Dirty Jobs (2005) s01e08 Episode Script

Vexcon

1 My name is Mike rowe, and this is my job.
I explore the country looking for people who aren't afraid to get dirty You're gonna get a little taste of what it's like to be a septic tank technician.
Hardworking men and women who earn an honest living doing the kinds of jobs that make civilized life possible for the rest of us.
Now, get ready to get dirty.
Captions by vitac captions paid for by discovery communications, inc.
Coming up on "dirty jobs," I meet the crabby critters of chesapeake bay.
Ah, ah! Then i master a timeless profession right out of the old west.
Oh [bleep.]
[Bleep.]
And later I got roaches in the bad place.
The battle of the bugs begins.
Oh, my god! Dirty job but someone's gotta do it oh oh oh it's a dirty job but someone's gotta do it if you haven't already heard, fishing for Alaskan king crab on the icy waters of the frigid Bering sea is the most dangerous job in the world.
50-foot swells, 80-knot winds, and 800-pound crab pots sliding across icy decks is a recipe for disaster.
For that reason, you will not find me fishing for crab in Alaska.
You'll find me here, on the relatively calm waters of the choptank river, just off Maryland's chesapeake bay.
Out there, the crabs are smaller and in the air [sniffs.]
The smell of chicken.
Well, welcome aboard the valmarjon.
This is a classic Maryland crab boat, and this is captain bill James.
He's a classic Maryland crabber.
Good morning, captain.
How are you? Wonderful.
Is this a beautiful day to go crabbing, or what? This is a beautiful day.
Is this the best way to fish for crabs, on a boat like this? Well, using this particular rig, it is.
There's other ways of catching them, but they're all expensive, and you've got to put out a lot of money.
Which brings us back to that smell of chicken I mentioned earlier.
It comes from the chicken necks that bill uses to bait his long lines.
This is a relatively inexpensive way to catch crabs.
So what we're looking at here is the neck of a chicken.
Right.
Is this one? That's a half a neck.
That's half a neck.
So each chicken neck gives you two baits.
Right.
The crab can play along with this, and he thinks he's carrying this chicken with him.
Oh, I get it.
It kind of fools him.
We're playing a little fooling game here.
If you pull it nice and slow and easy, he'll hang right onto that.
Now, it doesn't occur to the crab that the chicken Being a land-based animal Has no business at the bottom of the river.
No, he's never seen a chicken.
[ Laughing .]
His brain's too small to get his head around all that.
Right.
All right.
The crab will eat anything.
Near about.
This is a chock.
A chock, all right.
Okay.
We're gonna put that in there like that and set that right down there like that.
Okay, here's our other secret weapon.
A net? A scoop? What do you call it? A dip net.
A dip net.
Got her? Got it.
Oh, there you got one.
Look at that.
Look at that.
Is he big enough? Ah, ah! They bite, now! You think? You were watching his mouth, and he bit you with his foot, didn't it? Yeah, he did.
Look at that guy.
And he's all cranky.
Huh? We got big plans for you, amigo.
Got him.
Hello, my friend.
I have somebody that I want to introduce you to.
In a perfect world, there'd be a crab on the end of every one of these chicken necks.
And in that perfect world, I wouldn't have to lean over the side of this boat with a heavy dip net getting drenched from the icy rain.
I believe I'm soaking wet.
But this isn't a perfect world.
And despite our tasty chicken necks, we didn't pull in many customers.
Well, captain, we're freezing cold, soaking wet, and headed home with five crabs.
A bad day.
A bad day.
A bad day.
Yeah, a bad day for us, and the crabs probably aren't too thrilled, either.
Luckily, the j.
M.
Clayton company doesn't depend on just us for the crab it processes.
Fishermen from all over the chesapeake bay bring their catches here.
Well, this is the sorting table.
This is Clay, and this is his father, Jack.
Why do I have the feeling things are about to get a little hectic? Well, we're sorting crabs and breaking claws off.
The job here, basically, is to break their claws? Break their claws off.
We're using them for fish bait, and we're gonna cook the crabs and pick those later.
If they grab you, they only hang on a little while.
Yeah.
Well, it's the last thing he'll ever grab.
[ Laughs .]
Okay! [ Laughter .]
