Do I need a license to do my own pest control?

Can I do my own pest control at my home or office? ERMA – Environmental Risk Management Authority phased in new laws for Pest Management practices in 2019. Insecticides and Rodent control products may be purchased and used at home. ERMA does not prohibit the purchase of common low risk products commonly used in the home or office for DIY. Health and Safety laws do overlap commercial use however and Pest Control in the workplace should only be undertaken by a person who can show proof of training for the tasks undertaken.

Keep in mind, If results are not achieved professional Pest Managers have training and tools which can solve most pest issues with ease and quite often with the use of lower toxicity chemicals and solutions. Professional Pest Controllers do not achieve results with the use of stronger and more toxic chemical, rather it is a knowledge of pest habits and tools available to the industry which solves problems quickly. Using DIY chemicals could very well expose you and your family to an excess amount of chemistry which may not be necessary.

New ERMA regulations have replaced the  HSNO Laws which prevented the sale of commercial grade insecticides except to licensed professionals with experience and training. ERMA now permits only professionals who meet NZQA level 3 industry training compliance to undertake Pest Management operations in the Home or commercial sectors.

Please remember to Read the label on any product used around the home for Pest control. Pest control products even when purchased at the hardware store are potentially very hazardous to non target pests, aquatic environments and turf. Never dispose of unused products without first referring to the label.

Insecticides actually are largely not harmful to humans but deadly to insects, and more deadly for fish and other aquatic life, so when insecticides are not stored properly or disposed of outside of label instructions then harm to non targets can be far reaching, especially if traces of the product make their way to the sea or rivers before they naturally biodegrade. Commercial companies who apply insecticides are the most at risk since they carry larger amounts of concentrated chemicals- So almost anyone who carries out pest control commercially or [on a] commercial site must have ERMA approved training to ensue he/she is appropriately qualified to handle the substances.

Of the shelf chemicals can still be attained for domestic use by the public, however these are in small quantities or less concentrations- minimizing the risk of environmental pollution. Applying these chemicals outside of the specifications on the label is illegal and in most cases they are suitable only for domestic situations. It is illegal to provide services for profit to domestic or commercial situations without ERMA approved training.

Licensed Pest Management Operators are required to maintain industry training and product knowledge on a regular basis to comply with the Health and Safety Act. This maintains a skill level of the average operator and offers some customer assurance and confidence in the technician.

EcoSan Solutions will only use qualified technicians to service your property. You can view our current training certificates on our About us page  Click here

Do It Yourself Pest Control Tips

  • Rats and Mice

Rats and Mice enter our homes and workplace for two reasons. Food and Shelter. Humans can make it easy for Rodents to find both of their needs or we can make it more difficult. Here are some tips to discourage rats and mice from disturbing your peace..

Food should be stored 15 inches high from the floor. Rats and mice love to feed on carbohydrates such as wheat products like cereals, dry pet food, bread and grains. Rats and mice are also partial to a nice block of chocolate or drinking chocolate. Store these products in airtight containers which are better at deterring rodents than sealed plastic bags. Both rats and mice can access cupboards with closed doors or drawers so be aware they are crafty!

Exterior trees should be trimmed back 15 inches from the house roof line if they are not higher than the gutters. If the trees extend higher than the gutters, branches and foliage should be trimmed 1 meter back from the gutters or roof perimeter. Rats will climb the trees and jump onto the roof and gain access to the ceilings where they will chew cables and other electrical and possibly water pipes etc.

Garden shrubs foliage, grass and objects should be trimmed and maintained 5 to 10 centimetres away from the building perimeter or foot print. This gives the Rats less security whilst foraging around the building and they will feel less comfortable.

Trapping rats or mice with conventional snap traps, use peanut butter or Nutella as bait. Rats like to try to mobilize the bait off the trap and using something sticky prevents this. Also secure the trap with glue or nails, Rats will often nudge or move the trap around causing it to activate with no kill. Rats and mice are very smart and will not fall for this trick twice. They will also become averse to the scent of the bait.

  • Gel baiting for Cockroaches and Ants

Gel baiting for both Cockroaches and Ants is a popular way of controlling both of these insects when they make their way into our homes and workplaces. Baits are most effective when used in the kitchen and food preparation environments. The reason for this is the Ants or Roaches are most likely present due to the attraction of food. When they are a problem in other areas, they may be seeking shelter or a good place to build a nest as opposed to searching for nutrition and therefore less likely to feed on gel baits since they exploit their need for food in order for the active ingredient to be consumed.

Principle mode of action of gel baits is for the insect to consume the bait which will slowly release an active ingredient in the insects gut. This will eventually kill the insect but not before the food has been fed to other generations back in the nest. Since both roaches and ants have workers which find food and bring it back to the nest to feed or resupply, baiting is a highly effective method for controlling Cockroach and Ant nests.

Competitive foods  Should be kept away from placed gel baits as the insect may well prefer sugar on the bench or residual cooking fats over the gel. So keep the area regularly cleaned.

Avoid sprays and chemical which may taint the gel bait. Both Cockroaches and Ants can detect toxins which may cause an aversion reaction to the Gel bait. Particularly other insecticides such as fly spray.

Gel or liquid baits are both sold to consumers. Liquid baits which are common for Ant baits are often blend of sugar and boric acid or another simple active ingredient. These are not designed to make there way back to the nest and are best used in traps which isolate the Ant after being attracted to the sugar. They sometimes will be effective on a small nest of sugar ants but will struggle to control more sophisticated ant colony networks. Gel baits are designed to be placed in the Ants or Cockroach path to be consumed, these are best not placed in a device or trap except where required for food safety.

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