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staying fit in retirement
Life Tips

Staying Fit In Retirement

Many of us spend years looking forward to retirement only to find that when the time comes, we feel lost, lonely, and completely unprepared for all of the spare time that we suddenly have. Retirement isn’t always easy. It can be hard to fill your hours and days, your health can decline, you can lose touch with your friends, and many people who suddenly go from a busy working life to a quieter retirement struggle with their mental health.

Another issue many of us face post-retirement is a decline in fitness, which leads to weight gain, poor heart health, worsens mental health issues, and can increase the risk of a whole range of health issues. If your job meant that you were on your feet a lot, or always on the go, you might have found it easy to stay fit while you were working.

Your routines and relationships might have made working out easy, fun, and a great way to reduce stress. Then suddenly, you find yourself leading a more sedentary lifestyle with greater health concerns and it’s no wonder that your fitness levels drop. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to keep fit, even as you get older. Here’s a look at some tips to help you.

Get into Good Habits

Exercise doesn’t have to mean hours in the gym or long runs. Being active for 10 minutes, a few times a day can be as beneficial, especially if you are new to exercise. Get into good habits that are easy to maintain, such as stretching when you get up and before bed and going for a daily walk.

Try New Hobbies

Hobbies are a great way to meet new people, become more active, and maintain or increase your fitness levels. Gardening is a popular hobby with seniors, but you might also enjoy things like swimming, nature photography, or cycling.

Listen to Your Body

As we get older our joints become stiff, we lose flexibility, and our muscle tone declines. This is normal, but unfortunately, it makes injuries more likely. Residents at McKnight Place receive onsite restorative physical therapy to help keep their bodies strong, enabling them to enjoy the benefits of exercise.

As you exercise, listen to your body. If something hurts, stop and rest, see your doctor if you are worried, and don’t be surprised if it takes you a long time to build up strength and fitness.

Join Clubs and Groups

One of the biggest benefits of moving into assisted or independent living communities is the opportunity to meet people, join groups, and create a new social circle. But you can also do this while living in your own home. Look for local groups for seniors, such as walking groups to stay active and make friends.

Walk Every Day

Walking is one of the most effective and underrated ways to keep fit. Walk with friends or listen to audiobooks and podcasts and enjoy being out in nature. Try to go for at least a short walk every day, even when you don’t fancy it.

It’s normal for our bodies to change as we get older, and if you are out of practice, you might find exercise difficult. Start slowly, build up gradually, drink plenty of water, and check in with a healthcare professional if you have any concerns.

which leggings are best
Life Tips

Which Leggings Are Best For Working Out?

Leggings for women are becoming increasingly more popular. There was a time when this clothing was reserved for leisure wear or exercising. Today, women wear leggings for many occasions at all times of the year. It’s not hard to see why either. Leggings are comfortable, durable, and come in a wide range of styles and colors.

Still, wearing leggings for exercising purposes makes sense. If you are looking for a new pair or two for working out, it’s helpful to know which ones will give you the most for your money.

You need leggings that will last and stand up to your exercise routines. And you also want to feel good and be able to bend, twist, and move around without feeling restricted. Fortunately, you have some options to turn to.

What to Look For

Before you start to shop, keep a few things in mind. You want leggings that will last for many workouts ahead. You don’t want a pair that will bunch up or restrict your movement much. However, there should be some tightness to the pants so you can have the right support for your legs.

High-Waist Yoga Pants With Pockets

Leggings that women seem to love right now are yoga pants. These combine comfort with quality, stretchy material that breathes well. When you purchase yoga pants, it’s nice to find a pair with pockets. Here, you can keep your phone, keys, and other small items.

You’ll be able to find a pair in a wide range of colors to fit your preferences and mood. Plus, if you use an Old Navy coupon or similar discounts from other places, you can save money. You shouldn’t have to spend an arm and a leg on a good pair.

High-Waist Workout Pants

If you’re doing more than yoga and stretching, you may need to step things up a notch and buy some pants made specifically for higher-impact workouts. Workout pants are ideal if you plan on running or jogging, as well as playing sports and other activities.

The stretchy material won’t leave you feeling constricted. And the good news is you can find some of these pants for an affordable price, around $25.

Elation 7/8 Tight

While working out, sometimes a little tighter isn’t a bad thing. In this case, you should shop for Elation 7/8 Tight workout pants. They are smooth, but the tightness will support you well as you work out.

You can find a wide range of styles and colors to meet your needs and preferences too. If you like high-rise styles, you can find these. There are also Elation 7/8 Tight pants in capri styles.

Align Pants

As for yoga itself, you can’t beat these pants for this activity. The Align Pants are made for yoga, but you can feel great wearing them for a host of leisure activities. Wear them while lounging around the house. These pants are lightweight, too, which is a huge plus when you shop for workout apparel.

Put these pants at the top of your list when you shop for workout apparel. You can’t go wrong with any of these items.

when can you drink carbonated drinks after tooth extraction
Life Tips

When Can You Drink Carbonated Drinks After Tooth Extraction?

If you’re having a tooth extraction procedure soon, you surely have a lot of questions. After all, it is not something you should take lightly if you want it to go well.

If one of your questions is: when can you drink carbonated drinks after tooth extraction? You have come to the right place. The article will explain everything you need to know.

Why Are Carbonated Drinks Forbidden In the First Place?

Forbidden

Before you find out the answer to the question; when can you drink carbonated drinks after tooth extraction? you need to know why they are forbidden to begin with.

While the tooth extraction itself is not a difficult or painful process, you will experience quite a bit of discomfort in the days following it. You will likely have to deal with some minor bleeding and pain as the wound begins to heal.

In order for your gums to heal, a blood clot has to form and fill the tiny hole where the tooth used to be. It is important that you don’t do anything to disrupt this process, as that will prolong the recovery time and cause you unnecessary pain.