He wants a piece of you, I think.
There you go.
I can't blame him.
One way that you can pick a crab up and it won't bite you is grab that back fin at the knuckle.
And no matter what he does, he can't reach you.
Can you eat them raw, like Sushi? Being crabs are scavengers and actually They're harvested in warm months, I don't think that'd be a good idea.
Crabs are full of bacteria.
It's really important when you cook a crab to make sure that you get a good, thorough cook.
Our crabs are going to get a good, thorough cook.
Those would be the steamers, I suppose? They are the steamers.
We have two of them, and we put two of these cooking baskets in each one.
Let's see.
It's gonna swing a little towards you.
There you go.
Okay.
Okay, just pull it over far enough to get it centered over the center of the cooker.
Right.
Just right, just right, and we'll turn this so this ring will fall toward us.
It'll be easier to hook when they're done.
Okay, pull that down.
All right.
Throw your wing nut up there.
Jack: Get them on there nice and snug, Mike.
That's right.
The machines cook with high-pressure steam.
Once pressure has built to 15 pounds per square inch in the cooking chamber and the temperature inside is 250 degrees, a timer is activated to make sure the crabs cook for 20 minutes.
[ Bell ringing .]
Okay, well, that means the crabs are done.
Now, stand back Because that's hot.
No kidding! That's hot.
Oh, those crabs are done.
They are cooked.
So now, look.
Be careful.
Good job.
Reach across there.
Sometimes that steam will come up on you.
Let it down plenty far so you can just kind of throw the hook out there and latch that bail.
Good job! Okay, and what you want to do is raise up far enough so we can just go ahead and take it over there toward the cooked area.
Right there, perfect.
Good? Just right, just right.
After they're taken out of the steamers, the crabs have to be refrigerated.
This will the take the steam off of them in a hurry.
And that's what we want to do.
We want to stop them from cooking.
And this will make it happen.
Good enough! Okay.
Coming up, some yucky crab leftovers that just might make it to your table.
What's it taste like? I've never really tasted it.
No, thanks.
Then, a blacksmith sure does take a lot of crap.
That's just blatant upstaging.
And later, the good guys wear black And the villain is vermin.
Here at the j.
M.
Clayton company, we just boiled 800 pounds of Maryland blue crab that are now ready to be shelled and put into the plastic tubs you see in the supermarket.
The people that do that are here at the shelling and packing room.
This job definitely requires a hands-on approach, and the sign above makes it clear what the priority is.
And this is where I met sissy.
When it comes to shelling crabs, they don't get any better or faster, as I was about to find out.
How do you learn how to do this? Watching other people.
My grandmother has been working here for 80 years.
Yeah.
Yes.
My aunt, right there, has been working here 54 years.
Hi, there.
I'm Mike.
How are you? Oh, fine.
What's your name? Nicey.
We got nicey and we got sissy.
That's ducky.
Been at this a while, have you? Yes.
24 years.
24 years in a row? Yes.
Good grief, woman, that's gold-watch country right there.
It should be.
It should be.
Like that, so When you trim it up You cut down like this.
And on this side, if you go up to that black line, then your lump should just roll right out.
Oh, look at that! So you shouldn't have no problem.
Okay, I think I've got this down.
How about a race? I won.
[ Laughs .]
I'm sorry.
When you buy a pound of j.
M.
Clayton jumbo-lump crab meat, you get your money's worth.
This is where they make sure you do.
Right on the money.
So we've caught them, cleaned them, steamed them, picked them, and weighed them.
Now they're going to be packed and shipped around the country and all over the world to crab lovers everywhere.
But what about the rest of the crab, the stuff that didn't make it in here? To you and me, what's left on the tables of the shelling room looks like garbage But not at j.
M.
Clayton.
Here, they use the whole crab, every last bit.
Oh, god, look at that! Man: Well, that's bader meat.
"Bader meat"? Bader meat.
People use it for flavoring for anything from crab soup to crab cakes, and they probably call it "Maryland style.
" Come on! No kidding.
The stuff I just pulled off the table is run through this thing, and that's what comes out.
That's it.
This is edible?! Oh, yeah.
Of course, we pasteurize it first.
It's actually not bad.
What's it taste like? I've never really tasted it.
