Residents of Bridgend County Borough are being reminded that the local council offers a free domestic service for dealing with rats, mice, bedbugs and cockroaches, and only charges for the treatment of fleas and wasps.
The reminder follows recent media coverage highlighting how calls to the council’s pest control service have increased by 53 per cent in the last two years.
Cllr Dhanisha Patel, Cabinet Member for Wellbeing and Future Generations, said: ““The number of calls about rats that Bridgend County Borough Council receives is always going to be high as we are one of the few areas in Wales to still offer local residents a free and extremely popular pest control service.
“While we have recorded an increase in calls since the pandemic began, our system records each one individually even if it concerns the same rat or property, so the figures should not be read as being somehow representative of rodent numbers.
“Nor should we underestimate factors such as the impact of the pandemic, the fact that people have been at home more and the loss of potential food sources due to businesses closing, especially during periods of lockdown.
“Following the recent introduction of a new pest control contractor and new procedures, we have already started to record a significant fall in calls about rats. These new procedures include increased proactive sewer baiting, better communication with householders, a reduction in the number of unnecessary visits and more.
“Very importantly, it also focuses on making residents more aware of preventative measures that they can take at home.”
If there is a repetitive problem or a situation which could affect public health, the Shared Regulatory Service will inspect the location and determine whether there are any environmental factors that should be tackled, such as overgrown land, excessive feeding of birds or accumulations of refuse within gardens.
Officers primarily work with landowners and property owners to address the problem or to arrange for preventative works to be carried out, and where necessary will also take further action.