13 September 2017

Pestwatch

Feature technical | PPC88 September 2017

Tips and tricks from the BPCA technical team to see you through the last bit of the year’s pest problems.

CLUSTER FLIES

Cluster fly

In Autumn, cluster flies (Pollina rudis) congregate in large numbers in upper rooms or roof spaces of houses to hibernate. They also commonly cluster around the edges and cracks of window frames and openings. A mass of cluster flies can have a characteristic smell. They are sluggish in flight and are a nuisance in the house. The larvae of one species are parasitic upon certain earthworms, so this species is more common in rural areas.

ACTION. Cluster flies can often most easily be removed with a vacuum cleaner. Aerosol fly killers deal with smaller numbers. Use of insecticidal fogs or smoke generators can be used to clear heavy infestations. Care should be taken to check for the presence of bats before carrying out insecticidal smoke treatments. Cluster flies usually return to the same location year after year, so communicate well with customers to explain this, and this will help to manage expectations.

RODENTS

Brown Rat petswatch

Rodents, especially rats, will be making an appearance, no doubt within the more sensitive internal areas for building owners. The onset of wetter and colder weather, coupled with the cutting of crops, will drive rats and possibly field mice to the safer, warmer and food rich internal areas of buildings and farm yards.

ACTION. Make sure you are ready to help prevent those unwanted and explosive infestations. Employing more regular visits will help you spot any potential issues before they occur and, for those sites where you are certain of a flare-up, installing snap traps into external bait stations (where safe) can help sweep up the dominant rodents before they establish their new abode!

QUEEN WASPS

Queen wasp

The onset of cooler temperatures and the inevitable wasp nest end-cycle will see fertilised queen wasps seeking appropriate overwintering sites such as loft spaces, insulated sheds or garages and other protected cavities within buildings. This can cause the occurrence of call outs from distressed members of the public feeling that they have a nest.

ACTION It is recommended that if possible, they are left alone. Wasps should be seen as beneficial insects (aphid control in summer and even pollination) when not causing a health and safety risk. If concerns are present in terms of health and safety and large numbers are present then consult with your suppliers or the BPCA team as to the best product or treatment strategy to suit the circumstances.

Pestwatch

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Natalie-Bungay-Staff-BubbleNatalie Bungay
Field and Technical Officer

15 September 2017  |  PPC88

Source: PPC88

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