“I just don’t understand,” Debra moans over the phone “I clean my kitchen every day. Why are those disgusting creatures still here?”
We’ve all heard it before; clients misunderstanding the way that certain pests infest their homes, offices, and buildings. Pest controllers repeat certain phrases over and over again, like lousy breakup lines, but instead of the tried and tested “it’s not you, it’s me,” in this situation, it’s often “it’s not you, it’s the pests.” And for the fourth time that week, you have to explain to Debra that no matter how often she douses her kitchen benches and floors with heavy duty bleach, those cockroaches are going to keep coming back. It’s cockroach season, after all, and there’s a shifty stain on her kitchen ceiling that suggests there’s a leak in the roof providing a cockroach colony with a delightfully damp playground. So you give the well-rehearsed speech once again about cockroaches being attracted to moisture. And you quietly think about all the things you would tell your clients if there was a way to reach everyone with a few essential pointers about the mysteries of your job. The following is an open letter to homeowners worldwide that are seeking pest control services.
Some bugs are bloody persistent!
No matter how often you clean your home, some pests may creep in anyway. Ensuring that leftover food or dirty dishes aren’t left lying around, installing fly screens and regularly cleaning are definitely noble pursuits, that won’t necessarily deter all critters. While most vermin are attracted to food scraps and rubbish, there are many other causes of pest infestations. For example, bed bugs like to hitch a ride on your visitor’s clothes and luggage before cozily embedding themselves in your furniture. And lice can make their way into your home in the hair of little Jimmy’s school friend. While we, as pest controllers, do everything that we can to prevent pests from coming into your house when we perform yearly sprays, we can’t act as guards at your doorway and scrutinise every visitor that steps foot inside your home.
We aren’t here to mediate a feud with your neighbour.
When you live in an apartment block, if your neighbour has a pest infestation, there’s every chance that you may inherit that infestation. Because you’re living in such close quarters, it’s easy for vermin to travel from apartment to apartment through wall cavities. The best way to treat the infestation is for all apartments around the original infestation to be sprayed. But there’s little that we can do if your neighbours refuse treatment. As much as we wish it were true, we aren’t the Men in Black and don’t have the badass vibes of Will Smith, destined to convince people to do the right thing. We’ll do our best to ensure that your apartment stays pest free, but you may have to talk to Body Corporate about your neighbours.
Mixing store-bought solutions with professional treatment is a massive no-no.
Sometimes professional pest treatment fails to work because homeowners have applied cheap, store-bought pest ‘solutions’ alongside our own. Don’t spray cockroach aerosols near dusted, sprayed or baited areas! It completely stuffs up the effectiveness of the solution. Sometimes the right treatment takes a little time. You just have to trust us. We got this!
The “I have to see it to believe it” mantra is not in our vocabulary.
Just because you can’t see a pest infestation, doesn’t mean it’s not there. So many bugs are nocturnal and like to hide in the cracks and crevices of your walls and ceilings. Termites, in particular, often go undetected until it’s too late. So it pays to be aware of the types of pests that frequent your area and know how to look for signs of them. If you can hear a clicking noise in your walls at night, get on the phone to your local pest exterminator as that could be a colony of termites chewing away at your home’s internal structure. Who you gonna call? Pest Busters!
We aren’t here to poison your dog and defile your tidy floors.
Sometimes when we enter people’s homes, they look at us like we’re unsung heroes here to save the day, which we love. Other times we get dirty sideways glances and people hover at our backs, convinced that we’re going to ruin their clean floors or accidentally poison their dog. A little bit of trust goes a long way. Most pest controllers have been around the block a few times and know what they’re doing. Make sure you tell us if you have pets or small children, and we will explain what chemicals we intend to use and if you need to take any precautions. We won’t apply any substances that you aren’t comfortable with. Most of the time, having an honest and open discussion is the key to avoiding misunderstandings. In regards to dirtying your floors… sometimes we need to lay down dust that must not be disturbed if you want it to work, and that’s just the nature of the biz. If you wish to get rid of those nasty critters, you’ll have to curb your enthusiasm for sweeping for a few days.
Like in Charlotte’s Web, not all bugs are bad.
This is a text block. Click the edit button to change this text.We may remove pests for a living, but that doesn’t mean that we think all species of creepy crawlies are the bad guys! All you have to do is watch kids movies like Charlotte’s Web, Antz, and A Bug’s Life to see what we mean! Ok, so it would be rare to find a mouse that you like living with as much as Stuart Little, or a rat as talented as Ratatouille, but not all seemingly scary creatures are bad to have around the home. Many native spiders are harmless (just be sure to identify that they definitely aren’t the poisonous ones) and great for keeping flies off your dinner and mosquitoes from whirring about your home. One spider that gets a terrible wrap is the Huntsman because he’s a jittery fellow and is capable of popping up in unlikely places and scaring the bejesus out of you. But he’s generally non-aggressive unless provoked and even though his bite does hurt, it’s not toxic to humans. So if you find one, try not to be too alarmed. He’s probably as scared of you as you are of him! Best to just let him go about his business eating your flies and insects. Geckos are another common Queensland house guest, which are often tolerated more so than spiders because they happen to look a little cuter. They’re hungry for flies, cockroaches and crickets, so are great to have around the house. Just watch out for them hiding in your door jambs – things get a bit messy when you accidentally squish them!
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