As one of South Africa’s largest cities, Cape Town experiences relatively high pest issues. This can be attributed to the area’s high population density and ever-increasing urban development. Where there is leftover food and warmth, pests will flock, and homes and businesses will certainly feel their presence when an infestation gets out of hand.

In just a few minutes of reading, find out about the most common pests dealt with by professionals involved in pest control Cape Town. Learn when you should seek the help of companies such as Pest Managers

Cockroach infestation dealt with by pest control Cape Town

Coming in hot at first place is the cockroach, a light brown or striped pest that can grow up to 16mm in its adulthood in some species. Although winged, many species of roaches cannot fly effectively, yet it is their fast speed capabilities that keep pest control Cape Town companies busy. Roaches in general are recognisable by their two long antennae. These serve as sensory devices to check out their environment. They also lead them to the closest food and water source, as well as allow them to communicate with fellow roaches.

The cockroach multiplies via protective egg capsules, that usually contain around 40 eggs and will only be carried for 24 hours before imminent hatching. Once the roaches hatch, they are on their own. They must fend for themselves, which they usually do by feeding on the droppings of nearby adults. This is until they are ready to search for food and raid your cupboards by themselves. This species enjoys living indoors, and you may spot them first hanging around your bathrooms and kitchens. If you spot one or more cockroaches, it is highly advisable to contact your local pest control Cape Town company to investigate further. Infestations are almost always worse than they seem.

Mice infestations dealt with by pest control Cape Town companies

While most of us find mice to be incredibly cute, the unfortunate fact that these critters have the potential to destroy bits of your home remains ever-present. While the common house mouse itself is not a direct threat to your health, they can carry and spreading disease such as the hantavirus, listeria, and salmonellosis (through their droppings, saliva, and urine). For humans, these diseases can be deadly. The more severe the infestation, the higher the likelihood of you becoming sick.

Mice also multiply very quickly, which is why people contact rat control Cape Town companies as soon as they notice an infestation. Experts argue that no matter what it may look like, no home has just one mouse. Females breed all year around and can produce between 5 to 10 litters a year, with up to 8 babies in each litter. This means that a family of 6 could increase to 60 in only three months, as an example.

While the idea of a mouse burning down your house may seem ridiculous, the possibility is a strong one. Mice take great joy in chewing and gnawing on wires, especially within the walls and floors. Forget about worrying about your cell phone cables and bedside light wires – your main concern should be your household electrical wiring system. It seems quite outrageous to think that such a small and sweet looking creature (with no malicious intentions) can destroy something so intricate – yet they certainly can.

Like other rodents, mice chew on things to keep their teeth healthy and trimmed. Yet these dental concerns could result in exposed wiring which drastically increases the possibility of a fire resulting from sparks. Mice do not stop at wiring, though. They also enjoy chewing on the following:

  • Rubber
  • Insulation
  • Aluminium
  • Soft concrete
  • Wood
  • Furniture
  • Gas lines

Do not beat yourself up for allowing mice to enter your home. These small creatures are professionals at entering homes through tight spaces like thieves in the night. Doorways, slightly ajar windows, roof vents and pipes are some prime entry points for the critters. The fact that they can climb, jump and swim masterfully helps them along the way. It is almost impossible to prevent mice from entering your home.

The fact that mice are willing to consume anything is almost as problematic as their potential to cause electrical fires. Mice eat between 15 and 20 times each day and tend to make their nests close to food sources (such as the comfortable kitchen pantry or cereal cupboard.) It comes without saying that mice having access to the same food that you are eating is a massive health hazard, as you may contract any of the abovementioned diseases from them.

How do you know if you have mice and need pest control assistance?

You will not always be able to see your mouse roommate. Sometimes you will discover droppings or notice food items with small bite marks in them. One major indicator is hearing noises in your walls or roof, especially at night as this is when mice are most active. When you clean up droppings or nesting material, make sure that you do not simply sweep or vacuum them up. This can release bacteria into the air that you and others may breathe in. Rather, wear a mask and spray a disinfectant on the area in question, let it activate for a few minutes, and then use paper towels to clean it.

