Over the last several years there has been an increased desire by many people in the Tennessee Valley to avoid using chemicals and use more natural and organic products. At Scout Pest Control we strive to use the most effective and safest products available. With our traditional Pest Control Service we use many natural products, particularly dusts and baits, along with traditional products. With our Organic Pest Control Service we use natural products, like Diatomaceous Earth, Silica Gel, Boric Acid, Pyrethrins (not pyrethroids), Limonene (Made from Orange Peel), Rosemary Oil, Geraniol, Peppermint Oil, Thyme Oil, Lemon grass Oil, other Essential Oils and other natural products. There is even a new product that we use for Bed Bug control made of Soy. We also use pheromone traps, sticky traps, and certain growth regulators.
Today’s post will cover Boric Acid. While Boric Acid isn’t organic (no carbon), it is natural, long-lasting, and pests don’t seem to be able to develop resistance to it unlike modern products. Boric Acid is tried and true, its been around for a long time and while slower than modern insecticides it works very well. Boric Acid is an approved product to be used in organic facilities and homes with the restriction that it isn’t to be used in direct contact with food or soils.
Boric Acid is used in many pest control products, and is considered to be a natural form of pest control. We use it in our Organic Pest Control Service Program because it is a natural product, and very low in toxicity. Scientists have yet to determine exactly how boric acid works on pests, but it works well to control cockroaches, ants, fleas (in the larva stage), silverfish, crickets, and other pests. While we’re not sure the exact all the ways it works, one of the ways it works is by eliminating the ability of insects to digest food.
Boric Acid has a very long residual, being a natural compound it doesn’t really “go bad.” That’s not to say it lasts forever. It is often formulated as the active ingredient in a bait, and once the bait ages and spoils it is no longer attractive to pests. When applied as a dust, over time, Boric Acid will pull moisture from the air and clump making it ineffective.
More good news about Boric Acid is that it has a very low toxicity to mammals. This makes it an ideal product for use in both residential and commercial pest control. Another advantage of using Boric Acid over other products is that pests like cockroaches haven’t and most likely won’t develop resistance to this product. One of the problems we are facing today is that pests are developing a resistance to commonly used products. This is particularly true with pests that reproduce quickly, like german roaches, bed bugs, fleas, and others. It’s comforting to know that by choosing to use boric acid and other natural products we not only control current pest populations, we also don’t contribute to resistant “Super Bugs” that can plague us down the road.
Unfortunately there is no such thing as one perfect product. Some of the downsides to Boric Acid are: it is slow acting. It can take one to two weeks to take effect. Also Boric Acid works by ingestion. Pests either ingest it as part of a bait, or when they groom themselves. This means that it isn’t effective against pests like spiders, bed bugs, and adult fleas which don’t accept bait or groom themselves. Last, while it is low in toxicity (roughly half the toxicity of table salt) it can be toxic in higher doses.
Overall Boric Acid is a good choice for control of pests. It has a low toxicity, and is very effective at controlling pests. If you live in the Athens, Madison, or Huntsville Alabama area and are interested in a natural or organic pest control service, check out our website at www.scoutpestcontrol.com or give us a call at 256-216-1088!