Now, there are certain substances that can dislodge and dissolve the blood clot in your mouth. These include all alcoholic beverages and carbonated drinks/sodas. Apart from messing with the blood clot, sodas can also irritate the extraction site and cause an infection. Such infections are notoriously hard to treat and can last for weeks and months.

Thus, you should not drink any carbonated drinks immediately following tooth extraction if you want your recovery to go as planned and without any issues.

So, When Can You Drink Carbonated Drinks After Tooth Extraction?

When

In most cases, the blood clot that fills the extraction site needs about 48 hours to form fully. That means that you will need to stay away from any carbonated drinks for just as long.

However, not everyone has the same experience when it comes to blood clotting. Some people might need more time, while others might need less. Thus, it might be better to wait a bit longer than just 48 hours. Waiting for a whole week might be the safest option, but if you can’t, three days is a good choice too.

In any case, it is best to ask your dentist what they think the best time frame might be. They have the experience necessary to predict how you might react and advise you accordingly. Follow their advice, and you should be fine.

What Happens After?

After

After the initial 48 hours (or more) are up, it should be safe for you to drink your favorite carbonated beverages again. At the 10 day mark, granulation tissue will start forming, and it will cover the hole completely.

The tissue will allow the whole site to heal nicely. Moreover, you won’t be feeling any pain and discomfort as this process begins. You will be able to eat and drink most foods and beverages without any issues.

At this point, it will be fully safe for you to drink sodas. They will not be able to cause any damage to the newly formed tissue, nor will they be able to seep under it.

Your dentist will most likely schedule a follow-up appointment two weeks after the procedure to check if everything is healing nicely. They might also discuss any other necessary treatment options with you.

If anything is amiss, they will simply give you advice on how to handle the situation. That might include watching what you eat and drink for a bit longer. However, such situations are rare.

Are There Any Other Beverages You Should Avoid?

Beverages

Apart from carbonated drinks, you should also stay away from any drinks high in acid in the first few days after tooth extraction. These include lemonade and orange juice. Moreover, you should avoid drinking anything hot.

Both acidic drinks and hot beverages can dislodge the blood clot forming at the extraction site, just like sodas. Thus, it is best to avoid them fully for at least three days and even more if you can bear it. That way, you will be able to heal completely, and you won’t feel any unnecessary discomfort.

how to remove labels from wine bottles
Life Tips

A Complete Guide On How to Remove Labels from Wine Bottles

Whether you are a winemaker, a wine and craft beer enthusiast, or a crafter, you have to be able to remove labels from wine bottles. Remember, some of these labels are tightly stuck on the bottles, and therefore you need to remove them carefully to avoid breaking the glass bottles.

This article offers you a complete guide on how to remove labels from wine bottles.

Why You Need to Remove Labels from Wine Bottles

Why

There are many reasons why you may want to remove labels from your wine bottles. For example, you may want to remove labels from your favorite wine bottles to save them in your wine journal or scrapbook. Also, if you are a winemaker, you may have to remove labels from your wine bottles for re-use.

Many private winemakers who do not have the financial muscle to manufacture their own wine bottles tend to remove commercial labels from discarded wine bottles before reusing them with their own labels.

This helps them to save money because they do not have to purchase new bottles. If you are an artisan or crafter who uses wine bottles to create different pieces of art, you will have to remove commercial labels from the bottles before you use them.

Many people just throw their wine bottles away when they are empty not realizing how useful they can be. Many crafters will pay a lot of money for empty wine bottles because they can use them to create a lot of valuable glassware.

Some of the most common creations made from wine bottles include wine bottle glassware, wine tile coasters, framed wine labels, wall and desk art, among others.

Even if you are not a professional artisan, you may need to use wine bottles as flower vases and other décor elements. If you want to paint your wine bottles for this aesthetic purpose, you should start by removing the labels before painting them.

However, there are several important factors you need to consider when removing labels from wine bottles.

Factors to Consider When Removing Labels from Wine Bottles

Factors to Consider

Before you remove labels from your wine bottles for any of the above-mentioned reasons, you need to consider the following factors.

  • Type of Label

The method you use to remove a label from a wine bottle will depend on the type of label you are dealing with. So, start by checking what the label is made of. If it’s made of plastic (like a sticker), it is less permeable to water.

Therefore, to remove a plastic label from a wine bottle, you will need to use heat or physical means such as a razor blade. But this depends on what you want to save – the label or the bottle? If the label is made of paper, then it’s more permeable to water and other liquids.

So, you can use other label removal methods, depending on whether you are trying to save the bottle or the label.

  • Adhesives Used

Labels are adhered to wine bottles using a wide range of adhesive polymers including pressure-sensitive adhesives (stickers) and water-based glues. But since you are not an adhesive expert, you will have to assess the type of adhesive used using visual assessment. Just take a razor blade and lift a corner of the label.

If the adhesive looks like traditional glue, you should use a detergent or water-based removal method to remove the label. But if the adhesive looks like a sticker, then you should consider removing the label using heat and other physical methods.

How to Remove Labels from Wine Bottles: Different Methods

How to Remove

There are several effective techniques that you can use to safely remove labels from your wine bottles. These methods depend on the type of label and adhesive you are dealing with, as well as what you are trying to save (label or bottle). Here are the most common methods used to remove labels from your wine bottles.

  • Wet Methods

This label removal method is suitable for removing labels from both empty and full wine bottles. It is also suited for labels adhered to bottles using conventional glue because they are permeable to water and other liquids.

1. The OxiClean Method

This label removal technique involves the use of OxiClean solution, which is very good at removing stains and relaxing stiff adhesives.

This technique has proved to be quite effective on different labels including paper, plastic, and glue wine bottle labels. Just pour a small cup of OxiClean solution into a bucket full of water and dip the wine bottle into the solution.

Leave the bottle in the bucket for about 30 minutes.

If the label doesn’t come out on its own, you can use a sharp knife or razor blade to lift the corner of the label gently. When you remove the label from the bottle, place it on waxed paper so that it doesn’t stick on the surface.