No, thanks.
It tastes like crab.
What about the shells? Compost.
It's fertilizer.
So people buy this to put in their garden? That's right.
Incredible.
And just like that, a bag of bader meat Made from genuine Maryland blue crab Coming soon to a restaurant near you.
Today, I braved freezing rain and pinching claws.
Now it was finally time to savour the fruits of my labor.
This little baggie will go to the market, this little baggie will go to the garden, and this little platter Thank you Will go straight down my well-muscled throat.
Here's to the Maryland blue crab Callinectes sapidus, the beautiful swimmer In all its many forms.
The stuffed mushroom, the stuffed shrimp, the stuffed potato skin, the crab balls, the crab dip, and, of course, the pièce de résistance, the crab-cake platter.
Mmm! Part of the shell.
Part of the shell! [ Foghorn blows .]
[ Birds chirping .]
[ Neighing .]
Mark hammer is a farrier, or a blacksmith Or both, maybe? Both, both.
Either way, he makes horseshoes, and he does it out here in his backyard.
Is this your Is this a blacksmith's shop? Is it a smithy? What do you call this? Well, yeah, it's a blacksmith's shop.
What's the actual difference between a farrier and a blacksmith? Well, in olden times, the blacksmith actually was the farrier because the blacksmith is the king of all trades.
That no other trade could be done without the blacksmith making the tools.
So the blacksmith had the ability to work the steel and the iron, so he could make the shoes.
He ended up the farrier in the town, too.
So 300, 400 years ago, you would have been the most important guy in this whole area.
Today, you're just a guy who I have to ask "what's the difference between a blacksmith and a farrier?" To.
You'd be amazed how many of us there are out there.
There's just a huge number of people that have a forge and an anvil and beat on steel.
I know I have one, and it's been so long since I've brought my anvil out that I thought it might be fun here to rehone my skills.
[ Laughs .]
Well, good.
We're gonna give it a try.
You got a forge, as well? Yes, I do.
And you've got some raw steel? Yes, I do.
And you've got some horses? Yes, I do.
Let's go.
This is my anvil.
That's a good-looking anvil.
I've seen a few in my day.
How much does that thing weigh? That one's 156 pounds.
Solid anvil.
Now, we're gonna light the forge.
By the time the steel comes out, which will be real quick, it'll be about 1,800 degrees.
Just real simple where you just turn on a gas valve.
When the steel turns red-hot, the shaping process is ready to begin.
All right.
Here's your hammer.
Right.
Right, right.
Now, bring it up right there.
Okay, now hit right in the middle.
Oh, you really got to lean into it.
Yes, you do.
Around like so.
Oh, jeez! Molten-hot metal, blasts of volcanic heat, and the repetitive pounding of a 10-pound hammer It's fun to be a farrier.
Like I said, the two align.
Hit off.
Now, what you want to do is flatten it out.
Well, it's not perfect, but it's a shoe.
I mean, you can see a horseshoe there.
But you know what? It's upside down.
There we go.
Now the luck doesn't run out.
Coming up, down on the farm, it's the hottest style of footwear.
But some say it stinks.
That is a very unique smell.
Okay, time to see if the shoe fits.
What's the first stop? We're gonna head right across the valley to a farm.
Earlier this morning, farrier Mark hammer showed me how to make horseshoes.
Now it was time to try them out.
The first thing we're gonna do is get the truck set up.
You literally have to have a shop in the back of your truck.
Yeah.
It's pretty much the same stuff that we had at the blacksmith shop.
The first thing we're gonna do is pull the old shoes off, and I'm gonna show you how to do the first one.
Okay.
Who is this horse, by the way? This horse is named Mitch.
He is a show jumper.
The first thing I'm gonna do is pick the foot up.
It looks like he handed it to you.
Well, they're pretty well-trained.
I mean, this horse has been shod every five weeks for year after year after year.
On the front foot, you pass the hoof between your legs, and you hold onto it by squeezing your legs together.
Okay? Then, these are the pull-offs.
But we're just gonna pry it loose.
Now, is his hoof basically like a giant toenail? Yes.
And we actually have almost the same anatomy as a horse does.
We have the same joints, the same bones everything.
And our toenail is exactly like their hoof.
