Ants form nests in gardens, under paving stones, in foundations or occasionally within buildings.
They live in a large group and search widely for food to take back to the nest.
Often enter properties looking for sweet foods in particular.
May damage food and cause a nuisance but are unlikely to carry any disease.
In the late summer winged and large females will be produced from the nest and may emerge in large numbers close to or inside property. The winged ants fly away mating on the wing and eventually settling exhausted. The males usually die quickly and a small number of mated females will survive to form new colonies.
Pre treatment advice
Everything should be moved away from skirting boards in the area that needs to be treated.
All ant powder, spray etc put down by the Householder must be removed prior to treatment.
Property does not need to be vacated after treatment - just keep away from treated areas.
Advice to customers
In the garden, ants cause no real problems and should be left alone. To prevent them coming into the home:
Ensure all holes are blocked up to stop searching ants entering the house.
Boiling water poured over the nest will kill ants near to the surface but not those deep in the nest.
Spray around edges of rooms affected using a crawling insect spray preferably a gun type aerosol. This can be sprayed around the nest opening, places where they are coming into the building or next to food sources. These can be brought from most hardware, DIY stores or garden centres.
Manufacturers instructions should be followed carefully so that no other animals or people are affected.
Gels or powders are usually taken back to the nest by the ants, killing those deep inside. More than one treatment may be needed so that growing insects are also killed.
Look for treatments that containPermetherin. This is carried back to the nest, sterilises the queen and stops the grubs developing.
Treatment may take some time to destroy the nest, so any ants outside the nest, including flying ants can be killed with a fly or insect spray or dust containingbendiocarb. This can also act as a barrier around building entrance points.
Where there are children or pets allow sprays to dry as per instructions before allowing them into treated areas.
There are various types of beetle that can be found in the home. We can arrange for the Pest Operative to visit you to identify any insect you find or samples can be brought into the Council Offices for identification.
Usually found in carpets, bedding and clothing.
Can damage carpets
Move furniture from around the edges of the room that are affected.
Clean infested area thoroughly using vacuum cleaner.
Apply residual insecticide spray.
Do not hoover for as long as possible after treatment.
Found in food stores, larders etc.
Feed on cereal products and dried food stuffs.
Can penetrate food packaging.
Birds nests and food residues should be removed.
Empty storage areas of all food contents.
Clean out cupboards thoroughly.
Check all dry food stuffs for infestation.
Apply insecticides to structures.
We would spray storage areas.
Leave room empty for minimum of 3 hours.
Feed on mould and fungi. Can be found inside where damp and slightly mouldy conditions occur i.e. damp plaster, bathrooms, under carpets.
Can also be found in lofts associated with bird nests.
Empty rooms of plants, food, fish tanks etc.
Spray with residual insecticide.
Smoke generators could also be used.
No one allowed into treated areas for minimum of 3 hours.
If outdoors, keep doors closed and remove any food i.e. food for birds etc.
If indoors can use traps with chocolate bait as interim measure. Remove any other poison before officer visits.
Tamper proof bait boxes.
Hidden bait trays.
Re-visits to check bait boxes.
Do not leave any excess food waste outside overnight.
Place all household rubbish in the dustbin and keep the lid shut.
Do not leave areas of the garden piled up with rubbish or overgrown.
Block up any holes used for services that may allow access into your property.
Ensure that rats cannot escape through old drainage connections e.g. disused toilets.
Do not throw food for birds onto the ground.
Complaints about rats or mice on premises/land
Although overgrown land and empty or derelict buildings can sometimes provide harbourage for pests such as rats and mice in the short-term, this doesn’t necessarily indicate an ongoing or long-term infestation that could be considered a public health issue. Most gardens, overgrown or not, will frequently be visited, or passed through, by rodents as they travel between feeding or nesting sites or during exploratory movements, so a sighting doesn’t necessarily indicate a local infestation.
