Teaching staff about IPM

Effective Integrated Pest Management for Businesses: Involve Your Staff

The only thing your business should warmly welcome are your customers, not pests. Whilst it’s highly likely that you already have an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program in place, the question is if your employees are familiar with the most common pests lurking in your commercial space.

Do your staff know the tell-tale signs of rats and mice? What about those of cockroaches?

When it comes to defending your business against pests, your employees are the front-liners. It’s important that they know your IPM program by heart so they can help detect and report pest issues. This, in turn, will enable you to resolve any arising issues quickly.

Why this matters, you might ask? Apart from being downright nuisances, pests can threaten the health of your customers, especially if it’s an infestation we’re talking about. E.coli, Salmonella, Staphylococcus, Shigella, Bacillus and Clostridium are just a few of disease-causing pathogens pests such as flies, rodents and cockroaches transmit.

What’s more, pests and poor pest control practices can cost your business annual audit points. A poor score can damage not only your reputation, but also your bottom line.

Avoid the risks pest pose and involve your staff on the front end. Follow the simple steps below and you’ll be on the right track in training them.

Be Proactive

Establishing daily sanitation routines is essential. A few practices to enforce include the following:

• Sweep and mop on a regular basis. Be careful not to leave out the space underneath machines, tables and beds.

• Wipe down equipment regularly.

• Wipe off countertops and sweep floors especially where food is present.

• Line and cover all trash cans securely. Dispose of trash every day and ensure garbage bins and dumpsters are cleaned regularly.

• Clean spills around the sinks of bathrooms and break rooms. Pests such as mice and cockroaches only need a minimal amount of water to survive for multiple days.

Always Inspect

Closely monitor every square foot of your commercial space. Ensure the following pest hot spots are regularly checked by your staff:

• Hidden, protected places such as wall voids (through access panels) and under appliances

• Food preparation and dining areas

• Staff locker rooms

• Storage areas and closets

• Laundry areas

• Loading areas where shipments come in and go out

See Something? Say Something.

Early and proper communication is a vital part of an IPM plan. Create a pest-sighting protocol that clearly defines the steps to be taken if a pest is spotted. This ought to include whom to report it to. Ensure every staff member understands and can implement the protocol as well.

To give your pest manager the best chance to come up with a customised solution to resolve the issue, your employees will need to record when, where and how many were seen at the time. What’s better is if you can catch one of the pests for later identification. Just remember to keep it in a container.

It’s paramount to be on the forefront when it comes to preparing for a pest problem. Properly and continuously educate your staff on pests and pest prevention practices. This will enable you to maintain a clean and healthy space not only for you and your employees, but also and especially for your customers.

Got a pest infestation? Call Bob Gunn Termite Solutions in Brisbane today. We offer FREE quotes for all our services.

Man reading a paper with HVAC on it

HVAC System Pest Control Tips

Like humans, pests need to shelter themselves and keep dry. This is why they persistently invade buildings even after countless efforts of being repelled. The HVAC system is one integral part of commercial properties that can be easily infested. Once pests begin to breed and live inside the HVAC system, you can expect several health risks, including allergies and respiratory problems.

Another reason why it’s paramount for facility management to properly maintain the system is because pests can invade its parts and cause massive damage. Some of them can even get trapped inside and die. Not only can this result in costly repair bills, but also in a problematic indoor air quality.

Pests That Can Invade HVAC Systems:

• Mice and Rats
• Cockroaches
• Spiders
• Snakes
• Possums

HVAC System Pest Control Tips:

• Clean and secure your ducts, vents and flues post-installation
• Inspect for any cracks and gaps
• Get an annual HVAC maintenance
• Have air-vent screens installed and clear outdoor units
• Keep cooling system free of vegetation and debris
• Change the filters on a regular basis
• Ensure exterior areas around the building are free of weeds and overgrowth

Seek the Help of Professionals

Effectively keep pests out of the HVAC system in factories, schools, retail stores, and other commercial properties by scheduling regular pest control treatment and maintenance. When it comes to seasonal pests, quarterly treatments are suggested.

At Bob Gunn Termite Solutions, we offer commercial pest control and can assist you with HVAC system pest control. Get in touch with us in Brisbane today and let us know about your needs. We look forward to hearing from you!

Family enjoying spring

Spring Pest Control: 7 Ways to Keep Pests out of Your Property

Spring is all about enjoying the great outdoors! However, whether you choose to relish the season inside or outside your home, pests can still easily ruin your mood. Thankfully, all it takes are a few steps to keep pests out of your property. Learn what to do. Check the spring pest control tips below.

