At the risk of sounding a bit like a mafia don, I’m going to make you an offer that might just help you get rid of a pest. And before anyone thinks I’ve gone a bit Vito Corleone let me make it clear that I’m not talking about business partners, flatmates or even political opponents, but the sort of uninvited houseguests that come in via broken drains and cracks in walls.
Let’s face it no one wants to share their home with rats, mice, bedbugs, ants or wasps. While the thought of it is bad enough the reality is a real pain. It’s important to remember that many vermin, rats and mice in particular, carry diseases that can cause serious illnesses.
In the pantheon of pests I think it’s fair to say that rats seem to capture the public imagination. I don’t think a year goes by without stories appearing in the press about an invasion of ‘super rats’. The descriptions seem to get more and more alarming. Earlier this year I read headlines warning of two-foot long rats and even cannibal rats. After checking in with our front-line staff as to whether I needed to buy a lion to protect me I was relieved to hear that we hadn’t come across monsters like these in the borough yet, but we’re vigilant.
Seriously though, if you have a problem help is on hand. While there are, of course, many commercial companies that specialise in getting rid of pests I’d like to give a plug to the Council’s very own pest control service. Its officers have been helping residents and businesses tackle and control pests since 1963. It’s a small but very well trained team of people who can advise you on what steps to take if you have an infestation and also carry out a range of treatments to get rid of them. Last year it made over 13,000 visits to domestic and commercial premises.
You can find out more about what the team does and what treatments cost by going to www.rbkc.gov.uk/pestcontrol
It is also possible to take out a contract that provides peace of mind and cover for 12 months. This can be more cost effective than paying for individual treatment visits. You can go online to book and arrange a free appointment for an officer to visit and discuss your particular issues, be they ongoing monitoring or reactive treatments for many types of pest. Of course for those who’d prefer not to use the internet you can ring our Environmental Healthline on 020 7361 3002.
I should point out that we are not able to provide pest control services for problems caused by bees, gulls or indeed foxes on private or other land.
Of course we can all play a part in making our homes and indeed the borough less appealing to a variety of pests. Put litter, particularly food, in bins and make sure your domestic rubbish goes out on the correct day.