July 2018



Marty Overlilne
Aardvark Pest Management
Phildelphia, PA
Adam Witt
President Elect
Witt Pest Management
Pittsburgh, PA

Jeff King
Vice President
The Pest Rangers
Hanover Twp., PA

Keith Hamilton
Chairman of the Board
J.C. Ehrlich
State College, PA

Central Division
Gary Lesher
Perry Pest Control
Landisburg, PA
Leland Manuel
Manchester, PA

Keith Jones
Archer Pest Control
Camp Hill, PA
Eastern Division  
Bryan Levengood
Elverson, PA

Mike Snyder
Township Pest Control
Warrington , PA
Rob Byer
Mount Laurel , NJ
Northeast Division
Jeff King
The Pest Rangers
Hanover Twp., PA
Paul Kutney
The Pest Rangers
Larksville, PA
Peter Arnold
K-9 Bed Bug 
Detection Services
Pleasant Mount, PA
Western Division
Adam Witt
Witt Pest Management
Pittsburgh, PA
Scott Grill
Bill Grill Exterminating
Verona, PA
Sean Williams
Bill Grill Exterminating 
Verona, PA
Industry Liaison
Brian Smith
Sharon Hill, PA
Executive Director
Versant Strategies
Harrisburg, PA

Many thanks to these Past Presidents:
Len Bruno
Dana Lown
Harvey Goldglantz
John Morrison
Keith Hamilton
Mike Powers
Dave Hyres
Steve Rubel
Robert Jones
Charles Taylor
Joe Kahn
Ed Van Istendal
Paul Kutney
Rick Voyton

Are we missing someone? Let us know as we work to compile this record.

Dear Friends:

The membership drive is still on! If you have not renewed your membership, DO SO NOW!
Access renewal information via your MyNPMA account (accessible at  https://npmapestworld.org/ by selecting "Log-In/Members Only"). As well, information for 2018-19 membership dues is available if you  click here

Registration information is live for the Fall Seminars. Click the links below to ensure you don't miss out! Be on the lookout now for information regarding the PPMA Annual Conference, scheduled for December 3-4 in Lancaster, PA!

If we can be of assistance in any way, please reach out via email at cwright@versantstrategies.net or by phone at (800) 842-9090.

Team Versant  

Nature and Availability of Tick Control Services Survey

Tick season is in full swing in the Northeast, and adding to the region's tick problem a new Asian import that has joined the growing number of pests that can stand up to even the worst winters. The USDA has issued a fact sheet for this invasive newcomer, the bush or longhorned tick (Haemaphysalis longicornis) who is making headlines for overwintering successfully in NJ. 

The CDC is running a short, 20 question survey (even shorter for members currently not providing tick control) of companies in our region to get input from our members about their tick control practices and experience; even if you don't currently have tick-control clients, or have taken a prior survey, your input is invaluable in getting our industry's input heard in this emerging public health issue.

Click the link below to take the short survey:
DEP to Conduct Aerial Mosquito Control Operations on Monday, July 30, 2018, as Flood Waters Recede in Cumberland, Dauphin and Lebanon Counties
Harrisburg, PA - The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) will conduct aerial treatments to control large populations of mosquito larvae on Monday, July 30, 2018, in parts of Cumberland, Dauphin and Lebanon counties affected by recent flooding. These mosquito populations could carry West Nile Virus (WNV).

"The heavy rains have left large tracts of stagnant water that will produce an extraordinary number of mosquitoes if not treated quickly," said DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell. "Rather than wait for adult mosquitoes to emerge, DEP will eliminate mosquito larvae through aerial applications using environmentally friendly control products."

DEP Vector Management staff have determined that the treatment is necessary due to high levels of West Nile Virus detected in mosquito populations this year.

"Given the intensity of WNV activity, these suppression efforts are even more important with the onset of warmer weather and the widespread damp conditions caused by last week's floods," said McDonnell. "In addition, DEP strongly recommends that residents eliminate possible mosquito breeding habitat from their property using simple, common sense steps."

2018 has seen increased levels of WNV-positive mosquito samples, with WNV-infected mosquitoes and birds found in 48 Pennsylvania counties.

Beginning at approximately 7:00 AM on Monday, July 30, 2018, Helicopter Applicators Inc. of Gettysburg will spray a granular larvicide over almost 3,000 acres in Cumberland, Dauphin and Lebanon counties.

The larval mosquito control product, Vectobac GS, is not a chemical pesticide; rather, it is a species-specific bacterial agent that targets mosquito and black fly larvae when added to stagnant water.