2. Baking Soda

Baking soda is one of the most common household items because it can be used to prepare different meals. But apart from baking your favorite cookies, you can also use baking soda to remove labels from your wine bottles. Just fill a bucket with warm water and add 5-10 tablespoons of baking soda. Put the wine bottle into the solution and leave it in for 30 minutes.

The label will likely be floating in the solution after 30 minutes. But if it doesn’t come out, you can easily peel it off using a sharp knife or razor blade. If you only want to save the bottle, just wipe the label off with a piece of cloth of steel wool. But if you are interested in the label, just allow it to dry completely before using it.

3. Hot Water

This is one of the easiest ways to remove labels from wine bottles, especially empty bottles. If soaking the bottle with hot water doesn’t work, you can simply fill it with hot water. You will also need to have a towel, pair of gloves, utility knife or a razor blade, and steel wool.

Just soak the bottle with hot water for a few seconds and then pour the hot water into the bottle and let it stay for 10 minutes. Then, put on your gloves and peel of the label using your fingers or steel wool.

If this doesn’t work for you, just pour hot water into a bucket and add a few drops of dishwasher detergent. Then, soak your wine bottle in the solution for about 15 minutes.

Then, remove the bottle from the solution and dry it with a towel. Peel off the label with your fingers or a sharp knife. But you should work slowly to avoid scratching the bottle. If you want to use the label, allow it to dry overnight before using it.

4. Ammonia

Ammonia has proved to be quite effective in removing labels from wine bottles. But it should be used in a well-ventilated room because of its strong odor. Just pour a cup of ammonia into a bucket of water and immerse the wine bottle into the solution. Cover the bucket and leave it for about half an hour.

Then, put on your gloves and remove the bottle from the solution. You can peel off the label using your hands or a sharp knife. Wash the wine bottle in cold water to get rid of any residues.

  • Dry Methods

Label Lift Technique

Oenophilia Label Lift

Image source: Pinterest

If you are interested in keeping the label in your scrapbook or wine journal, this label removal method is the most suitable one. This method involves the use of Oenophilia Label Lift – a solution that comes in packets of 10 and 50 grams. This solution allows the label to come off easily and while it’s still intact.

You simply apply the solution gently over the label and rub it in for about two minutes using a hard object like the backside of a spoon. Then, peel off the label. You should also trim the edges of the label with scissors or a sharp razor blade to make it neat.

  • Heat Methods

Here are the most effective heat methods that you can use to remove a label from a wine bottle.

1. Baking

If you do not want your wine label to appear laminated when you remove it from the wine bottle, this method is the perfect option for you. It is also the most effective label removal method if you want to make a wine label trivet or place the label on a photo collection or portrait for framing.

Before baking your wine bottle in the oven, remove the foil cap or the wax bottle cap, make sure there are no drops of wine left inside the bottle. Then, preheat your oven to about 350°F for five minutes. Place the wine bottle in a baking bowl to prevent it from rolling around in the oven.

Bake the wine bottle for about 10 minutes to allow the adhesive on the back of the label to melt. Then take the bottle out of the oven using gloves and place it on a cooling rack. When it cools off check if the label is ready for removal. Peel the label off using a sharp knife or razor blade.

Leave the label face down on a sheet of parchment paper for a few minutes to allow the adhesive to dry up.

2. Steaming

Steaming

If you do not want to submerge your wine bottle in water, steaming it is the best option. You just need to pour water into a large pot and boil it. Then, hold the wine bottle of the steam using gloves for about half an hour. Make sure you rotate the bottle while steaming it so that the back and front sides of the label can be fully heated.

Use a razor blade or a sharp knife to peel off the label and leave it overnight to air-dry before using it.

3. Chill and Steam Techniques

This technique is almost the same as heating, but less effective. It involves putting the wine bottle in the freezer for about 25 minutes and placing it in a steamy, humid room for about half an hour. Once you have steamed the label completely, try to peel it off with your hands or a sharp knife. It should come off easily.

how to open a locked bedroom door without a key
Life Tips

DIY: How to Open a Locked Bedroom Door Without a Key

Have you ever found yourself locked outside your bedroom with the key nowhere in sight? Even worse, have you lost your key and now have no access to your room at all? Worry not, because this article will show you how to open a locked bedroom door without a key. Read on!

How to Open a Bedroom Door Without a Key: 4 Ways That Work

1. A Credit Card Can Help With a Spring Lock

If your bedroom door has a spring lock, you can easily open it with the help of a credit card. In fact, you can use any laminated card to open such a lock. However, the card will not work on a deadbolt.

First off, you need to place the credit card between the lock and the frame. Use as much force as you need, but be careful not to break the card. Then, swipe the card against the frame and bend it back quickly. That should help force the lock back inside the door, allowing you to go in.

There is also a solution if you can’t find any space between the lock and the frame. In that case, force the card between the door frame and the space above the lock. Once it is in there, angle the card towards the frame and swipe it quickly downwards. Bear in mind that a sturdier card might be necessary for this method.

It might take a few tries for you to get this right, so don’t worry if it doesn’t work right away. Keep trying, as this is the best way to open a door with a spring lock.

2. Use a Small Screwdriver

A screwdriver can come in handy when it comes to doors with privacy handles. Such doors lock when you push a button on the door handle. So, if you ever find yourself locked out a door like that, look for a tiny hole in the doorknob or handle. When you do, find a small screwdriver that fits the hole.

Place the tip of the screwdriver into the hole, and push it as far as it can go. Then, start turning the screwdriver in the direction you would turn your key. In just a few seconds, the screwdriver should catch a groove and open the lock with no issues.

3. Pick the Lock

As bad as it might sound, sometimes you have to pick your own lock to get inside a room. To do this, you need an Allen key and an unbent paper clip.

You start the process by inserting the shorter end of the key into the lower part of the keyhole. Apply a bit of pressure and start turning the lock as a key would. Once you feel it turn slightly, keep the Allen key as it is and continue applying pressure.

