Pest Control: Spiders, Bird Mites & Other Crawlers
The recent media sensation about the false widow spider prompted me to write a few lines about it. They are one of twelve spiders in the South of England that can inflict a bite, and have been here for well over 100 years, so they are not new!
Nobody has ever died from being bitten, but (very rarely) serious reactions to bites can occur. For this reason, caution must be observed when there is a likelihood of any of the twelve species being present.
They are very easily mistaken for garden spiders (Orb web spiders) If you think you have one, please send me a clear picture of it for identification, and if there is need to treat the area, then this can be carried out professionally using the correct chemicals if chemicals are actually necessary.
In domestic or workplace situations
Bird mite usually appear by complete surprise in the home or work environment. Usually, this is a result of a bird nest or roosting point nearby. the mites get everywhere and will cause itching and anxiety to anyone living or working nearby. We will isolate the source and treat the area appropriately. Please call to discuss your mite problem.
In poultry housing or aviaries
The poultry red mite, Dermanyssus gallinae, is a tiny blood sucking parasite of all birds, not just poultry. They feed at night and when not feeding, live and breed in cracks and crevices. It is because poultry has a regular roosting and nesting site, often with ideal conditions, that a red mite infestation proliferates. A red mite infestation can be instigated by visiting sparrows or pigeons etc, or by the introduction of infected stock or second hand housing. Symptoms of red mite infestation can be anaemia and feather loss, poor condition and blood spots on eggs. Egg production will suffer and the birds will be stressed and vulnerable to other health problems, so it is important that red mite is controlled.
Red mite can survive for several months without a blood feed, and can live up to a year, so control measures and inspections need to be thorough and regular. Red mite treatment for chickens begins with removal of the birds and the housing thoroughly cleaned and dried prior to the area being treated with pesticide. Once dry, the chickens can be put back into the hutch and over the next few weeks, the red mite will die off. Please note that we use “Professional use only” chemicals that are not availiable unless proper safety training has been completed.
Other crawling things
Silverfish, woodlice, book lice, mites etc can sometimes cause a problem. As ever, correct identification is the key to successful treatment.
Insect samples can be properly identified, so please call to arrange this.
More exotic animals and insects do turn up from time to time and we can arrange to capture anything from spiders to large snakes, parrots to peafowl.
Unidentified bites, crawling skin sensations & mysteries
We receive regular calls from customers who are experiencing mystery bites, or feel there is some sort of insect within the house that is causing them discomfort or anxiety. Often, they have called a pest control firm to come and treat the property, but the problem persists after the chemicals have been used.
The cause of the bites or sensation MUST be identified prior to any treatment being carried out. It is against the law for a pest control technician to treat with toxic chemicals without correctly identifying the culprit.
Many things can be the cause of reactions similar to a bite, it is not limited to fleas or bed bugs. We can carry out an inspection beyond the normal checks for fleas and bed bugs. As a general rule, if the insect responsible cannot be found, it is not a job for pest control and a doctor’s opinion should be sought.