“Novato-based Atco Pest Control sometimes uses rodenticides, but is well-known for using integrated pest management techniques to control pests without using harmful chemicals. The company handles all the pest management issues for the county, which mandates they don’t use rodenticides.
Atco Pest Control owner Richard Estrada said trapping rodents has been just as effective as poisoning them.
“We’ve had great success handling it in this manner,” Estrada said. “There’s a lot of concern locally with regards to secondary poisoning, so that’s the reason we’ve moved to trapping instead of poisons.”
He said the only downside is that trapping can be more expensive, requiring someone service the traps every week instead of checking on poison boxes monthly.
For homeowners, he said the key to keeping pests out is in rodent-proofing buildings.
“If you can seal a home or structure so rodents can’t get inside, in essence you’ve solved the rodent problem,” Estrada said.”