Verminators: how do victims live with that big of an infestation?

Note to mods; this is less about a TV show than it is about the people in it; feel free to relocate this post as you see fit.

I watch Verminators on the Discovery Channel on a fairly regular basis. I am often appalled at the severity an infestation achieves before a homeowner calls in the pros.

This week it was a couple, the wife of whom was dangerously allergic to bee stings. They had been living with a honeybee problem for some time. Regular findings of dead/live bees in the main living area, collection of numerous bees in cheesecloth sacks hung from indoor vents, and so on. Isotech folks discover that these were the super-aggressive africanized honey bees, and it’s a huge nest, something like 100 pounds of honeycomb; they estimated that it had been growing there for several years. How in the hell does a couple like this not notice a potentially lethal insect infestation for a couple of years? Gadzukes, if my wife was dangerously allergic to bee stings, I’d be on regular patrols of my property, looking for any signs of infestation, killing any hives before they grow to more than a few cells in size.

last week it was a woman with a roach infestation. She had treated it on and off (sort of) for years, but when Isotech arrived, she was shocked and appalled as the tech went digging through her kitchen, finding roaches by the hundreds in pretty much every dish, box and book he examined. The tech opined that it was likely she and her family were ingesting roach parts and roach feces with every meal they ate in that house.

Three years ago after moving into a new house my wife and I discovered a mouse in our kitchen. 15 minutes later, I was back from the store with mousetraps; another 15 minutes later, the mouse was dead, and we set about santizing every kitchen drawer he had visited. The next day I called a pest control service over to search for any signs of a wider infestation, and to advise me on how to prevent future intrusions. He didn’t find any other signs, but did find a likely entry point; immediately after he left I packed the hole with steel wool and roofing cement. No mice since. I expect I would not have made it onto the show unless I had a dozen mice crapping all over my house and had ignored the problem for years.

I hope that the people who end up on the show get a free psychological evaluation/counseling in exchange for allowing their stories to be told to millions of viewers.

I don’t know about bees, but for the most familiar vermin there is an algorythmical (sp?) increase in the populations. That is, you’ll see a roach on Friday, then see a couple more the next Monday, and by the time the weekend comes you are inundated. Add to that the time necessary to get an appointment with the pest control folks (and to get/negotiate a deal with a television production company) and you are seriously in the weeds.

I have nothing to contribute to the OP, but we actually called Isotech last spring when we thought we’d developed a bedbug infestation. (One of the perks of living in L.A. is that you can hire celebrity exterminators.)

We thought we’d brought the bedbugs back with us after a New Year’s trip to a mountain cabin. Isotech brought out their bedbug-sniffing dogs and went over the entire condo top to bottom. Eventually we figured out that they weren’t bedbugs at all but a rare variety of bird mites that were using the hamsters as a staging area to attack the rest of us.

The Isotech guys were really nice, and the bedbug-sniffing dogs were a hoot to watch!


or algorithmic…

I’m an exterminator in NYC and trust me the nightmares that i walk into like a house in queens that was so infested with mice i opened the door and mice ran out on top of my feet. I was so bad all there food was consumed by the rodents and the only reason i got called in because there neighbors called the city. They dint even care about the mice.

I’m finding this phenomena as well: some people, particularly those from big cities like New York, are unable to live with insects. To me, they’re rather weird.

I live in a place where there are huge yards, tons of public parks, and every street except the highway is tree-lined. Ants, flies and roaches are commonplace, and even centipedes. At a recent BBQ, there were roughly 1k flies attacking the fish sauce.

A coworker I had from Indiana said the most shocking thing about coming here was the flies. I thought he was crazy: where on Earth did he come from that didn’t have flies?

Apparently, in many big cities, insects are rare, which is why some people overreact to them.

Here, the roaches average 3 inches long and fly. During the summer solstice, they come out in droves to mate.

When I was in Vegas, we drove through the country to visit the Grand Canyon. On the way, one of the tourists on the bus was talking to the bus driver about keeping the windshield clear of bug guts. At the end of the trip, the bus window was nearly caked over with bug guts except for the spot where the wipers worked. So, it’s not like insects don’t exist at all in the US.

But, there’s something weird going on in the cities. My guess is that if you pave something over, the insects are forced to leave.

Well, with the big flying “palmetto bug” cockroaches you rarely get a NYC-style infestation. When I was a kid and we lived in a condo, we did the “we kill them, they move next door, they kill them, rinse and repeat” cycle, and if you went into the kitchen at night and turned on the light, a shit-ton of those fuckers would run for it. Like, I don’t know, ten. Ten is a lot of those.

With those little German cockroaches they have up north, ten is a tea party. An infestation of those bastards is talking thousands and thousands all over the place, which you never see with the good old flying American cockroach. Probably because the foreign cockroaches take all their jobs.

So I always figured that was the explanation - those nasty little yankee guys just produce more of themselves. And a few months ago when our neighbors got evicted, some of the nasty little German dudes moved into my house, and there were indeed more of them than when the darker flying giant ones decide to put down roots. (Couple weeks of boric acid and traps did the trick, by the way - it wasn’t what you’d call an infestation, just a lovely parting gift.)

So, just to be clear, you’re saying that you would have no problem living in conditions as described in the OP? Hundreds of cockroaches infesting every dish and food item in the kitchen? Hundreds of bees living in the vents and swarming?

I don’t freak out if I see a few bugs – we’re currently dealing with a pesky fruit fly infestation, and while annoying I am not running screaming for the hills or anything – but I would have quite a large problem with hundreds of cockroaches infesting my kitchen and foodstuffs.

I used to have mice and I am glad that I own a top-notch verminator. My other dogs may have been hell on rodents outside, but they thought anybody inside belonged there. He is not burdened by such misconceptions.