How To Kill Common Household Pests With Beer

Lots of beer at Oktoberfest, but do you see any pests?Beer, we like. Pests, not so much. However, the pests we dislike also love beer, and so we can use this to our advantage. We’ve compiled a list of some of the beer-baiting methods out there to conicide with that wonderful time of year that tourists and locals alike adore: Oktoberfest.

Now, there’s no need to waste any of your finest ales here – which may relieve some of you. Any stale beer you have lying around or even the cheapest kind you can find will do. It turns out household pests really aren’t that fussy.

Before we get into that, though, it’s worth pointing out these probably aren’t the best solutions for a serious pest infestation (leave that to the professionals), but to get rid of a few uninvited household guests they might be worth a shot. That said, let’s jump in.

Beer vs. Slugs

SlugSlugs are amongst the messiest of pests, and they also tend to feast on garden plants. So a swift solution to dispense with these slimy creatures can be most welcome.

This is one of the more simple solutions.

Beer bowl by chizang on Flickr

Simply place a shallow dish of beer in a strategic place to divert the slugs from their normal route. They will be naturally attracted to this giant pool of ale overnight, and sparing you the gory details – they will no longer be a problem in the morning.

Beer vs. Cockroaches

german cockroachCockroaches are another breed of unwelcome house guest that will happily turn up and drink your beer or breed and multiply in your kitchen.

You will need an empty jam jar with a rounded inside lip. Place a small piece of bread soaked in beer at the bottom of the jar. Then coat the inner lip with Vaseline or whatever sticky lip gloss you happen to have to hand, vaseline works best though apparently. The idea is that the cockroaches get attracted to the beer, feast on it, and then the combination of the Vaseline and rounded lip makes it impossible for them to escape. Mwah hahaha (evil laugh!).

Empty jar by madichan on Flickr

A strange suggestions is simply to leave out a beer-soaked cloth. You’ll find the cockroaches there in the morning, and when they try to scarper, they’ll stagger about drunkenly, making them easy prey! Granted it is also likely to attract flies and such like, so in retrospect I’m not sure this is the best suggestion.

Beer vs. Mosquitoes

Aedes mosquitoAllegedly, drinking beer makes humans more attractive to mosquitoes, almost like a reverse beer-goggle effect. Whether this is true or not, mosquitoes can definitely be quite the irritation at any summer gathering.

An elegant (well some call it elegant, I say modern art-ish) solution is to hang beer or other glass bottles from a tree, presumably from a previous celebration* with just a little beer in each. This should help keep the mosquitoes away from your food and your guests – the ones you invited that is!

Bottle tree by poppy2323 on Flickr

The same trap can work equally well with other stinging insects like bees, wasps and hornets. Place the beer bottles (or cans) at least 4 metres away from you and your guests. Be sure not to let any children or pets go near the beer, in case they disturb any possibly drunk, probably angry or even aggressive insects.

*As you may have guessed, it’s not 100% necessary to hang the bottles in trees, but it does look quite cool in a modern art-ish kind of way.

Beer vs. Moths

oak processionary mothThis is possibly one of the more unusual baits. It’s certainly inventive, and apparently even used by moth hunters, who don’t intend to kill the moths but to use them for their studies.

Mix stale beer with sugar, molasses, black treacle and rum. Rum? Yes, rum! I never said this was a cheap solution to a pest problem. Some variations include adding black kiwis or black bananas. When using fruit, you can leave it in a jar until it ferments (begins to smell) and turns sticky. Without the fruit, you simply boil down the mixture until it gets sticky. Either method then suggests you paint the sticky mixture on some wood (like a tree or a fencepost) and wait to see how many moths you attract.

Moths on sticky band trap – William A Carothers on

WARNING: If you live in certain parts of the world, this will also attract bears! So if it fails you will still have a moth problem, but if it works you could have a bear problem. Hmmm.

So that’s it for beer and pests. Let us know if you have any success. And if you have any tricks for getting rid of pests yourself, be sure to include them below as well.

  1. keith

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