Then, take your paper clip and carefully push it in at the lower end of the keyhole. Lift it back and upward, and keep repeating the process in a circular motion until you hear the little click indicating that the door is unlocked. Of course, keep applying pressure with the Allen key all the while.

Be patient, as it will probably take you several minutes to get the lock to open.

4. If All Else Fails…

If none of the solutions above work, your best bet is to hire a professional locksmith. They know how to open a locked bedroom door without a key easily, and they have all the necessary equipment to do it safely and with no damage to your lock or door. If you are not in a hurry and can wait, hiring a pro is the best way to go.

how to stretch leather boots
Life Tips

Finding the Perfect Fit: How to Stretch Leather Boots

A pair of good leather boots can mean the world for anyone who wears them every day for work. They’re warm, protect your feet from any outside influence, and they are some of the most durable pieces of footwear out there.

However, they are notoriously hard to break in, especially when they are just a tiny bit too small. That is why knowing how to stretch leather boots is an essential skill.

Below, you will find tips and tricks necessary for stretching your leather boots that will make wearing them a pleasure. Read on!

Leather Boots: What You Need to Know

Leather Boots

Leather boots are necessary footwear for people working in many professions. These boots make doing any job safely possible, especially ones in cold and otherwise tough conditions. However, the boots are also durable enough to last for years even if you wear them every day. That makes them perfect for anyone, regardless of their job.

Apart from durability and protection, leather boots also offer you the opportunity to make a fashion statement. Just like denim jackets or white tees, leather boots never go out of style. They fit into most casual outfits and can make you look tough and cool on any occasion.

Of course, all of the above is only true if the boots fit you perfectly. Otherwise, you’ll be uncomfortable and in pain. It is important that you don’t force yourself to wear shoes that are a bit too small. Though it might not seem like too big of a deal in the beginning, it could cause severe injuries to your toes and feet in the long run.

Luckily, leather is a material that can stretch if you need it to. All you need is some pressure, heat, or a stretching spray. So, if your boots aren’t a perfect fit just yet and you are looking for ways to make that happen, read on. The sections that follow will teach you how to stretch leather boots like a pro.

Note: don’t try to stretch boots that are a whole size too small. These techniques should only be used for boots that don’t fit too well because they are new and need to be broken in.

How to Stretch Leather Boots: Different Techniques

From softening the leather with heat and oils to using a boot stretcher, here are the best tips on how to stretch leather boots.

1. Use a Stretch Spray

Stretch Spray

Image source: Pinterest

A stretch spray or oil conditioner for leather is a handy tool that can help your boots fit you better. You can get it in most well-stocked supermarkets and in all stores that sell leather clothing and footwear.

It is vital that you only apply this spray or oil to real leather. Synthetic materials might get damaged by it, and the spray will most likely not work. In addition, you need to follow the instructions that come with the spray carefully.

The instructions will tell you whether to apply the spray on the inside or the outside of the boots. They will also tell you how long you should let the boots sit before you can put them on and whether you should repeat the spraying process more than once.

The spray or conditioner works rather simply. It softens the leather and makes it easier for you to put on the boots and stretch them naturally over time. Follow the instructions closely, and your boots will be softer and ready to be worn every day.

2. Use a Blow Dryer

Blow Dryer

Heat can also help soften up the leather, allowing you to stretch your boots more easily. To get the necessary temperature, you only need a blow dryer. However, you need to be careful not to damage the leather. To avoid that, make sure the dryer is far enough away from the leather.

Keep the dryer at least 5 inches away from the boots while it is on. Blow dry them for about 30 seconds at a time until you feel the leather soften. It is best to apply heat to the parts that trouble you the most, such as the toes.

You can use the dryer as many times as it takes for you to feel more comfortable wearing the shoes, or when you feel you have enough space to walk comfortably. You can also put on the boots and wear them immediately, without waiting for the leather to cool.

3. Wearing Thick Socks

Socks

If you want to stretch your boots without softening the leather, you can put on a pair of thick socks (or two pairs of regular ones) and wear the boots around the house for a few hours. The leather will gradually expand to mold to your sock-clad feet. When you take the boots off, they will fit you perfectly once the socks are off too.

You can also use this technique after you’ve softened your boots with heat or a spray. That will speed up the process considerably.

4. Wearing the Shoes In Moderation

Wearing

If you want to break in your shoes naturally while wearing them outside, that is possible as well. You only have to make sure you don’t wear them for the entire day right away. Instead, try wearing them for a few hours every day while going to the shop or running any other errands.

Doing so will ensure your boots stretch over time without any real effort on your part. Just make sure you don’t hurt yourself or get any blisters, and you’ll be fine.

How to Stretch Leather Boots: Pro Tips

1. Get a Boot Stretcher

A sure way to stretch your boots is to get a shoe stretcher and let it do the job for you. You can get one in most shoe shops, as well as online, on Amazon, and other sites.

A shoe stretcher is pretty easy to use. Holding the stretcher by the handle, you place it inside the boot and start rotating. When you can see the stretcher fits inside the shoes snuggly, leave it as it is.

It is pivotal that you let the stretcher sit inside for around 8 hours, as that will give the leather enough time to stretch permanently. However, don’t leave it for much longer than that, as it could stretch the boots too much.

When the 8 hours pass, check the boots and try wearing them. If they fit great and no longer make you uncomfortable, your job is done. But if you still feel some discomfort, put the stretcher back in and repeat the process. Just leave it for a few hours less this time around.

2. Make Your Own Boot Stretcher

If you don’t have money to buy a boot stretcher or simply can’t find one in any stores near you, don’t fret. There is actually a way for you to make your own makeshift stretcher. And the best thing is, you already have all the things you need at home.

For example, the easiest thing you can do is stuff your boots with a bunch of newspapers. Make sure you get in as much as can fit so that the bots are filled completely. Then, leave the boots to sit for at least a day.

Since you aren’t using a real stretcher, the boots will need more time to give in. So, this method might not be what you need if you are in a hurry and need to wear your boots ASAP. But if you have the time, go for it. It is cheap, and it works wonders.

