Mission Statement

The Soboba Tribal Environmental Department is committed to protecting, restoring, and enhancing natural resources on the Soboba Reservation for all tribal members past, present, and future.

 

What We Do

The Environmental Department works to raise awareness of all aspects of the environment. This includes solid waste issues, pollution prevention, water and air quality, conservation measures, household hazardous waste disposal, and many other areas. In addition to community outreach and education efforts such as participating in community events, the department also hosts an annual Tribal Earth Day event and community clean up days. We also conduct surface water quality testing on streams running through the reservation, collect and manage geographical data, and create programs to address environmental concerns.

An easy way to begin learning about the environment around you is to visit the United States Environmental Protection Agency website and use MyEnvironment

 

Earth Day Thanks

 

The Soboba Tribal Environmental Department would like to thank all Tribal members, residents, and colleagues for attending this year’s 13th annual Earth Day Event and making it the best yet! The Department looks forward to seeing everyone next year and look out for this year’s community cleanup this summer.

 

Spring Time Pests: An Environmentally Friendly Approach to Pest Control

Springtime can be a great time of the year but it can also be the perfect time for indoor and outdoor pest problems. The springtime is not only for people to enjoy the outdoors; it offers perfect conditions for several types of pests to start breeding and becoming a nuisance to humans and animals. Warmer weather and water availability bring an increase of mosquitos, fleas, rats, spiders, aphids, ants, termites and other pests that can create numerous problems and health hazards. Different insect pests like aphids, can easily ravage a garden and decimate fruit and vegetable gardens and large-scale agriculture. Fleas and mosquitos are not only annoying, but they can also present a significant health hazards with the spread of certain diseases that may cause serious health problems and even death.

 

 

Did you know there are over 200 different species of mosquitos found in the United States? Mosquitos are one of the most annoying and dangerous pests that emerge in the millions during the spring and summer months. Mosquitos require water to lay their eggs and can lay up to 300 eggs at a time creating huge population booms. Mosquitos can utilize the smallest source of standing water, even as small as a bottle cap with a pinch of water in it. Mosquitos and other pests like fleas are also known as vectors, typically transmitting disease through bites on humans and animals. Mosquitos are a prime example of one of the most concerning vectors, carrying and transmitting serious diseases like West Nile Virus, Zika Virus, and Malaria, making it imperative to manage pest issues.

When the bugs are out the most common form of pest control is the use of pesticides that include insecticides, fungicides, herbicides, and rodenticides. Most people turn to pesticides for the convenience and effectiveness of the product but it is important to remember that these methods can also be harmful to people and especially the environment. Pesticides can be quite harmful to all living things and often have detrimental effects to species other than their target animals. Pesticides contain toxic chemicals that range from acute symptoms like headaches and nausea to long-term effects like cancer, neurological issues, and death. Using this type of pest control can increase indirect and direct exposure between people and the toxin. Once applied, pesticide toxins can remain harmful and eventually leached in to the surrounding environment. Pesticide chemicals are easily dispersed by rain and artificial watering sources and easily contaminate the land, water, air, and plants and animals that are exposed. Water runoff from areas that have been sprayed with pesticides are a number one conduit for the spread of toxic pesticide chemicals.

The EPA has determined that the best methods for environmentally safe pest control should be approached with an integrated pest management focus. Integrated pest management (IPM) uses pest control methods that cause the least possible hazard to people, property, and the environment.  IMP begins with prevention, identification and monitoring, non-chemical methods, and then if needed chemical control with moderation and planning. So, when you’re trying to control pest problems at home consider reading the Citizen’s Guide to Pest Control and Pesticide Safety provided by the EPA to manage pests in safest way possible for your family and environment. www.epa.gov.

 

 

Here are a few tips to taking a safe and environmentally friendly approach to pest management

  1. First, identify the pest problem, like what kind of pest you are dealing with and use free resources to learn the most effective methods to control it.
  2. Decide how much pest control is necessary. Some insects are beneficial to your lawn or garden and getting rid of them may actually be more harmful.
  3. Some species of fruits and vegetable are more susceptible to pest infestation, when planting; choose ones that are harder for pests to destroy.
  4. Remove Standing Water Sources. If there are any objects or areas that collect water make sure they are dry and empty of standing water to prevent mosquitos and other pest from breeding in them.
  5. To avoid ants and other pests from entering your home make sure screen doors, windows, cracks, and any entrances into your home are sealed.
  6. Eliminate pest hiding and breeding places. Some pests live and breed in dead or disease plants, removal of these items limits pest’s abilities to survive and breed.
  7. Use Biological Controls. Some pests have natural enemies or predators that keep pest populations under control. Consider purchasing predatory insects or attracting biological controls, like birds, around your home. Ladybugs are great predators against aphids and ants and will not cause additional harm to your garden or environment.
  8. Consider using biochemical pesticides and microscopic pathogens. Biochemical pesticides include pheromones and juvenile insect hormones that can be used to lure insects into traps or depending on the hormone, may actually interfere with growth and reproductive cycles. Microscopic pathogens like fungi, bacteria, and viruses can eliminate many pests and are conveniently purchased at commercial hardware and garden stores.
  9. Use natural deterrents. Many household products can be used as a natural and safer pesticide choice. Soap sprays, garlic and chili pepper sprays can be used as an insect repellent around your home and garden.
  10. If you are using a chemical pesticide, use extreme caution when handling and use sparingly. Always read the label for toxic properties and health hazards to avoid. Avoid spraying in high run-off areas, and places where people and animal frequently reside.