Bob Gunn’s Spring Pest Control Tips

1. Keep Them Out

Not letting them in is your first line of defence. Check all screens for holes and windows and doors for gaps. Inspect packages and furniture before bringing them into your home as well.

2. Throw out Stagnant Water

Mosquitoes breed in stagnant water. This is why it’s important to dispose of objects or cover containers that gather water outside. You can also increase water circulation by adding a waterfall or fountain.

3. Always Clean After Yourself

Ants, cockroaches and rodents love crumbs and food spills, so see to it that there aren’t any by regularly wiping down your counters as well as sweeping or vacuuming and mopping the floors. It’s also important that your bin has a tight lid and trash is taken out on the regular.

4. Pay Attention to Your Fruits and Vegetables

See to it that any fruits and vegetables outside the fridge are eaten before they turn overripe, otherwise insects – especially fruit flies – will start to invade them.

5. Check Outside Furnishing

Inspect your outdoor furniture for spider webs, egg sacks and insects that may have turned them into their home. If you see one, remove it or have it removed by a trustworthy pest manager.

6. Put Wood at a Distance

Unless you want termites to gain free access to your home, ensure any stack of wood is placed at least 20 feet away from your house and above the ground.

7. Get Professional Help

Protect your home better by ditching the D.I.Y.’s and, instead, seeking assistance from a reputable pest control company just like Bob Gunn Termite Solutions. We’ll design you a pest management strategy and offer a solution that best fits your specific situation. Contact us today.

american cockroach bite

What You Need to Know About Cockroach Bites

Cockroaches are nocturnal omnivores that can bite human skin. Whilst they rarely do so, a simple wound they’ve caused can last for up to a week.

Can All Types of Cockroaches Bite?

Yes, all cockroaches can bite. If they feel threatened, they choose to be offensive rather than defensive. It’s also important to note that some cockroaches are more likely to attack than others.

When their food supply is low, that’s when they attack. On the other hand, they’re unlikely to do so if there’s an existing food source such as a garbage bin or uncovered food.

Their timid nature doesn’t stop them from attacking humans while they’re asleep. Cockroaches go for places where food residue may be left behind. These can be the following:
• Mouth
• Hands
• Fingernails
• Feet
• Eyelashes

How Painful Is a Cockroach Bite?

The pain of a cockroach bite depends on the bitten person’s tolerance level. He or she may experience a slight twinge or pinch but the discomfort doesn’t last very long.

What Does a Cockroach Bite Look Like?

You can easily mistake a cockroach bite for a bed bug bite or a bite from other insects (mosquitoes, fleas, etc). However, there are a few differences which set a cockroach bite apart.

Compared to a bed bug bite, a bite from a cockroach is bright red in colour, 1-4 mm in width and is a little hefty. Also, there won’t be a series of bites as in the case of a bed bug attack. There will only be one wound.

Swelling and itching most likely occur. Once infected, the bite can lead to inflammation and outgrow in size.

What Are Some Cockroach Bite Home Remedies?

Wash the area thoroughly with a disinfectant as soon as you’re bitten. This will not only help eliminate bacteria, but this will also prevent contracting infection.

If swelling happens, apply an ice pack to reduce it. Take an antihistamine if itchiness begins. Warm water, lemon juice and Aloe Vera are a few home remedies that you can apply.

Remember to never scratch a cockroach bite as it can cut the skin, risking an infection.

How to Prevent Cockroach Bites

Practice good sanitation and you’ll find virtually zero cockroaches in your home. However, if they’ve started to infest your property already, it’s best to hire reputable pest control technicians.

For cockroach treatments that work, contact Bob Gunn Termite Solutions in Brisbane today. A Queensland pest manager multi-award winner, we adopt measures based on your specific situation and go the extra mile for our customers every time.

A laundromat

Why Your Non-Food Business Still Needs Pest Control

Just because your business doesn’t handle food and/or beverages doesn’t mean you don’t need pest control. Commercial pest control services such as insect and rodent control are still necessary.

Start protecting your reputation and your bottom line better today. Read on and learn how.

Every Business Needs Commercial Pest Control

Pests are a threat to any kind of business – they don’t care what industry you are in. Bed bugs love hotels, and offices can quickly be overrun by nuisances such as ants, rodents and cockroaches.

Termites can wreak havoc to any kind of business as well. Plus, they don’t care if your building is new or not.