Not all comparisons are to scale.
Well, that's true.
Okay.
So we've got that shoe off.
This is a hoof knife, and I'll start prepping this foot.
But what I'm taking off right now is called "sole.
" You're taking off the sole of his foot? Well, yeah, and That's different from the sole on our feet.
Right, right.
And he can't feel this, believe me.
He's totally oblivious to what I'm doing.
I look at shoeing a horse as like me going to get my hair cut.
It doesn't hurt, but there's someplace else I'd rather be.
It's not the most comfortable thing in the world, and, you know, it's just not my favorite thing to do.
When was the last time you had a haircut? Well, when my beard grows long enough.
This is That's a piece of the sole.
Yeah.
Huh? And it's not the best-smelling stuff, either.
No, it really isn't.
No.
In fact, I'm glad you pointed that out because for another awful moment there I thought Well, I didn't know what to think.
There are a lot of smells in here right now vying for my attention, but it turns out a horse's hoof stinks.
Well, you know, they basically stand in urine and manure all day long.
Of course they do.
You know you're a farrier when you wash your hands before you go to the bathroom.
[ Laughs .]
And then this is called a hoof nipper, and it's just basically a great big Toenail clipper.
Look at that! And this is the part that takes years and years to get right.
Because if you do it wrong It throws the horse all off.
And that's the hoof wall.
They went around barefoot for centuries.
How'd they manage? Well, in a horse's natural environment, his feet wear off at the exact same rate that they grow.
So and they're Also, we ask a horse to do many different things than what a horse naturally does.
You know, a horse in his natural environment is running around in grassland eating grass.
They're not made to carry a rider's weight.
They're not asked to jump fences.
They're not asked to ride down an asphalt road all day or over rock or whatever.
[ Neighing .]
Finally, it was time for me to stop horsing around and get down to it Or under it.
You need to squeeze underneath him.
No, no.
Just in.
Not down, just in.
With this foot? There you go.
Well, but you'll see My ass is hanging out.
I'm gonna fall on it.
How do you you can't.
That doesn't seem possible.
Put it through here.
Okay, right there.
And just bring it in, so But you're all crooked! How do you do that? It's just you just do it.
Gralike this.
Ils right.
Each one, and get a good grip on it.
Spin down with it and pull them off.
There you go.
Now just that bit.
Yeah.
[ Grunts .]
There you go.
Okay.
So just do that to the other five.
Hold on a sec.
Are you this can't be right.
I do five horses a day like this every day.
It's just real simple.
I mean, you just No, I'm telling you.
You've got, like, a trick pelvis or something.
That's not how god made us, Mark.
So, see how easy that was? Yeah, yeah.
It was just a snap.
Now it was time to get the horseshoes ready for a process known as hot-fitting.
We're gonna put them on the horse right now, and we're gonna burn them onto the foot.
Get out of here.
Nope.
The metal shoe is heated up to over 300 degrees and applied to the horse's hoof.
And there's that great aroma again.
That is a very unique smell.
I smelled this on you early this morning.
I knew it was something.
It's the sizzle that really gets me.
[ Coughs .]
What's the purpose of doing this? Well, the clips which are these little protrusions that come off this side of the hoof wall Help stabilize the shoe.
And you can see right here on the foot exactly where that clip I made a space for it.
I actually burnt a little hole for it to fit into.
Now, you see, the nail comes out right there.
Oh, no wonder they're so hard to pull out.
But this has been done for centuries.
Mm-hmm.
Actually, the romans more than 2,000 years ago were the first persons, the first people to put iron shoes on a horse and attach it with nails.
And then this is the clincher.
That's the clincher.
So I've made a nice, neat little clinch.
I've bent the end of the nail over.
And what's a pedicure or a manicure like without a little bit of nail Polish? And this is a sealant, actually, to seal the foot back up.
Hard to believe that didn't hurt.
No, not a thing.
Now what? We got other horses to do.
Let's do them! Now that I've mastered horseshoeing 101, it's time for me to put my talents to the test.
So who do we have here? This is sky.
No, no.
Her who's that? Well, this is sky's human, Susan.
And we're gonna put the shoes that we made this morning in the shop on the front feet of sky.
The shoe I made.
