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Hello again, readers, this is Home Defenders secretary Alejandra presenting another interview with my boss Mike. Enjoy!

Question: What pest do you most fear invading your own home? Answer: Well, I would say powderpost beetles—they’re tiny wood-eating beetles that can only be eliminated by a very expensive fumigation—but they rarely infest mountain homes. So my answer is carpet beetles. They feed on spices, bird seed, dog and cat food, dead rodents, just about anything except for, well, modern synthetic carpets. Once the critters get inside a home, the homeowner has to dig through every drawer, cabinet, pantry and closet and throw out the infested food. Blah!

Q: What’s your best winter advice for homeowner? A: Beware of firewood. Rats and mice nest in woodpiles, and the wood itself is loaded with all kinds of pests, like termites, carpenter ants, and wood-destroying beetles, as well as those Goldspotted Oak Borers that kill oak trees. Wood is food for so many critters you might as well pile logs of beef jerky against your home. 

Q: What’s the most unusual job you’ve ever done? A: One time a woman called and begged me to get her cat down from a tree. I told her I had no experience at saving cats, but I drove to her home, climbed twenty feet up a cedar tree, and the cat jumped right into my arms. Piece of cake.

Q: If a magic genie gave you one pest control wish, what would it be? A: I’d wish that homeowners would go outside and dig away all the dirt that washes against their home. That would save mountain homeowners millions of dollars in dry rot repair bills. But, I’d probably have to go into hiding from those unemployed repair contractors’ own magic genies so, on second thought… everybody just crack a beer and watch a ballgame this weekend. No magic genie needed.

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