Getting Creative With Pest Control Sticky Traps

The standard way to use a insect glue trap

The standard way to use a insect glue trap

Do you use insect glue boards aka, sticky traps? Whether you’re a professional or a DIY pest controller, I think we all do. They’re a very flexible and cheap tool that can help out in many ‘sensitive’ & or ‘tricky’ situations as well as provide a way to monitor activity.

Like anything, they can be a bit overused and just placing them willy nilly around the house oftentimes catches nothing but dust- but with some forethought and just a little bit of creativity, you can use this quiet little accessory in some surprising ways and in areas where pesticides might not be practical (or safe) to use.

For me, I use Trapper LTD’s and they come in perforated sheets of three traps per sheet. This is nice because you can split the sheet and use one, two or all three. They’re designed to simply fold up in a tent shape which is great but I thought you might like to see a few pictorial ideas of how you can expand the way you use this simple tool. Perhaps this might be helpful or it may be that you have a way in which you use them that isn’t listed. If so, we’d all be grateful to hear about it. Just leave your comment below.

One little known trick I use is to cut my boards for a custom fit into a tight or odd shaped area. By using a little soap directly on a knife or pair of scissors you can cut your trap and not have a sticky mess. Apply the soap directly to the blade and cut while the protective wax paper is still over the glue. Nothing sticks and you can have custom insect trap in minutes. See the last two pics for examples.

Have fun-catch more bugs!

Slide the tabs into the larger 'view' slot and use the excess to tuck and secure trap in otherwise difficult spots..The seam at the top of cabinets etc...

Slide the tabs into the larger ‘view’ slot and use the excess to tuck and secure trap in otherwise difficult spots..The seam at the top of cabinets etc…

Invert the sticky trap and secure the tabs. Great for under sinks around pipes or in closets or pantries for moths.

Invert the sticky trap and secure the tabs. Great for under sinks around pipes or in closets or pantries for moths.


Lure traps are expensive-save money by just purchasing the lure. Fold one sheet in tent form and place on open sheet with one tab out act as anchor point.

Lure traps are expensive-save money by just purchasing the lure. Fold one sheet in tent form and place on open sheet with one tab out act as anchor point.

Fold the flaps downward as a tent. Great to place over sink strainers on a plants soil for gnats. Here it catching gnats in an under sink food compost.

Fold the flaps downward as a tent. Great to place over sink strainers on a plants soil for gnats. Here it catching gnats in an under sink food compost.

Fold the tabs to be able to use the slim aspect of your trap  (see next photo)

Fold the tabs to be able to use the slim aspect of your trap (see next photo)

The tabs keep you from losing the sheet and you can now service the slimmest of areas such as between cabinets and walls.

The tabs keep you from losing the sheet and you can now service the slimmest of areas such as between cabinets and walls.

And don't forget the easy method of hanging your trapper with a string. Great for flying pests or spots where the folding tab trick won't work.

And don’t forget the easy method of hanging your trapper with a string. Great for flying pests or spots where the folding tab trick won’t work.

I use this trick for all sorts of tricky spots where a standard placement wont work.

I use this trick for all sorts of tricky spots where a standard placement wont work.

When a sticky trap is desirable under the sink but there's no room to put it...The possibilities are endless.

When a sticky trap is desirable under the sink but there’s no room to put it…The possibilities are endless.

About The Bug Doctor

Jerry Schappert is a certified pest control operator and Associate Certified Entomologist with over two and a half decades of experience from birds to termites and everything in between. He started as a route technician and worked his way up to commercial/national accounts representative. Always learning in his craft he is familiar with rural pest services and big city control techniques. Jerry has owned and operated a successful pest control company since 1993 in Ocala,Florida. While his knowledge and practical application has benefitted his community Jerry wanted to impart his wisdom on a broader scale to help many more. Pestcemetery.com was born from that idea in 2007 and has been well received. It is the goal of this site to inform you with his keen insights and safely guide you through your pest control treatment needs.
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  • stuto

    I like to put them in the corners inside the garage.

  • I do to but I wonder how long they last before they get covered in dust,debris and things like lizards.

  • xm41907

    Good tips. I never knew the soap on scissors trick. Thanks! Do you have a rule of thumb regarding food service locations? I do a lot of reviews, and get so sick of seeing traps just sitting on the floors, with nothing on equipment.

  • Sticky traps usually do two things in restaurants. Get wet and are no good– Act as an advertiser to (too many) passers by and the service can be viewed as lacking….especially when the health inspector see them

  • xm41907

    I agree with that, but they’re also a great way to find early infestations. I prefer to see a conservative and focused use of monitors, primarily in high infestible locations, and tucked out of the way from mops/water hoses. More often than not, they’re placed haphazardly around the floor as token evidence of service. And for the companies that barcode these things, I feel sorry for the techs that have to deal with that. Yes, I used to be in that situation. Total waste of time and effort.

  • They do clue you in for sure…. I guess to answer your question— it’s very hard to get em to stick to surfaces like stainless steel or tiles which is what is a lot of surfaces in a restaurant plus the heat and wetness. Also folding and twisting like I discuss can work but still limited. Once in awhile I’ll place a sticky (cut away the flaps) in those very small fold over plastic mice bait stations…. I bought a case of those things and realized it wasn’t a real safe mouse bait station so I made it like a roach motel of sorts. It protects somewhat from the water but it can (and I found out does ;0 ) MELT on top of dishwasher or other hot places… Might be a thought..

    When yo say “review”, do you inspect other peoples work or is this a sales call?

  • xm41907

    There are many ways to use sticky traps, and I’m always interested in hearing novel approaches.

    I’m no longer in commercial pest control. I’m a medical entomologist with the military. With my background in commercial pest control, I’m often asked to assist issues where the onsite PMP has failed to address an issue properly. This usually involves an extensive inspection(s) and report; ideally with the PMP involved as well. I also conduct regulatory IPM program reviews, but the majority of my work now involves training and assistance with arthropod-borne disease surveillance and pathogen testing.

  • I knew that word “review” was more than met the eye…. Awesome extension from the route I’d say. If I remember right you ran my old area in Baltimore…..that means there’s hope for me!! lol

    That sounds extremely interesting…

    Quick ?,, with your experience & from the commercial aspect of having to ‘inspect & treat on the fly’ (if you had to do that)–how much has that helped or hurt you with doing “extensive inspections now? The reason I ask is I often wish I had more time for inspections to not only find / solve problems but to learn why and how the problem happened and how maybe they survived my (or my techs) treatments…..

  • xm41907

    Yeah, I ran a route in Baltimore for several years. I then switched companies and worked some sensitive accounts in DC before coming on board for my current position.

    Having a background as a tech really helps me when it comes to assisting. In many instances, the PMP is under fire for not solving the problem. I can navigate easily between the two sides and figure out where the fault lies, at least in most cases. More often than not, it’s due to either a poorly trained tech, or the tech being overworked and cutting corners.

    When I’m asked to come in as a consultant, I have the luxury of conducting the inspection as I see fit and to the extend I need. It’s wonderful to be able to fully address something, provide a laundry list of recommendations, and have the clout to see them implemented (at least most of the time). My favorite is when we’re requested for the unusual situations. Trying to identify an unusual pest, or infestation. Digging into the nitty gritty is where the fun lies, and since I’m not tied to earning profit, I get to spend that much needed time.

    When I conduct “reviews” that is a regulatory situation, and everything is on the table for scrutiny. I try to be sympathetic, but I also have to be judicial in my findings.

  • Great insight–Thank you for sharing!