Yes, well, you made one.
I made one.
Yes, that's true.
And you did help me a fair amount with mine.
Oh, sky.
Susan, what are you feeding this animal? [ Susan laughs .]
[ Grunts .]
Sky certainly does get his fiber.
Couldn't you put him to sleep to do this? Well, sometimes we actually get the veterinarians involved and drug horses.
You mean the ones that are really jumpy and wild? Well, not so much that.
In my See, now, I'm gonna get.
No, see, that's just blatant upstaging.
You just move out of the way.
It must be nice to go through life like that Just, "ah! I'm gonna go ahead and crap.
" Well, you know, I have that affect on women, so That's quite a That's quite an effect.
A horse craps how many times a day on average, what, four or five? Oh, probably more than that.
I don't know exactly, but a lot.
I mean the odds of it happening now so soon after this and that.
Oh, well, it could happen again.
Horses do have a tendency that when you're working on their back end, they like to do it.
I swear, I think she leans on me because she knows she can.
Well, another thing is that if you lean against a horse, they lean back.
If you don't lean on them, they won't lean on you.
Well, I'm not trying to lean on her.
I'm just trying to keep us both off the ground.
It was time to fire up the forge and hot-fit the back shoes, but the hazards of this job don't always come from an impatient mare.
Note to self Don't let too much gas build up in the forge before igniting.
Melted my contacts.
You got a little bit singed on your eyebrow.
Oh.
That was painful, but not as painful as plucking.
Nail in the grooves.
I also learned that when it comes to trying on shoes, a 3-year-old horse is about as patient as a 3-year-old child and a little more dangerous.
What's happening is you're pulling her off.
She must hate that.
I would hate that.
They don't particularly like that.
Thank you, sky.
You were fantastic.
Man, those shoes look good.
Until they step in the manure for the first time.
It turns out shoes really do make the horse.
Yes, they do.
Thank you, Mark.
All in all It's been an enjoyable day.
Well, except for the humiliation, the pain, the regret.
The bald jokes.
Those were I'm sorry about those.
Clearly, I wasn't ready for the big leagues, so I decided to start small.
It's really very simple.
This shoe goes on your back hoof.
I put it on with this hammer.
I've been trained.
I know what I'm doing, and this is about trust.
You trust me.
Not now.
You that hurts.
You trust me.
I trust you.
That's a lot of pain, all right? I ow, ow, ow! What what is with Even the little ones hate me.
Coming up, I join a band of extreme exterminators waging a holy war on vexation.
We absolutely wipe anything out that we're up against.
[ Birds chirping .]
A new day has dawned in shreveport, Louisiana.
And I've joined forces with a rolling convoy of exterminators that have committed their lives to the eradication of pestilence.
A plague is upon the land.
Rats, rodents, cockroaches, and vermin have invaded the countryside.
Fortunately, a small army of crusaders has assembled to do battle.
Bill bretherton, his wife-to-be, Mary, his cousin, bump.
They ride around in black trucks, they dress in black, and they they kill vermin, is that correct? Absolutely.
All vexations.
"Vexcon," that's what it says.
What's it mean? Well, "vexcon" means the study of annoying, pestilent things.
And our religious philosophy is gather knowledge.
It helps us fight our battles better.
And there is no vexation that's too great for us.
It can be from a cockroach to Illuminata, so it doesn't matter to us We'll get it.
That's a lot of fancy foreign language there, bill.
But, if i'm following you right, your philosophy has the cockroaches as linchpins.
That's true.
We have biblical plagues every day.
This ain't an end-times scenario for me.
It's every day.
It's happening right now.
Every day for us.
These are the end days? It seems that way.
So, unlike the average exterminator, you've adopted a much more holistic approach, and you're approaching the problem from a slightly higher plane.
Absolutely.
We look at it at a much higher plane.
We look at the spiritual significance of everything.
Well, the problem at hand is not so much spiritual, but one of rodent proportions.
And tell me about the house behind us.
Well, the house behind us has been having some trouble with rodents.
The main reason for that is they used to have about 300 chickens and cocks in that area back there, and the rodent population got pretty high because of the feed back there.
Now, when the rodent population got high, the snake population got high here, too.
So, even though the chickens are gone, the rodents and the snakes still remain.
