The Complete Guide To Protecting Your Home From Pests
If you were to ask the average Australian whether they felt safe within their property, majority of them would say yes based on their ‘sense of security. What most people don’t realise is that they have dangers hiding in plain sight in their properties. Some of the most critical hazards are from pests that lurk around the property and that can potentially infest your home. The reality is Australian properties face an everyday threat from unwanted pests. According to The Daily Telegraph, damage from termites cost the Australian public $1.3 billion. In a statement from Comparethemarket.com’s Abigail Koch, she said that “Pests cause more damage to homes than natural disaster, theft and burglaries combined and insurance companies do not cover pests.”
It is important to know about the potential dangers that may be lurking around your property. The team from Dawson’s Pest have provided insight into the types of pest infestations that could threaten the safety of structure, hygiene and people within your property.
How can pest infestations affect your property?
The main ways pests can affect the safety of your property include:
When pests come into contact with food, they can transmit harmful bacteria that cause foodborne illnesses.
Disease and virus transmission
Pests can carry diseases and viruses such as Hepatitis A, Salmonellosis, Shigellosis and Trachoma. Exposure to pests that carry the viruses or diseases will greatly increase the risk of infection.
Pests can create structural hazards in your home that could make the property more susceptible to fire or affect the stability, thus increasing the risk of injury.
What are some of the pests that could threaten your property?
There are several types of pests that can affect the safety of your property. We have highlighted a few of the common pests to look out for.
Cockroaches are the embodiment of filth and germs. They invade properties and make intimate spaces their own. Their presence within your property could see them spread harmful germs and bacteria that can lead you to have food poisoning.
Cockroach infestation can be quite serious if action isn’t taken early. According to a BBC article, a pair of German cockroaches that have an abundant source of food and water could multiply to have over 2 million offspring. If you notice any cockroaches within your property, get treatment as soon as possible.
In the video below, you can see an example of a cockroach infestation problem.
Flies and maggots
Flies can cause health hazards within a property since they can carry germs and harmful bacteria easily. They feast on decaying organic matter such as rubbish or faeces, which they feed on and can spread illness through their interaction between filth and human touch. Flies can become a huge infestation problem. The female fly can lay up to 150 eggs at a time and approximately 500 in her lifetime. In the video below, you can see the lifecycle of the fly.
In the video below, you can also see a video showing the magnitude of maggots invading the property.
Rodents can become a huge problem if they aren’t tackled early. They have the ability to breed quickly, cause damage to your property and they can be difficult to exterminate. They can cause health risks since they navigate through filth and spread germs by coming into contact with food, surfaces and objects. They are known for carrying and spreading disease. Any signs of rodents in your property should be addressed immediately before the situation escalates.
In the video below, you can see this South Australian property being overcome by a rodent infestation so large, that the property has succumbed to one of the biggest rodent swarms to ever be seen in Australia.
Termites are important to the ecological function as they convert dead trees into organic matter. However, they can cause serious hazards in the urban environment when they consume the wooden structures in buildings. In a study conducted by Griffith University, up to 65% of Australian housing is affected by termite activity, costing Australian property owners $4 billion annually. Their presence within the property can lead to increased health and fire risks. The two videos below show properties that have been severely impacted by termite infestations.
Prevention against termite damage is needed. Physical and chemical barriers can prevent termites from invading and damaging your property.
Bed bugs aren’t as dangerous as other pests, however their presence can still cause irritation. They feed on human blood and their bite typically causes a large reddened and itchy weal that fades into a red spot. Good hygiene practices are recommended, however, treatments should be used to eradicate any bed bug activity within the property. The video below shows how bad bed bug infestations can become.
Common causes for attracting unwanted pests.
The impact of hoarding goes beyond collecting physical objects. Hoarders are unable to comprehend the danger of their situation and they are unable to change their behaviour accordingly. Hoarding creates health and fire hazards. It often leads to pest infestations from cockroaches and other vermin within the property. In the video below, you can see one family’s plight with hoarding and pest infestation in their home.
In the video, the extreme hoarding has made their home a haven for roaches. Minimise the risk of attracting unwanted pests by adopting minimalist and clean habits.
Leaving food around.
Pests are always on the lookout for a food source. Small actions such as food and drink spills can start to attract unwanted pests to your property. Preventative action is the best way to deter these pests from infesting your property. Take actions such as:
● Cleaning up any food or drink spills immediately.
● Ensuring food isn’t left out in the open.
Rubbish & filth.
Keep items such as rubbish, compost, sewerage or faeces away from your property. These will attract unwanted pests that can carry disease and viruses that can infect the people within your property.
Moisture in your property.
One of the most overlooked causes for attracting unwanted pests into your property is the moisture that is in your property. Pests are seeking water and food sources in and around your property. Leaks from plumbing or the home’s water systems, water holes near your property or recent rainfalls can attract pests to your property.
It is important that you minimise clutter around your property. Pests may hide under old newspapers, boxes and other clutter.
Openings in the property.
Cracks and holes in your property’s windows, foundation walls, plumbing and vents make it easier for unwanted pests to enter your property. Look into sealing options to fill in holes and cracks that will prevent pests from entering your property.
You might find that you are doing everything right, but pests are still affecting your property. Speak with your neighbours about how to control pest issues within the community. You can also consider hiring a pest control business to treat the perimeter of your property.
Pest infestations pose serious health risks to your property. It’s in your best interest to nip it in the bud before it escalates to become a serious issue. You can also refer to this helpful resource from the Australian Government’s Department of Health. Take action today and protect your property and your loved ones from the risks presented by pest infestations.