A great tip on how to stretch your leather boots with no newspapers is to use anything else that you can stuff into the boots to achieve the same effect. As long as it fills out the shoes completely and you have it near you, it can help you.

how to get rid of pigeons
Animals, Life Tips

How to Get Rid of Pigeons: 7 Effective Ideas

Pigeons. Love them or hate them, these white grey birds are everywhere. While they’re harmless for the most part, too many pigeons can be quite a nuisance. They can damage property; they poop everywhere; and, worst of all, they can carry diseases.

Hence why pest control often includes them on their list of pests to exterminate. However, if you don’t want the hassle of paying them to remove the pigeons, you can always do it yourself.

Here’s a basic guide on how to get rid of pigeons in the quickest and easiest way possible.

An Introduction to Pigeons

Pigeons

For such a common bird, pigeons have a surprisingly complex history. They’ve been a constant fixture in human settlements ever since they were domesticated in Mesopotamia some 5,000 years ago. During that period, they served as a convenient food source in areas prone to droughts.

They were also a delicacy in many Asian cuisines, most notably Indian. However, as useful as they were, they’ve become quite the bother in recent years. For example, feral pigeons are a major problem for homeowners and businesses alike.

These birds exhibit a behavior known as roosting, meaning they will typically congregate together in large groups on rooftops or sidewalks. Such large groups will often go wherever there’s an abundant food source, which can pose a significant issue for those in the food industry.

Even if you don’t actively feed pigeons, you’ll likely drop a piece of food on the floor or dump it in the trash can. This will inevitably attract the pigeons, who will then persistently hang around restaurants, food processing plants, and parks.

But wait, that doesn’t sound so bad. Pigeons are totally harmless, and feeding them can actually be entertaining. However, remember that these birds are one of the most prominent carriers of diseases next to rodents and livestock.

Pigeon droppings contain several different types of fungi, including histoplasmosis. This fungus attacks the lungs and can cause severe damage, especially if you’re immunocompromised.

So having pigeons drop waste around human food sources can be incredibly dangerous for public health. In addition, large quantities of pigeon poop can be very slippery, which is always an issue during the colder months.

Considering these facts, it’s no wonder why people call these birds rats with wings. It’s even more understandable why you might want to know how to get rid of pigeons.

Is It Legal to Kill Pigeons?

Kill

Killing an animal is always a painful thing, even if it’s a pest. However, sometimes it’s unavoidable. It may even happen by accident while you’re trying to get rid of the pigeons humanely. Therefore, you likely want to know what the law says about killing pigeons. Is it legal or not?

The short answer is yes and no. This is mostly due to the pigeon’s status as a domesticated bird. Depending on where you live, different countries afford domesticated animals different rights.

In the European Union, for example, a pigeon has the same rights as any other pet animal. Though it’s technically a feral, the law still views it as a pet without an owner due to its dependency on humans to survive.

On the other hand, the US has a completely different stance on these birds. Almost all bird species in the US, Canada, and Mexico are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. The MBTA, as it’s abbreviated, protects all native bird species which migrate.

However, the act excludes three species — the English house sparrow, the European starling, and, of course, the feral pigeon.

Since none of these birds are native to the region, it’s completely legal to dispatch them using culling techniques. Some of the most common ones include trapping, shooting, or poison. The only caveat here is that you have to do this ‘humanely.’ Now, this is the tricky part, because it begs the question — how do you kill an animal humanely?

For example, poisoning is a valid and common culling technique. However, many would consider the slow death a poisoned pigeon would experience to be incredibly cruel. What one person thinks is humane may not be so for someone else.

Therefore, different municipalities have varied stances on what is considered animal cruelty. In New York, you could get into serious trouble if you poisoned pigeons with Avitrol, while in Long Island no one would bat an eye.

So before you go ahead with your extermination program, be sure to check your local law on it.

Ways to Get Rid of Pigeons

Get Rid of

As previously mentioned, killing pigeons can be a murky business due to differing animal cruelty laws in the US. In the UK, the matter is even more strict thanks to the Wildlife and Countryside Act of 1981.

This law forbade the killing of pigeons and any other wild bird species. So with the complicating matters, the only other option is to use non-lethal methods. Fortunately, when discussing how to get rid of pigeons, there’s no shortage of those.

1. The Natural Method

falcon

While there are quite a few anti-pigeon products available on the market, the natural method is always the best. In this case that would be keeping a falcon around. As birds of prey, falcons naturally hunt and kill pigeons. This makes them a great deterrent for the feathered menaces, as they trigger the pigeons’ fight or flight response.

Moreover, introducing predators to the area is a fantastic way to keep pigeon numbers down. A predator functions as a natural method of population control. Falcons will not only kill the weak and sick pigeons but also ensure that they don’t breed wildly out of control.

Plus, a natural method guarantees that you won’t have to go get your hands dirty and kill the birds yourself.

Simply allow the falcon to circle your property, and see the pigeons vanish in terror, never to return.

2. Other Methods

Keeping a falcon around sounds lovely in theory. However, in practice, it’s expensive and time-consuming, especially if you don’t have any experience keeping birds.

Luckily, you don’t have to do something quite so complicated to figure out how to get rid of pigeons.

  • Anti-Bird Spikes

Spikes

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Nobody likes to rest in uncomfortable places. The same is true for pigeons. So if you want to know how to get rid of them, the answer is to make your yard inhospitable. One of the best ways to do so is to use anti-bird spikes or ‘spike strips.’

These are a set of attachable spikes that can be fastened to any surface. Since the pigeons will seek to avoid the spikes, they won’t land on them.

That is how they can prevent pigeons from perching or nesting in areas near your home or work, like roofs or windows. Thus, this method will still rid you of an unwanted pest without harming them outright.

  • Parallel Wires

Wires

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When discussing how to get rid of pigeons, parallel wires come up as the most effective method. It involves installing parallel wires that run across a structure. The wires will act as a kind of barrier, which will prevent pigeons from landing and nesting.