So we've got to get some rodents out of the attic up here.
There's a bunch of squirrels up there.
Well, I'm here to help.
What's the first step? All right, well, why don't me and you go ahead and check on those traps I've set and see what type of kill ratio we got.
And, bump, if you and Mary could head back to the truck, get the equipment, and start on that squirrel problem we got over there by the chimney.
They go that way.
We go this way? "Bump," huh? I gotta get me a nickname.
Oh, yeah, there's some organizational issues here.
This is Uh A big reason why they were having a rodent problem is all this clutter.
The other reason is they store the horse feed back here in these big drums.
And that created one heck of a rodent problem in here.
The lady, before she called us, she'd put a bunch of rat poison out herself, which we discourage it because she's got a lot of dogs running around here.
And there's always a threat of secondary poisoning.
Lithis is, um ce, oh! Yeah, this mouse right here was killed by the poisoning of the homeowner.
Now, if a dog came back and ate this, we would get secondary poisoning.
So we only use traps around here.
So that's really important to know.
If you're gonna put out poison, that's not a pleasant way to die.
It's a painful death.
That's why we don't use this method.
It's not humane for us, so we use the traps.
And it's instant and more humane.
This feed area Oh, here we go.
We got one right here.
Wow! That's a big one.
Oh, yeah.
When I was out here the other day, I could see that the rats were kind of hopping up level-to-level, getting into the feed trough over there.
So we went ahead and set up here.
And, as you can see, we got a Norway rat.
It's a good size.
That's a half-pounder.
Oh, it's a big one.
Well, you're right.
You know what? That probably was a very quick way to go.
I wonder what his last thought was? "Oh, what's in here? Look, free food.
Oh [bleep.]
" pbht! And these things, they urinate nonstop.
They can't control their bladder, so they're sprinkling all the time.
So when they jump in there, they're sprinkling on that.
And then when they go to feed the oats to the horse, they're taking in the rat urine immediately.
That can make them sick.
Yeah, so it's I thought I knew a lot about rats, but I didn't know they just They're incontinent.
They're just running around just peeing indiscriminately, Willy-nilly.
Absolutely, absolutely.
So the moral of the story is "a," don't have rats.
"B," avoid them by getting rid of the clutter.
And, "c," don't leave big, giant open food.
That's what it looks like.
Bill: She's over here putting out some mothballs.
The active ingredient is napthalene.
Mothballs like the stuff that's still in my mother's closet? Yeah, yeah.
Napthalene is a really good chemistry that's been on the market for 50 years.
It's safe enough to use around the fish pond.
There's very few things that we can use to keep the snakes out and not kill and harm the fish because fish are so sensitive.
So Mary's having to place the mothballs up underneath the deck there to try to flush them out.
If there's anything under there, over the next hour or so, the snakes will start coming out of there.
So the mothballs won't kill the snake.
No, it's just a repellent.
So, what's going on on the side of the house now? Um Over here, bump is getting this set up.
We need to install this one-way access tube up over that hole there.
That's where the squirrels and rats had chewed an entry there.
We presecured the fascia board up there where it left one alleyway out for the squirrels.
So I think we're gonna let you get to work up there and see what you can do.
A squirrel who's in the attic, he can get out through here.
He can fit through there.
He can fit out here this way, but he can't fit back in.
There you go.
Yeah, all right.
What the heck's going on here? I don't know.
A tornado? Golly! I think we've angered the gods.
No kidding! I don't think they like the one-way.
That's wild.
Holy crap! Maybe there's something to this whole "end of days" thing you've been talking about, after all.
Yeah.
It looks like it's today.
Coming up I figure there's a 6-foot snake up here with us.
It's possible.
Today, I'm somewhere outside of shreveport, Louisiana, where some dirty little critters have snuck into the attic of this house.
And some eccentric exterminators are about to evict them.
The ascension.
Ah.
The blessed ascension.
All right, here we are.
We set some rat traps up here because we've been having some rat trouble.
I'm gonna go ahead and take a look around, see what's going on, see if I need to reset any of them, see if we caught anything.
Oh, man, look at this.
Holy crap! Look at the size of that thing.
That thing's huge.
Can I touch it? Yeah.
