Pulse baiting is a term and concept that will become increasingly more important in rodent control. Pulse baiting is the use of a non-toxic monitoring bait to first identify how much activity is occurring at an account. Once activity is confirmed, the monitoring bait is switched out for an active bait. In rodent control, pulse baiting refers to taking the “pulse” of the account, since technicians will not face the same amount of rodent pressure throughout the lifetime of an account. As more and more companies implement Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programs, it is important to keep in mind that you can’t have a successful IPM program without pulse baiting.
DETEX®, Bell’s non-toxic rodent monitoring bait, is one tool that Pest Management Professionals (PMPs) must have in their toolbox. Using a monitoring bait such as DETEX in an IPM program essentially takes the “pulse” of the rodent activity at the account. DETEX becomes the information gathering tool—providing PMPs with crucial information about where the rodents are traveling, where they’re coming from, and the severity of the infestation. From this information, the PMP will be able to develop a decisive plan for where to install traps and additional bait stations. This information will also help in selecting the proper active bait to use. Consider using DETEX in rotation with an active bait as part of any rodent baiting program. By doing so, any PMP will be able to understand activity at the site by monitoring and tracking any new issues. In addition to acting as an information gathering tool, monitoring using DETEX also has the benefit of allowing rodents to accept the bait station as a trusted and safe environment. Due to the activity, the station will accumulate the scent of rodent feces, urine, and pheromones. Pulse baiting is a tool that can help PMPs overcome customers who may not be comfortable using a rodenticide at their home or place of business before it is proven necessary.
When selecting which bait to include in your active bait rotation, Bell recommends beginning with an acute rodenticide, such as FASTRAC® soft bait. FASTRAC is Bell’s premium acute soft bait rodenticide, and requires less bait than anticoagulants to get the job done. We refer to this as the “knock-down” phase of the pulse baiting process—taking advantage of the rodents’ accumulated trust for the bait station as a reliable feeding ground. CONTRAC® or FINAL® can be used as an alternative to FASTRAC, when PMPs or accounts are used to baiting with second generation anticoagulants. This can be particularly effective in situations where rodent-bait shyness, palatability, or account preferences are concerns.
The use of iQ products in conjunction with pulse baiting is one tactic PMPs should consider implementing. Increasing regulatory pressure on the use of rodenticides makes it critical for pest management professionals (PMPs) to ensure that their knowledge of rodent activity is verifiable. The use of Bell’s Express iQ tray, Weighted Landscape iQ tray, Pulse Rat iQ station, or Pulse Mouse iQ station will help you find out when, where, and why rodents are traveling. This gives PMPs proof of which bait stations have rodent activity. When rodent activity is proven via Bell Sensing App, swap out the non-toxic monitor for an active bait. PMPs can then use this information to provide a targeted rodenticide approach for their customers. Having this knowledge of when and where rodents are traveling also allows PMPs to use snap traps in bait stations with verified activity, know where exclusion efforts will be most effective, and know when active bait rotation is necessary.
Once rodents have consumed the active bait and your account is at the agreed upon activity threshold, you now have the ability to bolster your program by implementing the next non-toxic monitoring step of the process, this will allow you to maintain your rodent activity baseline using trend analysis. It is our belief that future rodent control technology will soon make pulse baiting the industry standard.
Header image: Bell Laboratories
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