Warehouses can be inviting places for a variety of pests. The spacious layouts of warehouse properties offer pests a wide selection of corners, cracks, crevices, drains and other locations for hiding, feeding and breeding. Open doors and loading docks make it easy for pests to slip in, and frequent shipments and deliveries provide unwitting transport for new pest inhabitants. Busy warehouse workers are often too preoccupied with the tasks at hand to notice early signs of pest infestations.
Some pests can establish large infestations very quickly, making them difficult to treat and control. If you own, manage or work in a warehouse, it’s important to know which pests could potentially cause issues for you and your facility. Here are some of the most common pests found in warehouses and the problems they may cause:
Potential problems: In addition to being potential vectors for bacteria, such as E. coli and Salmonella, these widely despised pests can leave behind droppings that can create odor concerns as well as unsightly spots on walls, floors and equipment. Cockroaches can hitchhike into warehouses and businesses on shipments and deliveries, and they actually live and thrive in materials commonly found in warehouses, such as cardboard boxes and wood. Because they live largely in darks cracks and crevices, cockroaches are sometimes difficult to notice until they develop large populations.
Potential problems: High ceilings, rafters and open beams make attractive nesting and perching spots for birds. Their swooping and chirping can be unsettling and distracting for employees, and their unsanitary droppings can contaminate products and equipment. Bird droppings can contaminate anything it comes into contact with as they can carry pathogens that may cause disease. Birds can also disrupt warehouse operations, impact productivity and harm business reputations. Because some types of bird species are protected, it’s important to seek help from a pest control or bird control professional for help with identification before attempting to control them.
Potential problems: Commensal rodents, such as rats and mice, can enter warehouses through small cracks and holes the size of a quarter (rats) or dime (mice), depending on exactly which rodent you’re dealing with. Like cockroaches, they can establish large infestations quickly. Rodents can carry pathogens that may cause several diseases and can leave behind unhygienic droppings, which can contaminate products and equipment, as well as potentially threaten the health and safety of workers, customers and visitors. In addition, rodent gnawing can cause damage to structures, electrical systems, equipment, packaging and products. Rodents can create an unpleasant working environment, and dealing with them can interrupt warehouse schedules, productivity and efficiency.
Potential problems: Flies can slip into your warehouse through open doors, windows, cracks and other openings. Their buzzing can be irritating to workers and visitors, and some types of flies can bite. Flies can carry pathogens which can cause disease and help spread foodborne illnesses. They can also be difficult to control. Small fly larvae can develop and thrive in warehouse floor drains, as well as in trash receptacles and recycling bins. In many areas of the country, large flies increase in population during warm weather and become particular nuisances during summer months. Small flies, however, are persistent year round and are often brought in on produce or have multiple small breeding sites which can be difficult to find and clean.
Potential problems: Nuisance wildlife pests, like raccoons, squirrels, bats and other small animals, often seek the warmth and shelter of warehouse properties. In addition to frightening workers and visitors, wildlife and small animal pests can leave behind unsafe droppings. They can also cause damage to structures and property, as well as to your business reputation.
It’s important to keep in mind that the presence of pests may violate compliance and regulatory standards in certain industries. That’s one reason why having a commercial pest control plan in place is a good idea. Terminix® Commercial offers customized, fast and effective warehouse pest control solutions with minimal disruption to your operations, plus proactive prevention and monitoring strategies to help deter new problems from starting. Terminix Commercial will also help train your staff to recognize and avoid potential pest issues. Get a free estimate today, and take pests out of your inventory.