Between the 2x4 and the wire there It got stuck in there.
When the snakes are trying to peel their skins off, they wedge it in between things to try to loosen it, and that's why we find it hanging on the rafters.
That's extremely common in Louisiana when we come up into these attics.
So you find snakeskins up here all the time.
That is a snakeskin for a chicken snake, is what that is.
A chicken snake? A pretty big one, too.
Well, I'm no expert, but as I look at this next to me, I figure there's a 6-foot snake up here with us right now.
It's possible.
We'll look around.
Well, his skin sure as heck is here, and I'm sure the rest of him must be around somewhere.
Yeah, but like I said, it's common in Louisiana.
Well, here's a trap that I set that had been sprung.
But it looks like they stole my bait, snapped the trap.
That's a pretty smart rat.
Oh, yeah.
They can take the bait without setting the trap? Uh, yes.
Is there a smart way and a stupid way to set a rat trap? A lot of people will, like, set it in a spot like that.
That's incorrect.
Rats ain't gonna run around right here.
What they do is they get up into areas like right over here.
You see tright there? Ping I do, yeah.
So we know they're moving in this area right here, so the proper setting for one of these would be up against a surface like so.
And then when the rats are moving around, they move like this.
And they would hit that trigger pan even if there's no bait on it.
Why does a rat stay so close to the side? Because their vision is so poor.
They can't see very well.
Their whiskers are really long, so when they're running along a wall, they can feel the wall without even touching it.
So when I set this here, I've got a burrow over there with the rat running right across here.
So when it comes out of that burrow, it's just gonna hit that trigger pan, and bam we got it.
That's enough pounds per square inch to break your finger, without a doubt.
It snaps a rat's neck instantly.
See what it does to my pen.
That's been my finger a few times.
18 years I've had my finger in that trap many times, and I've fractured it and broke it several times, too.
Ooh, got one over here.
Look at him! That's a big one, too.
It's a Norway, again.
Well, I'll tell you I mean, honestly I mean, it's hot up here, and it's kind of miserable work.
But, you know, a couple of dead rats is not as bad as what I was expecting.
Oh, I ain't done with you yet.
Riding with the vexcon crew in their black trucks, I discovered they could really shake up a neighborhood.
[ Dog barking .]
[ Meows .]
My, my, bill, this is Uh It's a beauty.
Bill: Yeah, we got quite a German cockroach problem in there, they tell us.
What is it about the German cockroaches we should know about before we go in there? Well, that's the one that lives with people mostly.
They get in the cabinets, furniture, carpeting, ceilings, wall voids.
We're gonna see thousands in there.
So do we go right in with the gear? Let's do a survey first, make sure there's no animals or anything in there that might be affected by the toxic effects of the pesticide we'll be putting out.
Aside from the roaches.
Aside from the roaches, yeah.
Because we do want to affect the roaches.
Yeah, we just want the roaches.
Hello, how are you? We need to take a look around real quick and make sure we get all the other animals out of here, non-target pests.
"Non-target pests," right, right.
So what do you see, bill? Well, we're gonna have to get the birds out of here.
We got some of the target pests we're gonna be looking at.
You can see them running around there.
Oh, my! See them? They're in these cabinets real bad right in here.
See this one here? Oh! Yeah, okay, those would be the target pests.
That's target pests right there.
Well, we're gonna cause some chaos in here.
Rowe: Is that an answering machine? Yeah, it's an answering machine.
This is the fecal deposits from the German roaches.
The reason why they're attracted to that area is most insects are highly attracted to the electromagnetic currents off of electricity.
And here, if you bang it, you can see them just coming out of there.
See the droppings and stuff.
I wonder if they left a message.
This is a typical affliction right here.
It's like a plague.
Oh, yeah! It's vexations.
I mean, that's why we're vexcon, you know? They just seem to be, I mean, utterly everywhere.
They are everywhere.
Coming up, the battle begins.
Oh! Oh, my god! A little south of shreveport, a home has been overrun by an infestation of biblical proportions.
Okay, those would be the target pests.
Bill: That's target pests right there.
Luckily, exterminator bill bretherton really knows his stuff.
You have all kinds of insect activity and animal activity that's dictated by the stars and by nature.
