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Household Pests cont.

  1. Fleas
  2. Wasps
  3. Bedbugs
  4. Bird Lice
  5. Rats and Mice
  6. For information on Cockroaches, Ants, Spiders, Silverfish and Carpet Beetles
  7. For information on termites.


Fleas are impossible to live with. Their bites can cause severe irritation and their role in disease transmission is well documented. Historically the bubonic plague has claimed millions of lives and is transferred from rats to humans by the oriental rat flea. They are also likely to play some part in the transmission of dog tape worm. When conditions favour flea development, ie warm humid weather, flea numbers can reach 'plague' proportions and inhabit all areas of a dwelling including interior floors and carpet, subfloor areas, pet bedding, back yard soil and lawn areas, concrete areas such as the garage. Adult fleas lay their eggs on the host animal which in domestic situations is generally the cat or dog. These then usually fall off and hatch within 2-14 days as larvae which then pupate and hatch as an adult in 7-14 days. In less favourable conditions the pupal stage may last for up to a year and hatch only when the presence of a host animal is detected. This is most evident when a house is vacant for a period of time and fleas start appearing soon after it is occupied. The management of fleas involves both the home owner and the professional pest manager. The best long term protection methods are with the use of systemic insecticides, which are available from the vet and are usually ingested or applied topically on the back of the neck. When treatment is required the thorough application of an insecticide and insect growth regulator mixture needs to applied. Areas treated would include interior flooring, subfloor and garden soil areas, lawn areas, garage and pet bedding areas. The thorough vacuuming of the premises prior to treatment can be advantageous as well as the application of a 'wetting agent' to the insecticide mixture. It is also important that all pet mammals are treated by the home owner or the local vet at the same time as treatment to the premises. For effective flea management contact Novopest today.


The Paper Nest wasp can often be found building its nests just about any where around the exterior of our buildings and yards. They inflict a very painful sting and are aggressive when disturbed or confronted. Their honeycombed nests can be found on eves, guttering, downpipes, out buildings, air conditioning units and garden foliage. People have sometimes suffered multiple stings after disturbing a nest whilst trimming garden hedges and shrubs. Another wasp that inflicts a painful sting is the European Wasp and may inflict multiple stings when disturbed. Apart from the painful stings that wasps inflict, people have been known to die as a result of allergic reaction to wasp sting. Their status as a pest therefore is highly considered and measures to reduce their activity around the house should be maintained. For effective management of wasps, contact Novopest today


Although bed bugs do not seem to be involved with any serious disease transmission, their bites at night can prove very irritating, even unbearable at times. They have piercing and sucking mouthparts and are blood suckers at all stages of their development. The bed bug is of wide distribution throughout the world and is typically associated with the sleeping quarters of hotels, motels, hostels and dormitory type facilities. As they are transported around in furniture, luggage, clothes etc, they can establish themselves in domestic situations after people have returned from holidays or business trips. Bed bugs spend most of their time hiding in places such as behind skirting boards and architraves, cracks and crevices in furniture, behind wallpaper and in bedding. They then leave their harbourage areas in the early hours of the morning in search of the host animal, which primarily is humans, however other animals such as cats and dogs can serve for feeding. Prior to implementing any treatment measures a thorough inspection to the premises must first be carried out. Areas inspected should include furniture, wall linings, skirtings, architraves, curtains, light fittings, picture frames and railings, shelves, appliances and bedding. Once harbourage areas are identified the careful application of a residual insecticide can then be applied. For effective management of bedbugs, contact Novopest today.

Bird Lice

Bird lice, as they are commonly known, are actually mites. The Starling mite being the most often encountered pest species. These minute animals live on host birds such as Starlings, Indian mynas and sparrows, which will then build their nests in areas like roof voids, under eves and other sheltered areas around our homes. When the birds leave the nest, which is usually in the summer months, the remaining mites then go in search of other host animals. This is when home occupants may then notice the presence of the mites, either by a crawling sensation on the skin or the presence of skin irritation. They are sometimes visible in large numbers. Treatment of bird mites involves the application of an insecticide dust to the roof void area or other nesting site and the removal of nesting material. The use of a non-residual insecticide can then be used to treat interior areas where mites are present, usually in the form of a 'space spray' application. For effective management of bird lice contact Novopest today.

Rats and Mice

The presence of rats and mice in buildings and dwellings is usually regarded as undesirable as they are responsible for food spoilage and contamination, physical damage as well as the transmission of disease.
The transmission of disease alone is reason enough to justify sound management procedures. Among the many diseases transmitted to humans the most insidious and widespread is that of food poisoning organisms such as Salmonella bacteria. The constant gnawing of rodents can cause damage to such things as doors, skirting boards, furniture, upholstery, books and other materials. The gnawing of wiring can be the cause of telecommunication breakdowns as well as costly and sometimes deadly fires. Rats and mice are also responsible for huge losses of food in store either by directly eating the food or through contamination with urine, droppings and hair. When it comes to management of rodents the most permanent is to make alterations to the building so as to impede their entry. Such measures as blocking weep holes and gaps around external penetrations, fitting metal plates to the bottoms of doors, installing vermin wire or mortar to gaps in roof and the removing of tree branches from close proximity to the dwelling. When rodent infestations occur there are a number of treatment options available for their management. The use of physical traps like the original snap trap mechanism is still available, as are glue boards and specially designed boxes which allow the rodents to enter but don't let them out. Chemical bait formulations are also available and come in the form of edible grains, pellets, blocks, gels and liquids. The use of tracking powders may also be employed. These are placed where rodents are known to be tracking and are subsequently consumed by the rodent whilst grooming. For effective management of rats and mice, contact Novopest today