From the Field: Bayer Mobile University, Cleveland


April 10, 2005

CLEVELAND — When I arrived at Bayer’s Mobile University at the Southern Mill Creek Products of Ohio’s location here, the overflow from the parking lot spilled on to the old brick street.

I perched my car precariously on the street illegally (though I eventually moved it into the parking lot) and climbed the steep stairs to the educational sessions, where Bayer representatives Joe Grippi and Vince Parmanheld the attention of nearly 60 PMPs.

I stood at the back of the room for the first 10 minutes before a gracious Southern Mill Creek employee set up some overflow chairs — and I was on time.

Grippi gave a talk on ant behaviors and treatments, focusing on baiting programs and telling Northern Ohio PMPs that research shows ants prefer protein baits in the summer, carbohydrate baits in the summer and back to proteins before winter to store energy for the winter.

He also discussed carpenter ant behavior in-depth because it’s the most common ant in Cleveland.

“Carpenter ants are wimpy,” Grippi said. “They don’t like competition, so if there are other ants in the area they will leave.”

He suggested PMPs place bait stations near water or near the ant mounds for best control.

Grippi moved seamlessly into a presentation on German cockroaches, reviewing basic biological behaviors and explaining why baits are so effective against them. He said stories of bait aversion shouldn’t discourage PMPs from using baits against German roaches.

“They just get tired of going to Burger King all the time,” Grippi said. “If you rotate the different kinds of baits, you will be less likely to see aversion.”

Then after a short lunch break, Grippi’s partner Parman took the floor to discuss spiders and termite behavior. He said there are only two medically important spiders in the Cleveland area — the brown recluse and black widow spiders.

Parman stressed the importance of integrated management of spiders, including a review of the important spider-tracking tools and treatment options. Then he went through a series of slides about termites, stressing that PMPs must do thorough inspections of all potential termite entry points.

“You should be looking at everything from the moment you drive up,” Parman said. “You need to talk to the homeowner and make use of theirknowledge of their houses to help you do an effective job.”

Parman and Grippi did a gracious job of ignoring one PMP whose cell phone rang four or five times during their presentations — at one point even being so rude as to take the call and talk in a normal voice (much to the consternation of his colleagues).

Then it was out into the bright sun to try Bayer’s new Premise Foam In A Can, on demonstration foundations brought by Bayer’s Mobile University van. Everyone stuck around to take a turn.

Local PMPs like John Lewis of Lewis Exterminating Co. in Cleveland Heights andYvette Hooper of DCS Systems of Ohio from Cleveland, seemed pleased to have the chance to pick up continuing education units (CEUs) so close to home.

Hosts Tom Evans and Carl Hinderer of Southern Mill Creek were all smiles as the PMPs packed up their vehicles and headed back to work.

“We had a great turnout,” Evans said. “We were so pleased to be able to host this kind of educational session — it turned out well.”

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