If your business doesn’t have a cleaning service hired to clean spills and debris every day, you’re at a greater risk. Unwanted visitors also like to reside in storage rooms filled with cardboard boxes, so watch out.

Remove Risks From the Start With a Pest Control Plan

Your business’ reputation is nothing less than important, which is why it’s paramount to have an effective pest control plan before it’s too late. After all, recovering from news of an infestation, even after you’ve addressed the issue, can be extremely difficult.

The Costly Consequences

An infestation can not only disrupt your day-to-day business routine, but it can also affect your business’ finances greatly. Lost income, compensation claims and damaged inventory are just some of the costs that can hurt your revenue.

Call in the Big Gunns Now

Prevent significant financial losses by taking advantage of thorough and cost-effective commercial pest control services early on. Whether or not your organisation is a food business, getting pest control can safeguard your public image, your employees’ and customers’ health as well as keep you in the business.

For top-notch commercial pest control, contact Bob Gunn Termite Solutions in Brisbane today. We offer FREE quotes for all our customers in Brisbane, Ipswich, Logan, the Redlands as well as those in the Sunshine Coast and the Gold Coast.

A sick home

Six Ways to Tell That Your Home Is Sick

With winter fast approaching, you can expect the common cold and other illnesses to disrupt your daily grind. Whilst focusing on staying healthy, why not think about the health of your home as well?

Here are the six major ways your home can get sick:

1. Mouldy Walls and Ceilings

Properties, especially those built on the coast or on permeable clay soil, are susceptible to moulds.

Moulds are signs that there is a moisture leakage somewhere. It could be linked to insufficient air flow, a leaky roof, moisture in the subfloor or an issue with draining and guttering.

If you’re unable to get up into or onto the roof or under the house yourself, hire a builder to do the job for you. Improved ventilation or new drainage corrects most issues.

2. Severe Cracking

Cracks more than five millimetres in width may relate to a home’s foundation’s movement – a costly problem to correct.

Tree roots sucking moisture from the soil causing it to dry up can cause cracks. Weak foundation or moisture issues in the subfloor area are possible causes too.

When you see severe cracking, contact a reputable builder right away. They will drop by, take a look at your problem and fix the problem for you.

3. Faulty Windows and Jamming Doors

Another sign that moisture is slowly destroying your home is when there are doors and windows getting stuck in a closed position or can’t be closed at all. It is moisture that causes the wooden frames to expand and contract.

When this happens, check for leaks and other symptoms of moisture. We also advise getting a professional to address the problem’s cause, as well as the faulty doors and windows themselves.

4. Rotting Wooden Decks and Balustrades

Wooden decks that are rotting can either be a sign of a dreaded moisture issue or termite infestation. Whilst this is a preventable problem, this poses a very serious safety risk to homeowners and tenants when overlooked.

Single wooden board replacements are cost-effective, short-term fixes. On the other hand, if you want a long-term solution, consider replacing the whole deck or balustrade instead.

5. Musty Smells and Water Stains

A musty smell can mean that your home is in trouble. Teamed with stains, mould or wet patches are sure signs that something isn’t right. These should be addressed right away as these can cause homeowners or tenants to get sick.

Causes of this can be poor ventilation or a hidden leak requiring attention. You can fix this by replacing the carpet, getting rid of the moisture source and improving ventilation.

6. Termites

Termites move quite fast, so if you see a trail of mud in the wood (or even concrete parts) of your home, call a pest inspector as soon as you can. Our multi-awarded team can help you out with this one.

Keep your eyes peeled for wood damage in and beneath your home, especially if you’re in a bushy area. Serious damage and an infestation can be prevented if termites are spotted early enough.

Think Your Home Is Sick?

Get your home back to full health before it’s too late. Now is the time to contact a property inspection expert for an assessment.

At Bob Gunn Termite Solutions, we can provide you with a thorough building and pest inspection as well as a termite treatment if necessary. Give us a call on 07 3286 9877 or send us a message. We look forward to hearing from you!

Fruit flies on an orange

Fruit Fly Prevention and Eradication

More and more fruit flies have been coming out since the start of the season. Fruit flies are those tiny winged nuisances that seem to multiply overnight.

An egg can become an adult fruit fly in just 8-10 days. What’s worse? They can lay 500 eggs in one go on organic materials, most commonly on fermenting fruits. They’re also known to lay eggs in the following areas:

  • Sink Drains
  • Garbage Disposals
  • Recycled Cans and Bottles
  • Damp Sponges
  • What Attracts Fruit Flies?