Therefore, you’ll once again be able to get rid of the problem without spilling any blood or potentially breaking the law.

  • Bird Netting

Netting

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Anyone wondering how to get rid of pigeons should check out bird netting. While a giant net hanging on your window doesn’t look aesthetically pleasing, it’s very effective. The mesh structure acts as a barrier between the pigeons and possible perching areas.

Plus, if you’re concerned with how the net looks, you can always decorate it in some creative way to spice up its look.

  • Bird Gels

Gel

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If you’ve ever caught rats, then you’re likely familiar with this trapping method. Bird gels are a form of sticky trap or sticky gel. They’re essentially bird repellent that uses a chemical that creates a translucent barrier across structures.

This barrier causes the pigeon’s feet to become stuck to the surface. While you might think this will hurt the bird, don’t worry.

With a bit of wiggling, the pigeon will be able to free itself. However, seeing how unpleasant that experience was, they likely would not want to repeat it. Thus, they’ll try to avoid landing on any areas that have bird gels. Therefore, if you’re wondering how to get rid of pigeons in the most humane way, go with bird gels.

  • Decoy Kites

Kites

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If you can’t afford the natural way to rid your property of pigeons, go for a knock-off. For example, you can wave a kite-shaped decoy with a falcon image plastered on it. From a distance, the pigeons will mistake it for an actual falcon and avoid landing in a certain area. It’s a fun, yet harmless way to keep them away.

However, kites may not be the best solution. The pigeons can potentially miss the decoy and land anyways, seeing as their eyesight isn’t exactly flawless.

  • Lasers

Lasers

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Lasers don’t just work on cats and dogs. They can be powerful anti-pigeon weapons too. But while our canine and feline companions find them fascinating, birds might be less enthusiastic about them. The persistent piercing light can blind the pigeons, which can cause them to crash while flying.

Unfortunately, much like the previous entry, this may not be the best method to get rid of pigeons for good. That is because these birds can easily grow accustomed to the light show and learn to avoid it when coming to land.

tiny white bugs
Animals, Life Tips

Pest Control 101: Getting Rid of Tiny White Bugs

Are you a neat freak à la Monica from Friends? Even if a little bit of dust here and there doesn’t bother you, we bet it will from now on. Namely, what you think is dust might be tiny white bugs getting all comfortable on your surfaces.

Odds are, even the thought of it has made you feel uneasy. For that reason, we have prepared for you a brief guide to these dust-like insect species. Read on to find out what they are and how you should best deal with them.

What Are the Tiny White Bugs That Resemble Dust?

Before you find out how to get rid of these minute organisms, you need to consider the nature of each of the five main white bug species.

1. Dust Mites

Dust Mites

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If you’ve ever tried a Kirby or any other more potent hoover, you know how dirty your place can get. Even if you tidy up regularly, this vacuum cleaner can leave you dumbfounded at the number of tiny dirt particles it manages to collect.

Chances are, the whole thing instantly grosses you out, and you end up feeling like you’re living in a stall. But we’re all in the same boat here, mind you.

It’s not that we’re untidy — it’s just that dust mites find shelter inside our mattresses, upholstery, curtains, and carpets. For instance, a typical bed mattress can have around one hundred thousand to one million dust mites.

To make matters even worse, these microscopic insects feed on your dead cells. They also absorb moisture from the air, which is why you’re more likely to find them in high-humidity areas.

But the truth is, these tiny white bugs aren’t there to hurt you. Thus, they won’t bite you nor harm you directly — they are far too small to do that. However, an abundance of them can cause you to have an allergic reaction.

Their droppings can trigger your immune system’s response and leave you sneezing, coughing, or even dealing with asthma attacks.

2. Mold Mites

Mold Mites

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Let’s face it — mold is yucky in and of itself. Imagining these tiny fungi growing on your pipes, windows, or walls might be giving you the chills. You can expect mold forming in areas with high humidity, and you’re probably already used to getting rid of it. But what about mold mites — what are they, and do all moist areas have them?

Mold mites are tiny white bugs feeding on fungi and yeast that you can find in soil or inside your home. Using more proper terms, these guys aren’t insects but arachnids, like ticks or spiders.

Mold mites are almost transparent organisms whose size rarely crosses 0.012 inches, making them invisible to the naked eye. In most cases, you’ll be able to spot only a discolored mass forming on mold.

However, these mites might also create brown or gray areas near your food. Dead and alive mites, their droppings, tiny food particles, and your dead cells make up this dust called biomass.

Another thing to look for is visible individual mites scurrying all over your surfaces. Such a sight may indicate there’s a mold mite infestation nearby, which you’ll have to deal with as soon as possible.

3. Woolly Aphids

Woolly Aphids

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Have you ever seen one of those fluffy white masses forming on trees, looking like fungi? If so, it probably hasn’t even occurred to you that they are, in fact, insects. At a brief sight of such a formation, you might have mistaken it for white tree sap or leftover animal hair. But it turns out to be a heap of tiny white bugs called woolly aphids.

These guys dwell on tree barks and twigs where they feed on sap, producing a white waxy substance. As their name suggests, woolly aphids are fluffy and easy to spot as they’re always in large groups.

They also breed quickly, reproducing by parthenogenesis. What this means is that female woolly aphids can lay eggs without being fertilized.

Thanks to the fast reproduction of these bugs, they can cause an infestation in no time. You can usually find woolly aphids on hawthorn or crabapples in springtime.

That’s when they’re most active, but even then, they don’t pose a serious threat to the tree they live on. Still, they can cause premature leaf drop, curled or yellowing leaves, and slow plant growth.

4. Mealybugs

Mealybugs

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If you’re looking at a white formation on a plant, woolly aphids might not be the ones to blame. In this case, the true culprits will probably be tiny white bugs known as mealybugs. The two species often get mixed up thanks to their similar appearances and habitats. Like woolly aphids, mealybugs are white, fluffy, and reside on plants.

