August 2014 






Sign Up Today and Secure Your Space for the Annual
SPMAO Golf Tournament! 

As a member of SPMAO I would like to extend a special invitation to you to attend our exclusive golf tournament at the Tangle Creek Club on September 11.

Spaces are limited so I strongly encourage you to click here to register today and secure your space for this exciting event. The $125 registration fee includes power cart with GPS capabilities, green fees, valet bag drop, practice range balls, and a BBQ lunch and dinner. The tournament starts at 10 a.m. sharp and we'll be announcing the winners at dinner following the tournament.

This is a great opportunity to unwind with your fellow SPMAO colleagues and members following a busy pest management season. For more information and a complete description of the tournament, click here. I hope to see you at Tangle Creek for another enjoyable year of the SPMAO golf tournament.

Best Wishes,

Sandy Costa
SPMAO President


NPMA Technical Update on Bats   


Bats make up a diverse group of mammals that are found in almost every conceivable environment in the world. It may seem hard to believe, but bats are the second-largest group of mammals by the number of species with over 1,200 found worldwide; 40 of those in North America! Bats are highly varied in both appearance; the smallest bats on earth are just over one inch long, while the largest weigh 4 pounds and have wingspans of nearly 6 feet! Bats hold a special place in their ecosystem and are incredibly important in limiting the populations of mosquitoes and other annoying insects. At night, bats emerge from their roosts and descend upon their environment, using a highly complex prey-locating system called echolocation to find insects in the dark. The amount of mosquitoes and insects consumed by bats can be astounding, and these creatures truly are a net benefit to humans.    


Bats can penetrate a structure using a gap less than 1/2" in width, and often use attics as a roost. During the spring, summer, and fall, mature bats leave their roosts nightly to hunt for food. However, as winter approaches, most species of bats leave their roosts in homes to either migrate or hibernate in caves, mines, or even on cliff faces. Once bats have left for the winter, you can swoop in and seal up entry points, install special material to prevent re-infestation, and clean up the newly abandoned roosts. Make sure to read and follow local and provincial regulations when dealing with bats, and do not exclude adult bats when pups are present in a structure.


Bat infestations can pose risk to humans. Bats can carry rabies, a very serious viral infection that is life-threatening without proper treatment, but it is believed that less than 1% of bats are infected. Rabies-infected bats are more likely to be found during daylight, as they are often disoriented and unable to fly. To be safe, bats should never be approached or handled. If you were bitten by a bat, or suspect you may have been, seek out a public health professional.


Over the last ten years, bed bugs have been making there way all over the country. Well, it turns out that even bats aren't immune! Bed bugs and there close relative bat bugs, are often found in close association with bat roosts. If a group of bats is evicted from a structure, it is possible that bed and bat bugs will be left behind and begin to explore the house in search of blood. These so-called 'secondary infestations' are unpleasant at best, confounding and potential traumatic for homeowners at worst.   


Even bat waste, or guano, can be problematic inside structures. The more serious issue is that guano can harbor a potentially fatal fungus that can cause histoplasmosis. When fungus-containing guano particles dry out, they can become airborne and inhaled. It is important to wear proper PPE and follow proper clean-up protocol after bats have been evicted. In addition to being dangerous, guano and urine can leave a foul-smelling odor and can even penetrate and stain some surfaces. The other issue with guano is that there are several insects, most notably flies and cockroaches, that use it as a food source and can thrive as long as the bats are present.


Important Hotel Information for PestWorld 2014  

The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort is completely sold out. NPMA has made additional rooming arrangements with the Sheraton Lake Buena Vista Resort. Click here to make reservations at the Sheraton. Please note, this hotel is not within walking distance of the event.

Click here for more PestWorld details and registration.


Last Chance to Submit Your Nominations for NPMA Awards 
Submission deadline extended to August 29!

There are only a few days left to submit your nominations for the NPMA Women of Excellence Award and the NPMA Young Entrepreneur Award! Click here to learn more about the NPMA Women of Excellence Award and here to learn more about the NPMA Young Entrepreneur Award.


Save the Date for the 2015 SPMAO Annual Conference  

Save the date! The 2015 SPMAO Annual Conference will be held on January 21-22, 2015 at the Hilton Garden Inn Vaughan. Stay tuned for more details.

Click here to view presentations from the 2014 Annual Conference. 


Lyme Disease Screening Continues Despite Low Odds 

Muskoka Roegion, August 1, 2014  


Despite a recent warning to protect against Lyme disease, the health unit says the odds of having the disease are low in Muskoka. Read more... 


Mass of Venomous Caterpillars Found in Windsor Yard

CBC News, August 1, 2014


A woman living just south of Windsor has found a cluster of venomous caterpillars hanging on an apple tree in her backyard. Caterpillars are hickory tussock moths, which can cause irritation if touched. Read more...