Certain species of mosquitoes carry West Nile Virus, which, when transmitted to people, can cause West Nile encephalitis, an infection that can result in an inflammation of the brain. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, all residents of areas where virus activity has been identified are at risk of getting West Nile encephalitis; people over 50 have the highest risk of severe disease.

In addition to the aerial spraying, DEP strongly encourages residents to eliminate standing water, where mosquitoes can breed, from around their homes. Additional tips include:

* Dispose of tin cans, plastic containers, ceramic pots or similar water-holding containers that have collected on your property.
* Pay special attention to discarded tires. Stagnant water in tires is where most mosquitoes breed.
* Drill holes in the bottom of recycling containers left outdoors.
* Have clogged roof gutters cleaned every year, particularly if the leaves from surrounding trees have a tendency to plug up the drains. Roof gutters can produce millions of mosquitoes each season.
* Turn over plastic wading pools when not in use. Stagnant water in a wading pool becomes a place for mosquitoes to breed.
* Turn over wheelbarrows and don't let water stagnate in birdbaths. Both provide breeding habitats for domestic mosquitoes.
* Aerate ornamental pools or stock them with fish. Water gardens can become major mosquito producers if they are allowed to stagnate. Clean and chlorinate swimming pools not in use. A swimming pool left untended by a family on vacation for a month can produce enough mosquitoes to result in neighborhood-wide complaints. Mosquitoes may even breed in the water that collects on pool covers.

It is not necessary to limit any outdoor activities, unless local officials advise you otherwise. However, you can and should try to reduce your risk of being bitten by mosquitoes. In addition to reducing stagnant water in your yard, make sure all windows and doors have screens, and that all screens are in good repair. If West Nile virus is found in your area, here are some ways you can protect yourself.

* Take normal steps to prevent insect bites.
* Wear shoes, socks, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt when outdoors for long periods of time, or when mosquitoes are most active.
* Consider the use of mosquito repellent, according to directions, when it is necessary to be outdoors. Wash all treated skin and clothing when returning indoors.

To report concerns about mosquitoes and West Nile Virus, please find the appropriate contact here: http://www.westnile.state.pa.us/contacts.htm
Small Business Spotlight

Family Businesses Hire a New Type of Executive: Chief Referee

Families that share a business or other financial interests can struggle like any other. But their squabbles can do more than ruin an awkward summer barbecue. At stake is the economic stability of the business as well as the financial comfort of the family members.

In these disputes, money can act like kerosene on the flames of family discord. The typical reaction after a fight with a relative is to take a break, but those linked by financial interests are more likely to hire lawyers and fight for what they believe is theirs.

In an effort to keep a bad situation from getting worse, families are turning to so-called chief learning officers to help them learn to work together. The hope is that a more aligned family will make better decisions that will benefit its members and its business.

The chief learning officer is well established at large companies. In 1990, Jack Welch created the role at General Electric when he was chief executive. In the last three decades, people filling this position have acted as corporate educators. Their focus is on creating programs to train employees to make them and the company more productive.

In family operations, the role has morphed slightly: The focus is on training the relatives to be business owners and to think about the future of the enterprise.

Greg McCann, founder of McCann & Associates, acts as a chief learning officer for family businesses as well as a counselor to those who want to assume his role in a family enterprise. He said that getting families to shift their focus toward unity could be difficult, but that in the long run, they had more clarity about who they were and what they wanted. And sometimes, they chose not to stay together.

Read the rest of this New York Times article here.
Member Benefit Spotlight

Written by Caleb Wright, Executive Director.
Google search, "PA pesticide credits." That query draws up, "About 440,000 results." To any tech-savy technician or business owner, finding credits is the easy task. And often times, these are relatively inexpensive. However, as part of the industry, we add value to receiving credits at seminars.

Seminars become a place to network with others in the industry, making comrades in other companies that lead to life long friendships. The schedule is geared towards the industry because they are created by other pest control operators. The presenters are ones that other professionals value their opinion and information that they can provide. Meet with the area sales representatives for vendors. Insurance companies, tech companies, and marketing firms also join the mix of those who set up displays at these meetings.

