This time of year is when all the little yard critters try to crawl into my house for water and warmth. I thought I had sealed up all access, but last night I found out different. When I removed my clothes from the dryer, they smelled bad. I made my son take the dryer vent off so I could check it. Sure enough, a little mouse had crawled up in the dryer vent and died. After I gagged awhile, I asked my husband to get another dryer vent and a strip of screen so that I could prevent this from happening again.
If you live in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Texas, Arizona or Colorado, you know that pest management is a year round proposition. Green pest control is mostly preventative. The first thing is to seal your home against intrusion by pests. Check any place there is a protrusion of pipe, vent or duct work through your foundation, walls or roof. If you have siding on your home, check anywhere the ground meets the siding for termites and carpenter ants. Seal these areas.
Ensure that your doors and windows shut securely and completely, using weather-stripping to add another layer of protection. Check the condensation pipe from the internal air conditioner/heat pump to where it empties outside your home and add a small piece of screen. Pest management includes keeping compost containers and garbage cans away from the home.
If prevention does not work, natural pest control products include boric acid, Diatomaceous earth, clove oil, mint, cedar, catnip, soapy water and even beer. Certain plants, like fleabane, marigolds and cucumbers, repel pest naturally. Check the library or local pest management service for information. Only use poison in your home or your yard as a last resort.