Living with a pest in the house is not only a nuisance, but also a safety hazard. Animals such as snakes, possums, rats, and birds are common pests that can find entry into our homes and backyards and wreak havoc.
In the past, pest control usually involved killing as many pests as possible. These days, most pest control specialists advocate for more of an integrated approach, one that prioritises prevention. If you’ve got a pest problem on your hands, here are our best practice approaches to handling some of the most notorious Australian household pest animals.
It’s snake season here in Australia. As the sun comes out, so too do these cold-blooded creatures.
If you come across a snake in your house or backyard, the most important thing to do is to stay calm and stay still. Try not to scream or make any sudden movements, and be sure to keep a safe distance from the animal. Most importantly, do not attempt to capture or kill it. Snakes are native animals and are protected under the Wildlife Act 1975, which means that you could land yourself in some serious legal trouble if you are caught causing intentional harm to an animal protected under this act.
The good news is that snakes generally like to keep to themselves and rarely attack unprovoked. In any case, it’s good to be well-versed in what to do should you ever find a snake in your path. If you ever spot snake either in your home or in your backyard, do the following things:
- Stay still and calm;
- Back away from the snake slowly;
- Maintain a safe distance between yourself and the snake;
- Move children and pets away from the area immediately;
- If the snake is in a dangerous location, call a licensed snake handler;
- Keep your sight on the snake as you wait for the handler to arrive;
- Call 000 immediately if you or anyone else has been bitten.
To reduce the risk of running into a snake on your property, you should get rid of the various resources the animal would be looking for. Snakes are cold-blooded animals, which means that they have to regulate their body temperature either by lying in the sun to warm up or lying in the shade to cool down. As such, removing places of shelter like piles of rubble, building materials, and long grass is a good place to start. Minimising available food and water sources around the home will also help to reduce the appeal of your property and deter them from visiting.
Anyone who’s dealt with a possum problem in their home knows that possums aren’t always the loveable creatures that Mem Fox made them out to be.
Like snakes, possums are native to the land and are protected by the Wildlife Act 1975, so you’re legally prohibited from harassing or interfering with a possum in any way. The good news is that possums aren’t particularly aggressive animals and are also most active at night when everyone’s sleeping, so possum attacks are very rare. That means that it’s very possible to coexist with possums in your surrounding environment.
With that being said, a possum inhabitation in your home isn’t something you should ignore because they may, over time, cause damage to insulation, chew electrical wiring, or contaminate the area with their urine and faeces. Their characteristic midnight hissing and screeching is also a surefire way of throwing your sleep schedule way out of whack.
If there’s a possum living in your roof or walls, you should call a qualified pest control company to assess your situation. A pest management specialist will be able to identify all the possible entry points in your home. From there, they’ll lure the possum out of your home before repairing your building back to its original condition.
To reduce the future occurrence of a possum habitation, you can try taking the following measures:
- Removing food sources;
- Cutting back on branches near your roof;
- Sealing up potential entry points around your home.
Rats & Mice
A rodent infestation is a serious issue that shouldn’t ever be ignored. Rodents such as rats and mice spread diseases and contaminate food, and they can also cause lasting damage to your furniture, upholstery, doors, and electrical wiring. All in all, left untreated, they can be an expensive problem to fix.
Dealing with a rodent problem often isn’t as simple and straightforward as setting out a few traps around the house. That’s why it’s always worthwhile getting a pest control specialist to assess the situation so that you can prevent the problem from arising again in the future. At Jim’s Pest Control, our specialists can set up a guaranteed plan to manage and control rodents in your home, one that’s based on integrated and long-term pest management principles.
To reduce the presence of rats and mice around the home, try to make the following adjustments to your house:
- Sealing the bottom of exterior doors;
- Installing screens to vents, chimneys, and other entry points;
- Sealing cracks and holes on the outside of the home;
- Storing food in airtight containers;
- Disposing of rubbish at the end of each day.
Birds can become highly problematic when they decide to make their nests in human residences and buildings. Birds carry a multitude of transmissible diseases with them; in fact, studies have suggested that birds and their droppings can carry over 60 diseases! It’s safe to say that a bird infestation in the home is an issue that requires fast and immediate intervention.
Because of their ability to fly away, capturing and releasing a bird can be extremely difficult. Pest control solutions for bird infestations include proofing a building and its surrounds, applying physical deterrents, or, as a last case scenario, poisoning or shooting the bird. When it comes to birds, it’s best to leave all pest control measures to a professional who is equipped with the tools required to address the problem in a sanitary and safe way.
Like other pests, prevention is always better than cure. To deter birds from entering your home, you should endeavour to remove food sources from the house as well as water sources. A qualified pest control specialist will be able to assess your environment and make a list of suggestions for your specific scenario.
At Jim’s Termite & Pest Control, we work with homes and businesses across Australia to develop and implement effective pest management strategies that bring results. Give us a call on 131 546 or enquire online today to see how we can help you pest-proof your home.
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