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How can restaurants in Southampton minimize their rat risk?

 

Nobody wants to spot a rat before their dinner, so recognizing that there will be a constant risk of a rat infestation is the first step. Knowing what to do to prevent it is the second. Rats are a public health problem and a nuisance pest but they are always with us.  In this post we will be examining how restaurants in southampton can minimise their rat risk.

Rats come in two flavours – the most common rat is the Brown Rat (Rattus Norvegicus) about 23cm long without the tail and a weight of about half a kilo. The much rarer Black Rat (Rattus Rattus) can be found in shipping ports but is unlikely to be spotted anywhere else. It is much shorter and lighter with a very long tail.

 

How can restaurants in Southampton minimize their rat risk?

Brown Rat

 

Rats can cause problems in two ways. They are a public health problem because of diseases that are spread in their urine such as Leptospirosis, Salmonella, Listeria, Toxoplasma gondii and Hantavirus. The other problem is their impact on buildings as their constant gnawing behaviour can cause structural damage. They can wreck woodwork, water pipes, gas pipes, brick work and electrical cables. According to the BPCA (British Pest Control Association) the insurance sector estimates that rodent damage to wiring causes 25% of all electrical fires in buildings.

 

 

“Rats can enter a building through a gap as small as 15mm”

 

 

If you own a property, the Prevention of Damage by Pests Act of 1949 requires owners to keep premises rodent free. If you know that you have a rat problem then contact a professional pest control company like Shawyers.

 

How can restaurants in Southampton minimize their rat risk?

Black Rat

How can restaurants in Southampton minimize their rat risk?

The following tips will keep your premises prepared for a rodent free business:

  • Well maintained drain inspection covers and surroundings
  • Tight fitting dustbin lids and recycling units with no overflow in plastic bags
  • Keep your site yard clear, clean and tidy
  • Check the seals to the inside of premises in particular around pipes as a rat can enter a building through a gap as small as 15mm
  • Regular checks at the end of an evening as rats feed at night time. They are omnivores like us so the waste in a restaurant yard will be very tempting
  • If you have any out-buildings such as sheds be as thorough with sealing entrances as the main buildings and leave no gaps underneath the floor

 

Signs to look out for:

  • Rat dropping are similar to grains of rice and a rat will produce about 40 per night
  • Gnawing marks on cables – the gnawing sound can be used to identify the Brown Rat or Common Rat
  • Nests in cavity walls and attics using insulation material, cardboard and other available materials
  • Rat holes to access burrowing systems – usually found next to solid structures
  • Footprints left in dust in less busy areas if your premises. Flour can also be dusted on the floor to identify rat movement

 

How can restaurants in Southampton minimize their rat risk?

Rat footprints in sand

 

Rats have a role to play in our ecosystem and will happily adapt to new habitats away from your business – you don’t want them.

Contact our trained professional pest controller – Chris with any questions.