JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas —
The 502nd Civil Engineer Squadron Pest Management spent one sunny morning showcasing how they combat insect and animal population on Joint Base San Antonio to the 502nd Air Base Wing and JBSA senior leadership July 20, 2017.
Brig. Gen. Heather Pringle, 502nd ABW and JBSA commander, Col. Lee Flemming, 502nd ABW and JBSA vice commander, and Chief Master Sgt. Kristopher K. Berg, 502nd ABW and JBSA command chief, all had the opportunity to get their hands dirty spreading bait, inspecting a dining facility and checking traps with the pest control technicians.
“They’re controlling nature and making it a better place for all our joint base mission partners and allowing us to carry on with our missions,” said Pringle. “There are great professionals and it’s really been a great day to be able to spend with them.
Pest control technicians use a systematic approach to find long term solutions for each pest problem, like setting bait that staggers rodent and insect populations or taking proactive steps to prevent infestations in the first place.
“We use a process called integrated pest management,” said Jorge Ortiz, 502nd CES Pest Management pest control technician. “We’ll start off by doing an inspection and identifying the problem, then figuring out a way to combat the pest.”
The 502nd CES Pest Management faces everything from animals as large as feral pigs to insects as small as bed bugs with various traps, bait, and pesticides.
The pest controllers diligently close work orders as fast as they receive them and word hard to build rapport with customers as they handle their specific pest problems.
“Really that’s what it comes down to, making sure that the customer is able to work, is happy about the job that we do.” Ortiz said. “I tell the new people that come in that this job (is) 90 percent customer service, making sure that you make them feel comfortable, and 10 percent bugs.”