This article was originally published on 16th January 2019 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
Like cockroaches, the presence of lizards in the home can make you squeamish! Fret not, for we have some potent tips for getting rid of them permanently.
This article was translated from 12 petua paling berkesan halau cicak dari rumah by Ridzwan A.Rahim.
The common house lizard (otherwise known as the cicak) is known for the problems they bring to your home. Lizard eggs and droppings not only make your home dirty, but it also carries diseases such as Salmonella. Ugh, how disgusting! Not only do lizards make your house smell, but they can also affect the health of your family and children.
Before attempting any natural or chemical remedy for your lizard problem, know that you can take preventive measures to eliminate the root cause. In this article, we share with you 12 of the most effective tips for keeping lizards away from your home, forever.
Get to know the lizard family
Before we look at these tips, let’s get to know the three most common lizard species.
Tokay Gecko or cicak tokek is a lizard species native of Southeast Asia and the Pacific Islands. Its original habitat is the tropical rainforest because they live in humid weather and climb tall trees. Tokay Gecko is known for its high price as it can be sold up to thousands of Ringgit. The enzyme from the reptile’s saliva is believed to be able to cure AIDS, cancer and Influenza H1N1. However, its medicinal properties are yet to be proven.
The wild gecko or cicak kobeng is said to be a sub-species of Chameleon. Its body is small and skinny. However, this reptile is fierce and it moves fast.
Common house lizard
These are reptiles that often roam around your house and carry diseases. If you are you a Scoliodentosaurophobic, lizards give you goosebumps and make you run miles in the opposite direction. Although it’s small in size, the presence of lizards makes you feel uneasy because the droppings are difficult to get rid off when they are dry. These lizards usually hide during the day and go out for food at night. It is also adaptable and is a predator for insects such as flies and spiders. Also, house lizards are less aggressive compared to other lizard species.
1. Do not leave food uncovered
Exposed food is a favourite of lizards and helps them breed in your home. Never leave leftover food lying around. Always clean your pots and pans after cooking. Wipe your dinner table clean and keep the lids on your rubbish bins closed. Leftover food attracts flies and ants, which indirectly attracts lizards, as well as lizards, eat insects. So, before eliminating lizards, check that your home is free of other pests.
Try these eco-friendly tips to eradicating vermin or get expert help for more serious pest problems.
Did you know: Lizards favourite food are ants, termites, cockroaches and smaller insects!
2. Seal every crack on doors, windows and walls
Lizards usually appear through cracks or crevices in windows, doors and walls. These cracks in themselves do not pose a problem, but they can serve as easy entry points for lizards. The cracks also serve as hideouts.
Seal off any existing cracks or crevices using silicone or urethane. You can seal the top and bottom of doors using weather stripping. This method also keeps other insects from entering the house. On top of that, you can install screens on parts of the house where air flows. Not only will this close off all potential entrance points for lizards, but it will also make your home neat.
3. Keep cats
Not only are cats the cutest creatures in the world, but they are also hunters by instinct. This can work in your favour to reduce the lizard population in your home. However, lizards carry parasites that are harmful to your cats known as liver flukes. These parasites can cause inflammation of the liver and potentially, death.
Instead of leaving the work of eliminating lizards to your cats, there are few natural methods you can employ using materials that are readily available around you. Most of which you already have in your kitchen.
Eggshells are a natural lizard repellent. Place these eggshells in locations around the house where lizards are often seen. Although it seems weird, there is a good reason why eggshells can be used for pest control. Eggshells contain sulphur that causes a burning sensation to the lizard’s abdomen. In addition, the smell of sulphur in eggshells is reminiscent of a bird’s beak, the lizard’s natural predator. This discourages lizards from entering an area with eggshells. Replace the eggshells every three weeks or so. You can also use quail eggs.
Shallots are an eco-friendly natural lizard repellent. Cut or grind some shallots and place them in locations where lizards have been sighted around the house. Like eggshells, the sulphur content and smell in shallots will repel lizards. An alternative would be garlic.
6. Vinegar, lemon and chilli powder
Lizards hate the smell of vinegar and lemon, while chilli powder can cause irritation to their skin, eyes and nose. Create your own vinegar, lemon and chilli powder spray to repel lizards from surfaces sprayed with this mixture. Here’s how:
- Mix black pepper and chilli powder.
- Add vinegar and water, stir thoroughly.
- Put the mixture into a spray bottle and shake well.
- Spray content onto lizard-infested surfaces.
7. Citronella spray
If you would like a nice smelling house that also acts as a lizard repellent, try using a citronella spray. Citronella (serai wangi in Malay) is a type of aromatic lemongrass. It is similar to the lemongrass you use for cooking except that it has a stronger smell and is inedible. The citronella’s strong scent is effective at repelling vermin including lizards.
If you have difficulty finding citronella spray, try actual lemongrass stalks. Research has proven lemongrass’ effectiveness as a mosquito repellent. Lizards love to eat mosquitoes, so by reducing the mosquito population, lizards will have difficulty breeding as you’ve gotten rid of their food source. Take a few stalks of lemongrass, shred them and place them around your house. Alternatively, you can use lemongrass essential oil for the same results.
9. Coffee and tobacco
If everything else fails, kill those lizards using coffee powder and loose tobacco! Here’s how:
- Mix coffee powder and loose tobacco, then shape into tiny balls.
- Take some toothpicks and stick these tiny balls on the tip.
- Place these ball-laden toothpicks around the house in places where lizards have been seen. The aroma of this mixture will attract those reptiles.
- Tobacco is poisonous to lizards and will kill them.
10. Lizard repellent spray
Lizard repellent sprays can be found at most sundry shops and supermarkets. Spray copiously into places where lizards appear often to deter them from coming. Aside from sprays, there are electronic versions of this repellent.
11. Rat glue
Create your own DIY lizard trap using rat glue. Simply take pieces of paper or boxes and apply the glue liberally onto the surface. Put these DIY traps in places where you know the lizards are known to roam. The traps can also be hung on ceilings and walls. Quickly dispose of these traps as soon as they capture a target to prevent the dead lizard stench from permeating throughout your house.
12. Mothballs (Naphtalene)
Place mothballs inside your wardrobe or cabinet. Lizards hate the smell of mothballs, which will deter them from entering those spaces. Since mothballs often come in various colours, they can be mistaken for candy. So be extra careful not to put them in places where children could reach and accidentally swallow them.
How do I clean lizard droppings?
Worry not, here’s an effective way to get rid of lizard droppings. You will need:
- 1/3 vinegar
- 1/3 water
- 1/3 dishwashing liquid
Mix these ingredients and make sure you spray the solution at lizards hiding places such as behind the frames and other hidden areas. You can also use this method to get rid of ants.
Whether through prevention, applying natural remedy ideas or using commercial products, there are many ways to rid your home of lizards. Pick the method(s) you are most comfortable with and don’t forget to share your experience with us!
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