When winter ends and spring begins, many pests come out of their hibernation (or diapause, if they happen to be insects) and others venture out of their hiding places to take advantage of the warm temperatures. For many, spring is their mating season, and a time for seeking out new homes and food sources. Preparing your building for pests that are common nuisances in spring is significant in keeping them out. Winter and its cold temperatures, snow, and ice can cause exterior damage that allows pests to get in easily. It was estimated that pest problems cost businesses $19.5 billion in lost revenue in 2014. Investing now could save money, frustration, and your business’s reputation later on. There are all kinds of pests that can cause problems, but in spring, there are some that are more commonly found than others.
Ants are the number-one nuisance pests in the United States. Carpenter ants are found inside and outside, while pavement ants are mostly found outdoors. Both are looking for food and places to establish their colonies. In this pursuit, they can be problematic to businesses and building managers. When ants get in, they can easily find their way into food supplies and contaminate them. Ants will eat just about anything, but they have a strong preference for sweet foods and liquids. Also, they are capable of carrying bacteria and diseases, such as Salmonella, which they spread through biting.
Did You Know? In 2011, 88% of the office buildings in the United States that made calls for pest treatments had ant problems.
Flies become a common nuisance as the weather warms up. Once they are in, the population can be difficult to control. Flies breed quickly, one female can lay up to 1,000 eggs in her life, and flies take about 10 days to become full-grown adults. Once at their full size, flies are able to spread disease by carrying bacteria like E. coli and Shigella on their legs and bodies, frequently landing on any available space (such as food and shared surfaces/objects), and leaving behind sickness-causing microorganisms. Flies can costs businesses their profits, customers, and health inspection points.
Did You Know? A survey of restaurant visitors found that 81% of them would stop going to a restaurant if they found a pest near their food.
Depending on the type and region, many cockroaches will hibernate during the winter due to their inability to tolerate cold, and then resume their activity in spring. They use the warm weather to explore for new food sources, places to call home, and breed. While they do not have a specific mating season, roaches are more active in warmer months as they thrive in heat and humidity. This makes a spring an excellent time to treat and prevent cockroach infestations. Aside from damage to reputation and the cost of removing them from your business, cockroaches can trigger asthma and allergies in staff and regular guests. According to the World Health Organization, “like houseflies, they play a supplementary role in the spread of some diseases.”
Did You Know? Cockroaches have been proven to carry 10 different infections, along with Staphylococcus and E. coli bacteria.
No matter what kind, pests always have a negative impact on businesses, their employees, and customers. Businesses in five different countries were surveyed in 2014, and 78% of them expressed concern for the impact an infestation could have on their morale, profits, and reputations. Integrated pest management (IPM) is recommended for keeping buildings pest-free, as IPM programs are tailored for the area, building, and potential/active problems. There are measures that can be taken by facility mangers and staff, such as cleaning food and spills, removing clutter, keeping windows and screens intact, and ensuring good landscaping practices. However, no one should try to take on pest control. Leave that part to us, the experts at Citron Hygiene!