So, how can you differentiate between mealybugs and woolly aphids? The main difference between the two is that they attack different plants or different plant parts.

Unlike their lookalikes, mealybugs usually dwell on plant joints or where leaves meet stems. You can also often spot individual mealybugs scurrying around on a plant, which is rarely the case with woolly aphids.

When it comes to a mealybug infestation, bear in mind that it can happen to indoor species like your houseplants. They will pierce through their host’s leaves and stems, sucking the sap from the plant.

As a result, the leaves on the host plant can turn yellow, causing it to weaken. In more extreme cases and when left untreated, mealybugs can eventually also kill their hosts.

5. Whiteflies

Whiteflies

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Much like their cousins, the tiny white bugs called whiteflies can attack your houseplants. They also have distinguishing mouthpieces which they use to suck the host plant’s sap.

As a result, they produce a sticky white substance known as honeydew. And, as you can see, these guys aren’t proper flies, being more related to aphids and mealybugs.

But as opposed to aphids, whiteflies do require a bit higher temperatures. Because of that, they’re more likely to be found on indoor or greenhouse plants. Most commonly, you’ll be able to spot them on the backside of leaves, living in groups. Individual whiteflies, however, might be imperceptible, ranging from 0.06 to 0.01 inches in size.

Like aphids and mealybugs, they can cause damage to the host plant. By draining all its juices, they make the plant’s leaves dry and yellow. Whiteflies can also slow down their host plant’s growth and make it less fruitful.

What’s more, whiteflies are famous for transmitting plant viruses, and the plant hosting these bugs becomes more prone to illness in general.

How to Get Rid of These Tiny White Bugs?

Now that you’ve seen what these little guys are capable of, let’s take a look at how you can deal with them.

1. Getting Rid of Dust Mites

Mites

You already know just how much dust mites love humid places. So, the first step in getting rid of them could be getting a dehumidifier or an air conditioner. By doing this, not only will you make the place inconvenient for current dust mites, but you’ll also prevent potential future infestation.

Another good idea could be changing old carpets and curtains and replacing them with easy-to-clean synthetic materials.

Speaking of which, your number one ally in getting rid of dust mites would be regular and thorough cleaning. Wash your blankets and bedding in hot water or freeze them to make the conditions unfavorable for these parasites. You can also vacuum your mattresses using a HEPA filter hoover and cover them in dust-proof materials.

2. Getting Rid of Mold Mites

soda

Because these guys can’t do without fungi, you might want to eliminate the mold first. You can do this using hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, or chlorine bleach. Whichever solution you opt for, remember to leave it over the mold for some time before rinsing it. And, to prevent it from forming again in the future, use a dehumidifier.

The same cleaning substances can also help you kill mold mites themselves. These arachnids won’t be able to survive baking soda, borax, and bleach. The same goes for vinegar and lemon, whose acidity is highly effective for getting rid of mites.

3. Getting Rid of Woolly Aphids

soap

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You already know that woolly aphids don’t pose a severe threat to your plants. For that reason, deciding to do nothing about the woolly aphid infestation would also be fine. What’s more, these guys already have their natural enemies like ladybugs, lacewings, and hoverflies.

But if you want to prevent a woolly aphid infestation on your plants, you can use insecticidal soap to treat the infected area. In more critical situations, you can also resort to harsher chemicals like acephate.

4. Getting Rid of Mealybugs

If you’ve noticed mealybugs on some of your houseplants, you need to separate the infected plants from the healthy ones. By doing this, you’ll make sure these insects don’t spread, and you’ll be able to control the situation more easily.

Then, you can use pesticides to get rid of all the visible mealybugs. But note that these guys are resistant to chemical pesticides, so be sure to use organic ones.

Another way to deal with them is to soak cotton pads with alcohol and clean the affected leaves. Using cotton swabs dipped in alcohol will prove an even more thorough procedure. With the help of them, you’ll be able to clean less reachable places.

5. Getting Rid of Whiteflies

When it comes to a whitefly infestation, there’s also no need to resort to pesticides. Instead, you can use a few simple home remedies to get rid of the stubborn whiteflies. For instance, a regular handheld vacuum cleaner could do wonders. It will help you remove both the adult individuals and their larvae.

You can also use diluted liquid dish soap to clean the affected leaves. This method will effectively rid your plant of whiteflies without harming it. An alternative would be neem oil, which works as a natural pesticide. In the worst-case scenario, you might need to remove the diseased leaves.

how to get rid of pantry moths
Animals, Life Tips

How to Get Rid of Pantry Moths: 6 Safe Ideas

Pantry moths are considered to be one of the most common pests found in kitchens and (of course) pantries. These insects aren’t poisonous, however, they will eat anything they come across. So if you’re currently dealing with an infestation, this article will teach you how to get rid of pantry moths.

What Are Pantry Moths?

Pantry Moths

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Before you read about how to get rid of pantry moths, it’s important to learn a bit about these pests.

Pantry moths, also known as P. Inerpentella are flying insects that feed on dry foods. These insects are also called Indianmeal moths, grain moths, flour moths, and weevil moths.

The size of a pantry moth can vary, however, they are typically very small. Adult moths grow up to 3/8 inches in length, with their wingspan being from 1/2 to 3/4 inches. Thanks to their size, it’s quite easy to overlook these insects until you have a full-blown infestation on your hands.

Pantry moths can be found all across the U.S. and are easy to identify. Adult moths have bronze wings with or without a pattern (for example, a black horizontal line). Their colors can vary, from light to dark brown.

Are Pantry Moths Harmful?

Harmful

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Pantry moths are not harmful to people. However, these insects feed on basically any type of dry food. With that in mind, your pantry is the first place they will infest, since that’s where people tend to store dried goods such as raw and processed grains, pasta, cereal, dog food, cat food, etc.

Also, contrary to what you may think, having pantry moths isn’t a sign of poor housekeeping. You can keep your pantry as clean as a whistle, and still have an infestation.

What’s more, most infestations occur within commercial food processing facilities. Then, when you open your food, the moths will eventually fly out and move into your home.

