Ants, Termites, Bed Bugs and Squirrels Are No Match for Dan Flagg

Apr 16, 2018
Supplied photo When you see one of these critters, you can bet there are thousands more nearby. Termites are extremely destructive to homes.

During the past 20 years, Dan Flagg has seen a lot of pesky insects and mammals. But there once was a time he almost couldn’t believe what he was seeing.

“We had a roach job once that was absolutely insane,” said Flagg, owners of Flagg’s Termite and Pest Control, which serves much of southern New Jersey, including Southern Ocean County. “I’m talking hundreds of thousands of roaches. They were everywhere, and it took us awhile to get rid of them. We were laying glue boards and using vacuums all over the house. It was gross.”

Fortunately, roaches aren’t often the biggest nuisance for which he gets called to Long Beach Island and nearby mainland towns.

“On the Island, I get a lot of calls for ants and squirrels, believe it or not,” said Flagg, who owns a home in the Beach Haven West section of Stafford Township and spends a lot of time here during the warmer-weather months. “Everyone gets ants, it seems. The sandy soil makes it easier for them to move along and get into your home. And I don’t even know where all the squirrels come from. Maybe they hike across the Causeway or something. On the mainland, we see more bed bugs, termites and carpenter bees.”

Whichever the pest, Flagg has a solution. He and his crew of three technicians deal in all kinds of flying and crawling critters – from spiders to hornets, millipedes to crickets, mice to raccoons, and all sorts of others. Flagg specializes in elimination of pests and preventive measures to keep them away.

“When it comes to pests, nothing’s ever easy. Raccoons are tough because they’re smart and wreak all kinds of havoc, and people are generally scared of them,” Flagg said. “But skunks aren’t much easier, and groundhogs are very aggressive and difficult to deal with.

“Of the insects, carpenter ants are probably the easiest to remove. They’re big and easy to see, and if you wait until dawn they literally will show you where their nest is. The toughest insect? Bed bugs, for sure. Those things just get everywhere. I’ve sprayed lots of houses, some with as many 10,000 bed bugs. They travel with people, so a lot of rental homes get them, and they’re very hard to get rid of. Removing bed bugs is very costly and labor intensive.”

Despite many consumer-grade pest-killing products on the market, he recommends not trying to take on hordes of them.

“To truly, effectively remove large amounts of bugs and pests, you have to know what you’re doing,” said Flagg, whose services can be tailored for office buildings, apartments, condominiums, restaurants, medical facilities and hotels, as well as single-family homes. “If you don’t do it right the first time, there’s a good chance you’re going to pay a lot more in the long run, either for damages done by pests or the amount of time and effort it takes to get rid of them. It’s always best to bring in an expert immediately upon finding them.”

And with spring weather soon taking shape throughout the region, home and business owners need to be on the lookout.

“May is a busy month for any insect,” Flagg said. “And when it stays colder longer into the spring, they really come out in force once the weather warms up. Once the summer comes, carpenter bees and ants are really busy.”

As are most insects of the flying, stinging variety. Flagg said that when you see big, papery nests hanging from tree limbs or attached to other structures – keep an eye on spots underneath second-floor decks and overhangs – don’t go near them, and certainly don’t allow children to poke them with sticks.

“Bald-faced hornets and wasps are nasty,” he said. “Definitely don’t make a piñata out of one of their nests, or you’re going to have a problem.”

Another warning Flagg has is not to keep piles of dry wood on the ground along the perimeter of your home – it may become a haven for termites, which then will make themselves comfortable behind the walls of your house as well.

“Make sure your downspouts are clean and the water flows away from the house,” he said. “If you use mulch, use treated mulch and not the stuff many towns offer after cutting down dead trees. A lot of those trees were probably infested with termites, and their eggs might be in that wood. And a lot of people use chimeneas and fire pits at the shore, and the best advice I have is to not keep wood up against the house.”

Of course, if your home or business may have an issue with a particular kind of pest, Flagg is available most of the time day or night. His service is certified in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware, and many of his regular clients are free to call him late at night for serious problems. He also gives a 20 percent discount on services to seniors and veterans.

“I’ve been doing this for 20 years, and I love what I do,” he said. “I’m all for helping people the best way I know how, and many of my customers are people I’ve known for years. And that’s what I love most about what I do, developing relationships with people. I get to know them, their kids, their dogs. They’re like family to me, and they know that if they have a problem at 11 at night, they can call me and I’ll be there for them.”

To learn more about Flagg’s Termite and Pest Control, visit flaggspestcontrol.com, find it on Facebook at facebook.com/flaggspestcontrol, or call 609-871-5096.

David Biggy

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