Under the Prevention of Damage by Pest Act 1949, the owners and occupiers of land must take steps 'for the destruction of rats or mice on the land or otherwise for keeping the land free from rats and mice'. The borough council enforces this duty and may serve a notice requiring action to be taken.
If there are rats or mice living on, or resorting to, land in substantial numbers the law requires the owner/occupier of that land to take steps to eradicate them. This will usually mean obtaining a pest control treatment provided by a private company or by the borough council: treatments bought from shops or online are unlikely to be adequate and can pose risks to other animals or humans.
The legal responsibility to deal with rats/mice applies equally to all owner/occupiers, including those complaining about them on their own land, regardless of where they may be coming from.
The Pollution Control Team will therefore investigate complaints about rats or mice only where:
You can provide written evidence that you have treated your own premises/land;
Rats or mice are living on, or resorting to that land in substantial numbers – in other words, they are seen often and in large numbers;
You can provide photographic evidence of the condition of the land;
There is sufficient evidence to show that there is a significant and ongoing rodent infestation caused, or exacerbated, by the condition of the land (for example, where there is food or rotting domestic/household waste present) and where the baiting of adjacent properties or land has proved ineffective in eliminating the rodent issue; and
The above, in combination, indicate the presence of a significant public health issue.
We will not investigate complaints about rats or mice on premises/land where:
One or two rats/mice are seen briefly or passing through a garden; or
Neighbouring land is overgrown or untidy and the complainant considers that rats/mice might be present.
Complaints about rats or mice at commercial/business or food premises
The Regulation Team may investigate complaints about rats or mice on land that forms part of commercial/business or food premises only where the following information is provided in addition to the above:
Where exactly the rats/mice were seen; i.e. inside or outside the premises;
Are there any waste bins with closed lids on site?; and
Are the waste bins overflowing and is there food waste present?
How are complaints investigated?
Where we are satisfied that there is sufficient evidence of a significant and ongoing rodent infestation on the premises/land, we will visit your own premises and suspected sources of infestation in the immediate vicinity. The investigation may include visiting the area in person, taking photographic evidence and/or monitoring, for example, test-baiting; we may also be accompanied by a borough council Pest Control Officer. Where we are unable to resolve the matter informally, but are concerned that there is a significant public health issue, we may enforce the duty of owners and occupiers to keep their land free from rats and mice by serving notice(s) requiring action to be taken.
Wasp nests may be found in roof spaces, wall cavities and air grates of buildings, hanging from trees as well as underground.
Towards the end of the summer, fertile males and young queens emerge from the nest to mate. The young queens will then fly away and select a suitable site to hibernate over the winter.
As the weather becomes colder the nest dies out, but the new queens born during the summer will search for a hibernation site. In spring they will start a new nest of their own, the old nests are not returned to.
Wasp nests that are not causing a problem can be left alone.
Wasps are fairly large approx. 30mm long and have a black and yellow band across the abdomen.
We cannot treat nests that are on your neighbours property unless they ask us to.
We can only treat nests that are accessible. We cannot treat from a ladder. Ladders are for access and not a working platform. If in doubt the Pest Officer will visit.
Nests in eaves and sofits can be reached with a long pole.
We will not treat wasps in chimneys, as this is a Health and Safety risk. However, we can offer advice.
We will not treat or remove inactive nests.
We will treat nests or areas of entry, this will be assessed at the time of the visit.
Treated nest should be inactive after 1-2 days.
When dead it will turn ashy grey in colour. Where certain there is no longer any activity it can be removed by knocking with a stick into a dustbin bag.
If there is still activity in the nest after 2-3 days we will re-visit to treat free of charge
Self treatment advice
We do not recommend that anyone treat a nest their selves. However, if you choose to do so then sprays, treatments etc. can be purchased from garden centres, DIY stores etc.
Always wear protective clothing i.e. gloves etc.
Use treatment at night when wasps are likely to be inside the nest and not so active.
Follow manufacturers instructions.
Do not attempt to approach the nest after spraying.
May need more than one treatment.
Customers we offer our service to
Householders - private owned, private rented and housing association tenants.