Pest proofing: why it is critical now more than ever

Continuous maintenance and vigilance is essential if you want to prevent pests

It’s not uncommon these days for business premises to be left unoccupied. Recent events have affected the way we all work and go about our business. But while we all have to adapt our working practices, for pests it’s business as usual.

Pest activity in buildings has always been a daily problem for businesses. Continuous maintenance and vigilance are essential if you want to prevent pests from entering and any infestation must be dealt with quickly and effectively before it has a chance to spread.

While older buildings present structural and multiple entry points, new buildings – often with their open-plan layouts – can also be susceptible to pests. The costs to resolve the damage caused by infestations can be substantial because pests can:

* damage equipment, which can lead to fire, loss of vital communications or control over critical machinery;

* damage food stock, which can cause contamination and cost thousands to replace;

* spread disease that threatens staff and customers alike;

* transmit diseases via pathogens in their urine and faeces.

The pests looking to overrun your building

Food-focused businesses lose an average of eight working days a year due to rodent infestations.


Rentokil recently identified the key trends impacting businesses and pest control. Research showed that out of all the different species of pests, rats are one of the most destructive for businesses. That’s because rats are nimble and versatile and will make the most of any opportunity to enter your premises.

All rodents can climb and explore multiple levels of a building – black rats and mice in particular. They’re also adept at swimming and will take advantage of damaged pipework by negotiating sewers and drain systems. Both species love to gnaw and won’t stop until the gap is large enough for entry.

Once inside, rats and mice can damage building structures, equipment, and stock. They breed quickly, leading to infestations from just one pair of rodents, and they can spread diseases such as Salmonellosis, rat-bite fever, Weil’s disease with symptoms ranging from mild to severe.


If birds had written a book on the ways in which they can cause a nuisance, it would be longer than the Lords of the Rings trilogy. Not only can they be noisy, messy and unhygienic – pecking and fouling stock, equipment, ledges, and surfaces – but they can also give customers, staff and the general public a bad impression of your business.

Feral pigeons, for instance, carry parasitic pests such as ticks, fleas, and bird mites. They live on the birds and on their droppings but then look for new hosts when the pigeons abandon their nests. Pigeons and gulls can make your staff and customers ill from the serious pathogens they carry.

Flying insects (flies and wasps)

Out of all the common pests that affect businesses across the globe, you won’t find much more troublesome than the fly. On average, businesses across the globe spend $9,033 a year on controlling fly infestations, with staff absence, revenue loss, and damaged brand reputation having the most serious ramifications for a business suffering from an infestation.

Apart from the incredible rate at which they breed (fruit flies can lay up to 500 eggs at a time that can fully develop in as little as seven days), flying insects carry pathogens that spread diseases such as cholera, E. coli and salmonellosis and they regularly move between contaminated sources and clean areas to cause cross-contamination. So, their numbers and their impact can pose health risks to staff and customers.

Wasps, meanwhile, will find sheltered areas inside your building, such as wall cavities and roof spaces. A wasp problem will be an unwanted distraction for customers and employees.

Proofing solutions to prevent pest infestations for your business

One of the best ways to prevent pest activity is to proof your building. Rentokil provides a range of proofing solutions to help protect a building from pest entry, including:

* filling small to large gaps

* protecting cable trays and pipes through floors/walls

* preventing rodent entry using mesh

* proofing doors against heavy infestation

* preventing rodents climbing

* protecting entry via loading areas and roller doors

Proofing to prevent a rodent infestation

Discovering your business has a rodent infestation can be very distressing. Proofing your business to prevent pest entry and removing easy access to food and water can make a significant difference.

Keeping staff, customers, and members of the public safe from harm while protecting your business against litigation, lost profits, and damaged reputation is vital. While there may not be rodents inside your building at the moment, Rentokil has innovative solutions to ensure things are kept that way and to provide alerts whenever pest activity threatens the surroundings of your building or property.

Rentokil AutoGate has been designed to detect rats and mice. When this happens, a barrier between the entry section of a bait box and the rodenticide behind will open. This helps to protect any harmless wildlife as the ‘smart’ gate mechanism ensures the rodenticide is only accessed by target species, namely rats.

Autogate is part of PestConnect – a network of connected devices that can detect, capture, and humanely eliminate rodent pests with innovative and highly effective traps, bait stations, and monitors. Using wireless technology, PestConnect works independently and discreetly without impacting business.

Protect your premises with bird-proofing

Bird-proofing is one of the biggest challenges a business can face. It can be particularly difficult when surfaces such as intricate facades, statues, monuments, and signage are affected. And of course, for historic and listed buildings, bird-proofing requires sensitive work.

Below are some of the discreet, effective, deterrent solutions Rentokil will implement with the minimum of fuss and disruption to your business.

* Bird Netting

* Larus Bird Wire

* Hawking

* Egg and Nest Removal Programme

* Bioacoustics Deterrent

* Bird Point System

Protect your business from flies and wasps

Rentokil has developed a range of effective and unique solutions to deal with flies and wasps nests, including:

* Lumnia Insect Light Traps – designed to effectively capture and encapsulate flying insects by using high-attraction LED lamps to attract them to the unit. Lumnia even eliminates the risk of fly fragments falling outside, thereby reducing the risk of cross-contamination.

* Fly Box – a unique fly-control unit that effectively controls the number of flies around external refuse areas of premises, before they enter the building and potentially spread disease.

* Fly screening solutions for doors and windows.

The business benefits of proofing

Pest-proofing not only prevents pests from entering your premises but can also prohibit interior pest movement. In addition to restricting movement, pest-proofing can also:

* provide continuous control

* reduce the need for pesticides

* stop infestations from neighbouring areas

* save time and money dealing with a costly infestation

Why choose Rentokil

Rentokil are the global experts in pest management, with over 90 years of experience servicing commercial customers. Our experience means that we’re best served to help your business with essential services that help protect against all pests.

We offer the most advanced range of pest control solutions and services in the industry and have a network of dedicated experts who can respond to situations quickly and consistently.


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2nd September 2020
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