay ready, to avoid the need to get ready. In that same spirit, I routinely check my lord’s property for any signs of pest activity. The sooner you catch it, the sooner you can get it under control. You may also find that a rodent was caught in one of your traps. You will want to remove any dead rodents as quickly as possible. If I find anything, I notify my husband, because JuJu is certainly not built for that!
- Spray or place scents around and inside of home that pests hate – many pests hate certain scents including peppermint, cinnamon, cayenne, and ammonia. Strategically place now to keep pest from wanting to enter.
- Invest in locks or enclosures for garbage cans and compost bins – Trash and compost bins will easily attract pests. Address this by purchasing locking cans enclosures. I’m brainstorming a DIY solutions now and will share LW I come up with something!
These are a handful of tips I hope motivates you to start planning for pest prevention. We won’t be able to call Orkin when it truly hits the fan.