Starting early last summer we had thrips starting to appear mainly around our kitchen sink. We sprayed the exterior area outside the kitchen window where we have various shrubs planted but the infestation appearance inside continued. We live in Eastern Washington state and as the weather got colder they disappeared but now with temperatures getting into the 40+ range they are once again appearing. I have read your article on THRIP CONTROL and wonder if you have available a fogger that I could use in the crawl space since I assume that is where they are coming from. Any help or advice would be appreciated.
We do have some FOGGERS you can use in your crawl space but I’m not sure this will resolve the problem. There are just too many “other” possible nest sites commonly found in and around the home which could be related to the problem. Failing to treat these sites would mean your crawl space treatments would be in vain and could cost a lot of money that in the end would be wasted. Before you proceed, I suggest you consider one (or more) of these other possible nest sites.
1) Thrips like to live on and around plants. Do you have any potted plants in the home which could be harboring good soil that thrips would like to use for nesting? This is a very common problem that “surfaces” inside homes toward the end of winter.
2) Thrips like moisture. As explained in our THRIP CONTROL ARTICLE, they generally reside in the top soil so the area immediately around the home is more likely where they are still living and not the crawl space. You said it’s been rainy and I’m guessing there is some prime real estate around your house which they would love. What leads you to believe they are in the crawl space and not out in the dirt and mulch directly adjacent to your house? And when did you last treat this area? Remember, pest control needs to be done on a regular basis since the products available today are shore lived and for the most part don’t provide any good solid long term control.
3) If you are quite sure they are in the crawl space, then treating it only makes sense. But as I stated above, foggers are far from a “good” way to treat such a hostile environment. In the Thrip Control article we mention DELTAMETHRIN DUST for use on non-edible plants. This same dust is quite effective on most any invasive pest and when applied to crawl spaces and attics can last many months. Foggers will only last hours; days at most. If in fact the thrips are nesting in your crawl space, applying something like the Deltamethrin would be the better investment of time and effort. In fact, the treatment would most likely last now through most of this year (unless your crawl space floods out) and it works on so many different pests.
In summary, since thrips fly they can sometimes be a tough pest to both identify and treat. Based on the limited amount of information we have, it’s tough to say with any certainty that a quick “fogging” with a total release aerosol would really help. I suggest you treat the outside of the home with one of the residual products we have listed in our Thrip Control article and then dust the crawl space with Deltamethrin which will control pests in either area quite well. If you’re still seeing any thrip movement 1-2 weeks following a good thorough treatment, it would only seem logical that something must be nesting in the home and will require some further investigative work to solve the problem. Give us a call if you need further help or assistance; thrips can be frustrating if you don’t consider all nest sites and we should be able to do a good job of preparing you for what to expect prior to any treatment.