Independence Day is a time for food and fun with family and friends. There are also some uninvited guests that will undoubtedly try crashing your party.

Common cookout-invading pests include mosquitoes, stinging insects such as wasps and hornets, pesky ants like carpenter ants and pavement ants. The combination of holiday cookouts and high pest activity can make for a less than enjoyable experience if you’re not properly prepared.

Before and during your 4th of July festivities, take the following measures for an enjoyable and pest-free celebration:

  • Check your screen doors and patch any holes to keep pests out of your home.
  • Eliminate any source of standing water around the outside of your home to reduce the threat of mosquitoes.
  • Stinging insects love sweet treats and drinks. Keep food and beverages covered.
  • Consider using clear plastic cups for beverages. Cans and bottles make for great hiding spots for stinging insects.
  • Trash cans should be covered and kept away from the party area.
  • If possible, it’s best to serve food indoors and keep the outdoor space for eating.
  • Clean up any food or drink spills immediately.

Keep the bugs away and have a safe and happy 4th of July!

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