Red imported fire ants (Solenopsis invicta, also known as RIFA) are notorious. They can sting, inject poison and even kill small animals. Sometimes their nests are hidden under houses, making them hard to eliminate. Sarah Musselman, owner of EcoPro Services LLC in Austin, Tex., remembers one challenging RIFA infestation outside a home. After an initial application of an insecticide, she tried Rockwell Labs’ EcoVia EC Emulsifiable Concentrate. Musselman sprayed the repellent around the home’s perimeter. The next thing she knew, RIFA were pouring out of the ground where she sprayed, revealing their nests. “They were freaking out,” Musselman recalls. “If fire ants feel threatened, they will run upward from their mounds. The other products I used weren’t repellent enough to cause that.” EcoVia EC is one of eight EcoVia botanical, environmentally friendly pesticides that also includes EcoVia 3-in-1 Insecticide, Miticide & Fungicide Emulsifiable Concentrate; EcoVia G Granular Insecticide; EcoVia CA Contact Insecticide; EcoVia IB Insect Bloks; EcoVia MT Mosquito & Tick Control Concentrate; EcoVia WD Wettable Powder; and EcoVia WH Stinging Insect Killer. Musselman uses five EcoVia products along with InTice 10 Perimeter Bait, another ecofriendly insecticide by Rockwell. But it wasn’t until she was in business for a year before she even heard of EcoVia and InTice. “They allowed me to expand my client base,” Musselman says. “There’s a whole market of people out there who don’t want bugs in their homes, but do want to be environmentally friendly.”
HOW THEY WORK: All EcoVia products consist of plant oils that cause immediate paralysis and a fast-kill in many insects. The oils also repel the insects that come within the oils’ vicinity, which provides residual protection. InTice 10 attracts insects. Ants carry it back to their nests, allowing it to kill the colony. Other target insects die after eating the bait. EcoVia and InTice 10 have broad labels and kill and control mosquitoes, ticks, spiders, fruit flies, mites, cockroaches, ants, crickets, earwigs, millepedes, sowbugs, pill bugs, snails and slugs, among other pests. In addition to Rockwell helping her business grow, Musselman, an entomologist, appreciates that Rockwell, like EcoPro, is a woman owned pest management firm. Pest Management Professional Hall of Famer Dr. Cisse Spragins (Class of 2018) founded Rockwell and currently serves as CEO. “Cisse is so much fun,” Musselman says. “She’s a powerhouse — a scientist, a great speaker and she definitely knows what she’s talking about. It’s obvious that she cares.” Here’s a rundown of how Musselman uses other Rockwell products, in addition to EcoVia EC:
• EcoVia CA. Musselman applies this product into cracks and crevices inside homes. It’s effective on spiders, and customers love the cinnamon scent, she notes.
• EcoVia G. This is a valuable tool when one perimeter product isn’t enough, Musselman says. It helps create a stronger perimeter barrier, especially against tough pests like scorpions.
• EcoVia WD. Musselman uses it at full strength as a dust or wets it to use as a perimeter spray. It’s good in cracks and crevices, inside or outside.
• EcoVia WH. This is an expanding foam Musselman sprays directly onto hornet, yellowjacket or paper wasp nests from up to 18 feet. In many cases, the pests drop dead immediately.
• InTice 10. Musselman says InTice has a significant amount of active ingredient at 10 percent at its price point. She’s experienced success with it outside and inside, in attics and crawlspaces. It’s lethal to snails, ants, cockroaches and silverfish.