These meetings come at a cost savings to you! Every PPMA sponsored event offers a discounted rate for dues-paid members. Check out the registration information for a seminar near you by clicking here

Have a topic you'd like brought to your division or the state meeting? Let us know! We'd be happy to hear from you!
News from NPMA

1. Farm Bill Moves to Conference Committee

The House voted by unanimous consent recently to reject the Senate amendment and to request a conference with the Senate on a new farm bill. Members of both legislative chambers are looking to negotiate a compromise on legislation to authorize a number of farm, agricultural and food programs that are set to expire at the end of September. Lawmakers will also decide whether to include NPMA's provision in the final version that passed the House (HR 2 - Section 9101), but not the Senate that would codify the exclusive role of State lead agencies, not political subdivisions, as pesticide co-regulators and to ensure that the expertise these agencies possess is both valued and integrated through their formal role in the development of pre-publication drafts of EPA regulatory proposals and regulations in final form. The House approved its version of the five-year farm bill in a 213-211 vote last month. The Senate also passed their version of the farm bill last month in an 86-11 vote. Bottom line: NPMA's provision is in the House version, but not the Senate version. Our goal is to make it into the final conference report agreed upon by House and Senate conferees.

2. Going to Conference. What is it?

Conference committees operate after the House and the Senate have passed different versions of a bill. Conference committees exist to resolve the differences between the two houses. Both houses of Congress must eventually pass identical legislation for the bill to be presented to the President. The two houses can reach that point through the process of amendments between Houses, where the House passes the Senate bill with a House amendment, or vice versa, but this process can be cumbersome. Thus, some bills pass both Houses through the use of a conference committee.

3.House Appoints Conferees on July 18, 2018

Speaker Paul Ryan named 29 Republicans as conferees, while Minority Leader Pelosi appointed 18 Democrats. A majority of the lawmakers (23) sit on the Agriculture Committee. The list includes Chairman Mike Conaway (R-Texas) and ranking member Collin Peterson (D-Minn.). Lawmakers from eight other panels also made the cut, including ones from Education and the Workforce, Energy and Commerce, Financial Services, Foreign Affairs and Natural Resources. Ultimately, the 23 Ag. Committee Members (13 R - 10 D) will be the lawmakers making the final decision on whether NPMA's provision becomes law. The provision of greatest interest to NPMA regarding exclusive authority of state lead agencies in intrastate commerce is within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Agriculture Committee, therefore only the Members appointed from that Committee will consider our provision. Please find the list of Ag. Committee conferees below:
House Ag. Committee Members
  • Chairman Mike Conaway (TX-11)
  • Glenn 'GT' Thompson (PA-05)
  • Bob Goodlatte (VA-06)
  • Frank Lucas (OK-03)
  • Mike Rogers (AL-03)
  • Austin Scott (GA-08)
  • Rick Crawford (AR-01)
  • Vicky Hartzler (MO-04)
  • Rodney Davis (IL-13)
  • Ted Yoho (FL-03)
  • David Rouzer (NC-07)
  • Roger Marshall (KS-01)
  • Jodey Arrington (TX-19)
4. Senate Farm Bill Conferees Expected Next Week

Based on our meetings with Senate Ag. staff and various Senate offices, we expect the Senate conferees to be announced next week. The list is expected to be comprised of seven Senators (four Republicans and three Democrats). On the Republican side, we expect Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (KY) and Ag. Committee Chairman Roberts (KS), John Boozman (AR), and John Hoeven (ND). On the Democratic side, we expect Ag. Committee Ranking Member Senator Stabenow (MI), Patrick Leahy (VT), and Sherrod Brown (OH). Once the group is selected we'll send out the final list.

5. NPMA Farm Bill Conference Committee Strategy

NPMA has held numerous meetings with offices on the House and Senate side for the last 16 months with renewed emphasis this week in speaking to House Ag. Committee Staff (majority and minority) and individual offices to discuss an effective strategy moving forward. We're working to ensure our message is heard but are cognizant that the Conference Committee will have until September 30th until the current the Farm Bill expires. We want to prepare for what will likely be a protected negotiation over the next two months and shortly after the Senate appoints their conferees will have a clear idea on our advocacy timeline.

Get Ready. We're Going to Need Your Help

For now, please let us know if you have relationships or operate in any of the House Conferees' Districts, as we will need your assistance with outreach to those offices; once the Senate Conferee list is released, we will employ the same strategy with them. NPMA will be using a number of tactics to engage you with your elected Reps. This will include but is no limited to, grassroots alerts, company letters, state association outreach, in-District events, and a Capitol Hill Strategy. Enjoy the weekend, and look forward to working together as we begin the Conference process.