Worst of all, one pantry moth can lay an average of 300 eggs. However, it’s not uncommon for them to lay up to 500 eggs at a time. Once they lay their eggs, it will take up to 18 days for them to hatch. In some cases, the eggs will hatch all at once, but it’s possible for them to hatch in intervals as well.

Once hatched, you’ll have hundreds of white caterpillar larvae in your pantry. These are typically up to 1/2 inches long. While moth eggs are difficult to detect, the larvae are hard to miss considering they bear a strong resemblance to maggots.

The larvae will spin webs and consume your dry food during the course of several weeks before they form pupae. The pupae then hatch into adult moths. This process usually takes up to 10 months.

Why Are They Infesting Your Pantry?

Pantry

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Pantry moths can enter your home in a variety of different ways. For example, they can simply fly in through an open door or window. In some cases, pantry moths will make their way through openings around your vents, cables that run through your walls, and plumbing lines.

But even if you’re careful to shut all your windows and doors, and you made sure to plug up any holes in your walls, there’s still a good chance that these pantry moths can stow away inside packaged food.

The problem is that once a pantry moth makes its way into your home unnoticed, there’s a good chance you’ll soon have a full-blown infestation on your hands.

A pantry moth only has one mission: to find an area with plenty of food. Once it does, it can safely lay its eggs.

Why Do They Keep Coming Back?

Back

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Pantry moths keep coming back into your home for one simple reason: you have plenty of open food lying around. If you’re not careful to keep everything in air-tight containers, or you regularly leave pet food out, then it’s no wonder pantry moths are turning your pantry into their home.

What’s more, if you’re not careful to check your food once you bring it home from the store, there’s always a chance that a moth or two could be hiding inside your food.

So ultimately, if you want to keep the moths away, you will need to start inspecting your food more thoroughly.

How to Get Rid of Pantry Moths: 6 Ways

Get Rid of

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Namely, dealing with a pantry moth infestation isn’t difficult. However, it will involve a lot of work on your part. So without further ado, here’s how to get rid of pantry moths.

1. Clean Your Pantry Regularly

Cleaning your pantry once a week is a good way to prevent a moth infestation. However, you should be thorough when cleaning, making sure to vacuum every nook and cranny in your pantry.

Furthermore, you should make sure to use a safe cleaning liquid when you wipe down your counters. For extra protection, there are a few natural moth repellents you can place inside your pantry.

2. Inspect Your Dried Goods

The next tip for how to get rid of pantry moths involves thoroughly inspecting your food. This means opening and checking every dry food item.

Overall, you will need to look for moth larvae in your food, and on the food packaging itself. Also, check for messy webs, since these will belong to moths (spiders make neat webs).

Keep in mind that moths love to infest all of your grain-based products such as pasta, flour, and cereal, so check those first. Then, move on to nuts and sweets.

Once you’re done inspecting these products, you can move on to canned products and spice jars. For unopened cans and jars, you will only need to check the packaging for moth larvae.

Equally important, if you keep any pet food in your pantry, make sure to check it as well.

3. Discard Your Dried Foods

Dried Foods

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Whatever food you find that has moths or larvae, you will need to throw away. However, it’s important that you place these items in an outdoor trash can. If you throw them away in your kitchen trash, all your hard work will have been for nothing.

If you have some unopened nuts or grains that you would like to keep, but you’re afraid they may be infested, place them in the freezer for a few weeks. This will kill any moths or larvae that may be lurking inside.

Once you’ve dealt with the infested products, you will need to completely empty out your pantry. Make sure you pull out all of your shelf liners to give them a good wash. Vacuum the corners of your shelves, as well as the shelf brackets, undersides, hardware.

Also, don’t forget to vacuum the baseboards, walls, floor, trim, ceiling, and even your pantry door.

Then, you will need to use something strong to clean the pantry. Keep in mind that you won’t be allowed to use any pesticides to get rid of these pests, considering they’re located around your food products.

Instead, you should make a safe, homemade spray. You will need:

• A spray bottle

• Some water

• White vinegar

• Essential oils (peppermint, eucalyptus, and cedarwood)

Mix equal parts vinegar and water, and pour the mixture into your spray bottle. Add approximately 5 drops of peppermint, 15 drops of eucalyptus, and 10 drops of cedarwood essential oil.

Give the mixture a good shake, and then spray the solution onto all the surfaces in your pantry, giving them a thorough wipe-down.

The main thing to remember is that you will need to clean every area from top to bottom before you even consider putting all your items back in place.

4. Restock Your Dried Foods

Only when you’re 100% certain that you’ve gotten rid of your moth infestation can you start to restock your pantry. The best thing to do is to leave it bare for a day or two just to see if any moths appear again. If they do, you will need to give your pantry another scrub-down.

But, even before you begin the restocking process, you should first check all your products. As mentioned, it’s quite common for moths to enter your food while it’s being packed. So, when you gather all your products, make sure to open them and check for any moths and larvae. If you do find any, discard the infested items.

5. Freeze Your Dried Goods

One scary thing about math larvae is that they can eat through paper and plastic. That means that any food packed in paper or plastic containers is up for grabs. So what can you do?
Your best option is to freeze your dried goods. These include:

• Flour

• Cereal

• Nuts

• Seeds

• Bulk grains

• Dried fruit

• Crackers

• Chips

• Baking soda

• Baking powder

• Sugar

• Pet food

Basically, anything that doesn’t come in a can or jar should be frozen.

6. Seal Any Gaps in Your Wall

Make sure to seal any cracks in your walls or even the smallest of openings. Moths are incredibly small, so it’s easy for them to enter through tiny spaces.

Check the space between your cupboards and walls and behind your appliances. If you find any cracks, seal them with caulk.

Pantry moths are pretty annoying when they show up in your home. They’re difficult to spot because they’re so small, and once they start to multiply you’ll wonder how in the world could this have happened to you. But luckily, there are effective ways to get rid of them, and keep them out of your pantry for good!


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