We have all heard about the massive mouse plagues in Western NSW and South West Queensland – but now is the time when all commensal (pest) rodents come into our homes and work-places looking for warmth, food and harbourage.
The single most important factor in limiting rodent invasions is cleanliness! Encourage good housekeeping practices by your customer. They should clean up any food spills as soon as possible. Stored food should be kept in sealed containers. Floors and kitchen worktops need to be cleaned thoroughly and on a regular basis. Garbage should be kept in closed containers and taken out nightly.
The first, and probably most important step in effective rodent control is a thorough inspection – know exactly where the infestation is living, travelling, eating and breeding – and understand which species of rodent is the problem. There are three recognised pest species here in Australia being the House Mouse (Mus musculus) the Roof or Black Rat (Rattus rattus) and the Norway or Brown Rat (Rattus norvegicus).
Depending on the location and severity of the infestation that you are dealing with consider block baits, soft baits, traps and glueboards (if relevant in your state) or a mixture of these for an effective IPM program.
Always remember the six key steps to effective rodent control:
- Eliminate the rodents’ food, water and harbourage, wherever possible.
- Select the right product for the job in hand. Discuss the customers choices and requirements.
- Place the chosen control method where the rodents are actively traveling
- Put out enough product to control the population. Check and replace products regularly. Under-baiting is asking for trouble.
- Read, understand and work by the label recommendations – the label is the law!
- In this day and age – use bait stations (preferably lockable) wherever possible – whether using baits, traps or glueboards. It looks professional, protects the environment and satisfies the customer.
If you haven’t already tried them, consider Rudduck’s remarkable rodent control range – Alpha Rapid for very quick control of mouse populations and Rodent Paste as a palatable and easy to use alternative to blocks or soft baits.