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Rat infestations

Some of us fear them, some of us keep them as pets. However, most of us are aware that they have the potential to cause widespread problems in homes and buildings. Like mice, rats can breed rapidly and a small population can spiral into a full-blown infestation in no time at all. If one sets eyes upon a rat in your home or building, you can assume that an extensive infestation has already taken hold. This is because rats are secretive and are hardly seen by humans when populations are relatively low.

Rats are usually only spotted by humans when there is limited space for them to hide. Therefore, if you see one, you know the news is not good for your space. Rats are social animals and live with the aim of creating large families and living in a community. Even if you have not seen your rat roommates, you may still notice their presence via droppings, dirt and grease marks on floors and walls. In addition, you may find crumbs you cannot explain. If you notice obvious small tracks in the grass or dirt around the walls of your house, you can assume that you are experiencing an infestation.

Rats are highly intelligent, which means trying to get rid of them on your own may prove difficult. Further, using pesticides without background knowledge may result in rebounding consequences within the fragile ecosystems around our homes. Birds or snakes may feed on the remains and become poisoned with the original pesticide. This, among other factors, is reason enough to contact pest control Cape Town services such as Pest Managers to resolve the issue as compassionately as possible.

Bed bugs

No one likes to wake up covered in bites, especially not in our own beds. Bed bug bites typically appear as small, raised, or flat bumps on the surface of the skin. Itchiness, swelling and redness usually accompany these bites, along with blood droplets on the sheet below you. Having bed bugs does not mean that your space is unhygienic. An infestation is often the result of you traveling and bringing them back home with you unknowingly.

Bed bugs tend to hide and breed in crevices and small cracks in the mattress. They will visit you for a quick nibble a few hours before the sun comes up. Interestingly (and creepily) we do not often feel their bites, as they inject victims with a form of anaesthetic before feeding. While pest control experts have no trouble spotting the signs of a bed bug infestation, to the untrained eye it may be a bit difficult. The following are some tell-tale signs of a bed bug infestation:

  • Blood spots on the sheets
  • Small dark spots or stains on bedding (which are insect droppings)
  • Strange scent – often sweet and sickly
  • Bites

Some may find the idea of an infestation of unseen enemies difficult to comprehend. For many, seeing is believing – and these bugs are adept at hiding. If you are determined to catch a glimpse of bed bugs, the following locations can be checked but with no guarantee:

  • Mattress seams
  • Drawers
  • Bed frames
  • Headboard cracks and crevices
  • Between floorboards
  • Inside electrical plug-points
  • Cupboards
  • Bedside tables
  • Carpets
  • Behind peeling wallpaper and picture frames

Bed bugs can be quite difficult to eradicate, and their presence is certainly felt and hated. While sprays and DIY methods are up for grabs in your journey to rid yourself of these nuisances, speed up the process by calling Pest Managers, your go-to pest control Cape Town professionals.

Flies

Flies are perhaps one of the most annoying pests. Flies cause problems in the homes of many South Africans. Our warm weather conditions encourage fly breeding and activity, meaning that at some point or another (especially if you live in a home with a garden) you will experience a fly infestation. Unbeknownst to many, house flies, drain flies and fruit flies can carry and transmit several different pathogens that can lead to health complications in humans. Some flies, such as mango flies, even bite humans and animals.

Pet waste and exposed rubbish provide the perfect breeding ground for maggots. Often, if flies are a problem in your space, frequent maggot experiences are a given. Several fly species mature from eggs to adults in just one week. This says more than enough about how quickly a small problem can get out of hand. Sometimes a few fly rolls and an electric fly bat just will not cut it. You may need to invest in pest control Cape Town services to alleviate the situation.

Wasps

Best known for their painful bites and long, dangling legs, wasps pose life threatening risks to many who are allergic to stings. Nests are constructed of saliva and chewed wood pulp, which gives them a distinctive appearance. They usually build their nests outside under eaves and wall cavities, but sometimes choose to build their nest indoors (making the situation even more complicated). If a nest remains in an isolated area and is not disturbed, you should be able to live unbothered by wasps.