So unless you understand what nature's operations are, you can't understand what the bugs and the animals are doing.
So when you understand nature, then you can really follow the natural processes of the insects and the animal, and then you know better how to prepare against them, fight against them.
Ah! The tools of the trade.
Oh, yeah! All right, Mike, I'm gonna go ahead and hand you this.
This is pyrethrin.
It's oil extracted from the crushed flowers of chrysanthemum plants.
This is a very specific chrysanthemum from Africa.
And pyrethrin alone will not kill the insects.
It has to be combined with piperonyl butoxide, which is oil extracted from the sesame seed roots of that sesame seed plant.
Are you kidding me? No, no! This sounds like some sort of new age deli Chrysanthemums and sesame seeds.
Are we gonna make a sandwich or kill roaches? We're gonna kill some roaches.
The next thing we're gonna do is go around with this bait gun and put abamectin out.
Now, abamectin is a natural-growing fungus that when the insects eat this, they can't get the nutrients from their food, and they kind of die from starvation.
So when we go in there, we'll just kind of get in the cabinets and fire off a few rounds.
It shoots a little projectile, kind of like a gun.
Well, that's on account of it is a gun, I suppose.
Oh, yeah.
Abumectamine? Abamectin.
Ooh, nice! Like that? I like that.
You're a natural.
Bad day to be a roach, huh, Mary? Yes, roach armageddon is about to commence.
Bring it on.
I'm going with the flushing first to start to draw them out so we can kind of get an idea of the numbers we're dealing with here.
This is the pyrethrin.
It's just called p.
I.
P.
i.
, right.
Well, I got some p.
I.
Here, too.
Oh, yeah, look down in there.
[ Coughs .]
[ Clears throat .]
Shall we see what's behind door number one? It's gonna be pretty bad.
Oh, man, let's see what we've got up top.
Oh! Oh, my god! This is you know, look, I've been in sewers.
I've seen some bad things.
But in a house? This is just wrong! Ugh! You hear them knocking around? Yeah, listen to that.
Eat this.
Oh! We got to get the pro in here.
It's out of control! Got them.
Thank you.
You've got my back.
[ Laughs .]
I got roaches in the bad place.
Uh-oh! Rowe: I don't know about this chemical.
It makes me drool, and it makes my nose run.
Oh, yeah.
It's doing the same thing to them.
Ah, get off me.
A little bit more.
The flushing that we did the first time, it has no residual.
That's why it was okay to kind of hit around the kitchen area and the bathrooms and stuff because there's no residual.
The white light breaks pyrethrin down in just a few seconds, so we've got to get a residual down.
That's where the abamectin comes in.
Look out, roaches.
Now, how long does this take to kill them? This is fast, about two or three days.
I know it sounds slow, but it's way more effective than the pyrethrin that we were just using.
There.
Their prayers have been answered.
So the pyrethrin and the abamectin seem to be working their magic.
Yeah.
Did good.
We got a high kill on that.
Yeah, we've got thousands of dead and dying roaches within mere feet of us.
How do we go about disposing of the corpses? The best thing to handle this is vacuum it up with a hepa vac.
If the people will pay us, we can do cleanup for them.
So we're not gonna do all that? Not today.
We just did the kill on this one, and they're gonna do their own cleanup.
That's about the best news I've heard in the last two hours.
I hear you.
So it sounds like the linchpin to this whole interconnected world you're talking about is the roach.
Yeah, the roach is something else because of their ability to go into any environment and adjust.
I mean, those pesticides we're using If we pounded this house for 10 years straight with these pesticides, they'd build up a resistance to it.
So, in the end, no matter how sophisticated the technology becomes, there's really no substitute for a girl like Mary to pick the doggone things out of your head.
No.
No, Mary's the ultimate killer.
Nothing seems to get immune to Mary.
God knows I'm not.
[ Laughs .]
[ Dog barking .]
Think you have a dirty job? Click on discovery.
Com/dirtyjobs and tell us about it.
You never know where I'll show up next.
Honey, grab me a pen.
Sure, dear.
Where where is it? It's in the top drawer by the answering machine.
Oh, yeah, right in here.
[ Gasps .]
Aah! [ Laughs .]
[ Gags .]
Okay, shall we?