    You can eliminate fruit flies by identifying the source of the infestation first. Yeasty and vinegary smells, as well as odours of decay, attract them. That’s why it helps to put items like tomatoes, potatoes and onions in the refrigerator until your fruit fly situation is solved.

    You can find their breeding sites in things or places that are moist, semi-liquid or that have fermenting goo or gunk. These include:

  • Bins
  • Drip Pans
  • Trash Compactor
  • Scum in Drains
  • Filthy Buckets
  • Mops or Sponges
  • Mop Water in Cracks or Crevices
  • How to Prevent and Get Rid of Fruit Flies

    Discarding the produce where the fruit flies are hovering around and resting on will not get rid of the problem. Here are a few practical tips to get rid of fruit flies:

  • Shut all doors and window. Most screens are not effective as barriers since these pests can fit right through the openings.
  • Spray and clean the bottom of trash bins, mop the floors and take your garbage out on a regular basis – twice a day, preferably.
  • Clean out all drains using a bacterial foam or gel drain cleaners.
  • Need help with your fruit fly situation? Don’t hesitate to contact Bob Gunn Termite Solutions. We offer top-notch fruit fly treatments for homes and businesses in Brisbane, Ipswich, Logan, on the Sunshine Coast, the Gold Coast and surrounds.

    Get in touch with us today on 07 3286 977 for a FREE quote! We look forward to hearing from you.

    Rats in a restaurant kitchen

    4 Tips to Keep Rodents out of Your Restaurant

    Rodents always make their way to the list of the most threatening pests in the food industry. Their activity in food establishments especially increases during the cooler months since low temperatures prompt mice and rats to seek shelter in warm areas with easily accessible food and water.

    Do Not Underestimate Rodents

    Pest control matters a lot in restaurant health inspections, which is why restaurateurs ought to have a plan to prevent rodent issues. In fact, a mere evidence of a live mouse or rat being discovered can lead to a food establishment being shut down until the problem is resolved.

    Protect your business and reputation by keeping rodents out of your establishment and its online reviews. Here are a few steps on how you can keep rodents out of your restaurant.

    1. Inspect or Get Inspected

    Proper inspection starts with determining rodent hot spots and knowing what to find. The following are a few of the most common rodent hot spots and runways:

    • Stored Product Areas
    • Cluttered Offices/Back Rooms
    • Behind and Under Kitchen Appliances
    • Within Wall, Ceiling and Floor Voids

    Signs of Rodents

    In these hot spots, look for chew marks on walls, insulation and wiring, packages as well as pellet droppings that look like capsules. Grease or rub marks along walls are also another sign of live rodents. These marks are from their fur.

    Secluded places such as roofs, wall voids and attics can also have rodent nests made of shredded material paper and cloth. Inspect for burrows outside your restaurant as well, specifically near areas where garbage is placed and along the side of your establishment’s foundation.

    2. Block All Possible Entryways

    Rats can fit through quarter-sized holes while mice can fit through holes with the size of a dime. For this reason, it’s important to seal off any potential points of entry. You can do this by…

    • Installing door sweeps
    • Sealing cracks
    • Removing gaps around utility lines
    • Getting rid of any low-hanging tree limbs that touch the building

    Keep rodents out by also ensuring that products and products, before being brought inside your establishment, are checked for rodent warning signs. These include chew marks and suspicious holes. If there are any, refuse the delivery and inform your supplier as soon as possible.

    3. Maintain Cleanliness

    Keeping a clean establishment is one of the best ways to prevent pest infestations from happening. Here are a few steps you can take every day to ensure your building is pest-free:

    • Repair leaky sinks and equipment immediately as moisture attracts rodents.
    • Clean food debris and spills as soon as possible
    • Make an established cleaning procedure for the start and finish of each shift.
    • Never leave dirty dishes overnight.
    • Cover trash receptacles always.
    • De-clutter your office space and storage closets regularly—this is always forgotten.

    4. Educate Your Employees

    Much like running a great restaurant, pest management cannot be done by one person alone. For this reason, it’s important to teach your staff what to look for and who to tell before your issue becomes your customer’s. If everyone helps to keep rodents out of your restaurant, pest management should be a piece of cake.

    Talk to a trustworthy pest manager—just like Bob Gunn Termite Solutions—today. We’re more than glad to discuss and address the concerns you have regarding rodents, cockroaches, flies, ants and other pests. For a FREE quote, you may call us on 07 3286 9877.