As reported by NPMA Policy Team on July 20, 2018. 
Technical Spotlight

Spotted Lanternfly Management for Homeowners

Spotted lanternfly (SLF), Lycorma delicatula, is an invasive planthopper, native to China, that was first detected in 2014 in southeastern Pennsylvania. It feeds voraciously on many plants, including economically important crops like fruit trees, grapevines, hops, hardwoods, and ornamentals. If you think you have SLF, do not panic! First, make sure the insect you are seeing is the spotted lanternfly. Second, learn about its life cycle and habits. Third, determine what plants it is infesting and what it is not. Fourth, employ management strategies at the proper time of the year.

Identification and Life Cycle
There is one generation of SLF per year. The eggs are laid in late fall and hatch in the spring. Egg masses are laid on hard surfaces (trees, decks, houses, outdoor equipment, rocks, etc.) and protected with a mud-like covering. Each egg mass contains 30-50 eggs. After hatching and before reaching adulthood, SLF goes through four nymph stages. Nymphs are small (¼ to ½ inch) and hard to find. The first three stages (instars) are all black with white spots, and the last instar is red with white dots and black stripes (Figure 1). SLF adults emerge in July and are active until winter. This is the most obvious and easily detectable stage because they are large (~1 inch) and highly mobile. Adults have black bodies with brightly colored wings. Only the adults can fly. Because SLF adults jump more than fly, their wings often remain closed. SLF wings are gray with black spots, and the tips of the wings are black with gray veins.

Quick Facts
  • SLF is a destructive invasive pest, threatening agricultural, timber, and ornamental industries, and the plants in your backyard.
  • SLF is currently under quarantine in 13 counties in Pennsylvania.
  • SLF does not bite or sting.
  • Stop the spread of SLF by checking your car and any outdoor equipment (grills, mowers, firewood, etc.) when going in and out of the quarantine zone.
  • Manage SLF on your property by scraping eggs, banding trees, removing the favored host (tree-of-heaven), and using chemical control when appropriate.
  • Current Distribution and Reporting
  • An SLF quarantine is currently in effect for 13 counties in Pennsylvania (Figure 2). If you are located outside the quarantine zone and find a spotted lanternfly, collect and report it immediately with our online reporting system or by calling 1-888-4BAD-FLY. SLF found within the quarantine zone does not need to be reported.

Feeding Damage
SLF is capable of causing serious damage to its host, including oozing sap from the trees, wilting, leaf curling, and even death. SLF feeds using a piercing-sucking mouthpart tapped into the plant like a straw. When SLF feeds, it also excretes honeydew, or sugary water. This creates a sticky surface on and around plants that encourages the growth of black sooty mold. This mold is harmless to people but can cause damage to the plant. If you see black sooty mold or sticky areas on a plant or tree, it may be infested by SLF, but it could also be aphids, leafhoppers, planthoppers, or scale insects. Therefore, it is important to identify the cause of the mold, as control measures may differ for pests other than SLF. There is no way to prevent SLF from moving onto your property. Be aware that SLF is very mobile and management actions must be continuous to keep them off your property.

Stop the Spread
When you travel in and out of the quarantine zone, check your car and outdoor equipment (grills, outdoor furniture, landscaping supplies, mowers, etc.). Check for SLF egg masses from late fall to early spring. Remember that egg masses may be underneath your car or in your wheel well. During all other times of the year, check for nymphs and adults, and keep your windows rolled up when you park. Don't store things or park under infested trees, and don't move firewood.

Steps of Spotted Lanternfly Management
  • Stop the spread
  • Scrape eggs
  • Band trees to catch nymphs
  • Remove tree-of-heaven
  • Apply insecticides
  • Egg Scraping
Walk around your property to check for egg masses on trees, cement blocks, rocks, and any other hard surface. If you find egg masses on your property from September to June, you can scrape them off using a plastic card or putty knife. Scrape them into a bag or container filled with isopropyl alcohol or hand sanitizer. This is the most effective way to kill the eggs, but they can also be smashed or burned. Remember that some eggs will be laid at the tops of trees and may not be possible to reach.

Tree Banding
When the nymphs first hatch, they will walk up the trees to feed on the softer new growth of the plant. Take advantage of this behavior by wrapping tree trunks in sticky tape and trapping the nymphs. Any tree can be banded, but we recommend specifically banding tree-of-heaven, the preferred host, or trees where you see a lot of egg masses or nymphs (Figure 4). Special tape for this purpose can be purchased, though duct tape wrapped backward and tight to the tree also works well. Push pins can be used to secure the band. Adult SLF will avoid tape, so it is essential to band trees in the spring when there are nymphs. Be advised that birds and small mammals stuck to the tape, while rare, have been reported. Check and change traps every other week.

Host Removal
Tree-of-heaven (Ailanthus altissima) is an invasive plant, but it is common in landscape plantings, agricultural areas, and along the sides of roads. This is the preferred host for SLF and current management efforts are focused on removing this tree. This involves applying an herbicide to the tree and cutting it down from July to September. Failure to apply herbicide will result in new growth from the stump; even when treated, multiple applications may be necessary over time to completely kill the tree. These trees can get very tall, so seek the help of a tree care service if necessary. Tree-of-heaven is named because of its rapid growth, which can reach up to 100 feet tall and 6 feet in diameter. The bark of tree-of-heaven is similar to the outside of a cantaloupe. When crushed, the leaves put off a foul odor that many describe as rotten peanut butter. There are both male and female trees, and only female trees produce seed. They spread by seed and will also produce "clones" by their roots. This tree can be mistaken for other native species, including black walnut, hickory, and staghorn sumac. For help identifying and treating this plant, visit the Penn State Extension spotted lanternfly website. While tree-of-heaven is a preferred host, SLF feeds on a large variety of plants, including many of the trees in your backyard. Removing these may not be preferred; refer to the next section for further guidance.

For more information on chemical control of the Spotted Lanternfly, read the  full article here

If you find SLF outside the quarantine zone, report it! or call 1-888-4BAD-FLY

This fact sheet was produced by Penn State Extension in collaboration with the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture and the United States Department of Agriculture.

Upcoming Meetings          

Join the Central Division on August 21, 2018 for the Fall Seminar in Mechanicsburg, PA. Registration information is available here

The Western Division will be meeting on August 30, 2018 in Cranberry for their annual event. Click here for registration information.

The Eastern Division is set to meet on September 13, 2018 for their Fall Seminar. Click here for registration information.

The Meetings and Events section of the website is always the most up-to-date resource for happenings of the Association. Be sure to check it out!

The Eastern Division continues to hold its monthly meetings with varying topics of discussion on the second Thursday of every month at the Crowne Plaze in Trevose.  For more information on monthly topics and speakers, contact Sue at (215) 331-1121.
Legislative Update

The information below represents legislative activity (including bill introductions) that has occurred since the last newsletter.  For a full listing of legislation that Versant is tracking for PPMA, please contact us at (717) 635-2320 or cwright@versantstrategies.net.  Activity marked HCO or SCO indicates a co-sponsorship memo which precedes the actual introduction of legislation and is designed to secure the support of other legislators prior to introduction as a bill.

The State Legislature has been at recess since the last Inspector . However, on your behalf, Versant Strategies has continued to monitor legislation and co-sponsorship memos that have been introduced. No legislative activity specific to PPMA's interest has been seen since the last report. 
Increase Your Business Opportunities; Update your Find a Pro Listing Today
To update your company's service area, please follow the steps below:
  1. Log on to the Manage My Group area of the NPMA websitePlease note: in order to access the "Manage My Group" area of the NPMA website, you must be a company administrator. 
  1. Click on "Company Information" from the drop down menu.
  1. Scroll to the bottom of the page to find the Service Area section.
    1. Download the excel template found on this page.
    2. Update this template to include all of the zip codes that you service.
    3. Save the file on your computer.
    4. In the Service Area section click Choose File.  Locate the excel template file that you just saved. Click open.
    5. Click Upload file.
Once you've completed these steps your service on Find-a-Pro is instantly updated to include these new zip codes. 
If you are having problems accessing please contact NPMA at (703) 352-6762 or npma@pestworld.org.

Articles of Interest

07-27-2018 DEP to Conduct Aerial Mosquito Control Operations on Monday, July 30, 2018...
  (Press Release)

07-24-2018 Do you have your permit? What businesses need to know about the spotted lanternfly quarantine
While several businesses in Berks County are now offering services to help battle the spotted lanternfly, the pest affects many other businesses. All businesses, municipalities and government agencies that transport certain articles within or from the spotted lanternfly quarantine zone are... - Reading Eagle

07-18-2018 Accuweather: Above-average rainfall boosts mosquito populations across eastern U.S.
Above-average rainfall this spring and summer has already caused plenty of problems for residents in southwestern Pennsylvania, most of them flood-related. But the problems don't stop there: that flooding leaves behind countless pools of stagnant water, which in turn serve as a way for... - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

07-13-2018 County, municipal officials planning for next gypsy moth invasion
WRIGHT TWP. - Officials are hoping to make the most of a limited window of opportunity to control gypsy moths. The population is expected to fall for the next three to five years, with another outbreak occurring around 2022. In the interim, officials want to... - Wilkes-Barre Times Leader