    Bee leaving stinger on skin

    What You Need to Know About Bee Stings

    In Australia, bees claim about two lives annually. Whilst fatalities caused by bee stings are rare, bees hospitalise people more than any venomous creature.

    Read on and learn what happens when you’re stung by a bee, and how you can tell whether you’ll get a severe reaction or not.

    How Do Bees Sting?

    Bees possess a venom sac and, at the end of their abdomen, a barbed stinger. They use these parts when they feel threatened or under attack, mainly to defend their hive from being destroyed.

    Once the bee pierces the skin with its barb, venom is injected and pheromones are released. These pheromones can stimulate nearby bees to join the defensive attack.

    Bee Venom

    When injected into our body, bee venom can lead to itching, irritation, local swelling and pain that may last for hours. In spite of this, certain bee venom components have been utilised in cancer treatments.

    How Our Body Reacts to Bee Venom

    Whilst a single sting is almost always limited to the aforementioned local effects, there are people who develop an allergy to some bee venom proteins.

    Anaphylaxis can be launched by our body’s immune system to try and protect us against the venom. It is a severe allergic reaction that can be lethal.

    What causes life-threatening problems and hospitalisation is actually not the bee venom itself but our body’s allergy to it.

    How Do I Know If I’m Allergic to Bee Venom?

    You are unlikely to be allergic to bee venom if you haven’t been stung by a bee before. Otherwise, you can develop an allergy.

    You may have an allergic sensitivity if you have gone through large local reaction from the sting, or symptoms separate from the site where you’ve been stung. These include swelling, rashes and itchy skin elsewhere, dizziness and difficulty breathing.

    Get assessed by a doctor who will take a full history of your reactions. Blood allergy testing or skin testing can also help eliminate or confirm potential allergy triggers.

    First Aid

    What to Do When You’ve Been Stung by a Bee

    Unlike wasps, bees leave their sting on the skin, dying shortly after. When you’re stung, get rid of the sting within half a minute. Doing so keeps the amount of venom injected to a minimum.

    To flick or scratch out the barb, use a hard surface. This can be the edge of a credit card, fingernail or key. A cold pack may help relieve symptoms of a minor reaction such as local swelling and pain.

    If you’re stung in the neck region, or you have difficulty breathing or experience any dizziness, light-headedness or wheezing, seek medical attention immediately.

    Prevention

    Bees play an essential role in the environment. If you see a bee, best leave it alone. Don’t try to swat it or step on it. Remember: bees don’t attack unless they feel their hive is in danger.

    To relocate a hive on your property, call an expert. At Bob Gunn Termite Solutions, we are more than capable and glad to assist you with this. Contact us in Brisbane today. We offer FREE quotes on all our services.

    Woman in red thinking

    What to Do During a Home Inspection

    After finding a potential home and hiring a trustworthy home inspector, the next step would be, of course, the inspection itself. As a home buyer, you’d think you can sit back and relax as the inspector does his job. Wrong.

    You also have a role in this vital step that will greatly affect your decision to purchase the property. Read on and discover what you should do during a home inspection.

    Be There if You Can

    Do you what you can to be there when the inspection is being conducted. You can follow the inspector while the inspection is being done and enquire so you can learn more about your home-to-be. If you can’t be there for the inspection, you should meet with the inspector to discuss the report comprehensively.

    Ask

    Don’t hesitate to ask about potential problems or how to maintain parts of the home. However, try not to get in the way of the inspector. Don’t begin to inspect the house yourself, either; you might alter the findings.

    Think Ahead

    Another important thing to remember is that “an inspection is only a snapshot in time on the day of the inspection”. This is according to John Bodrozic of HomeZada. This means that if you’re buying a property in the middle of autumn, think of how the house might perform in various conditions, like summer or winter.

    After the Inspection

    Once an evaluation is completed, the inspector will give you a report on his findings. If there are a lot of deficiencies noted, do not panic. Home inspection reports are detailed, so they can often indicate 50-100 issues, most of which are small.

    The great thing about inspections is that it will help you make informed decisions on whether to back out of a realty deal or not. You also have the option to try to negotiate with the seller to have him or her make the repairs or lower the price if there are more issues you’re not comfortable with.

    Contact Bob Gunn Termite Solutions today. We’re more than glad to tell you about the other many benefits of home inspections as well as building and pest inspections. We offer these services in Brisbane, Ipswich, on the Sunshine Coast, the Gold Coast and surrounds.