Renfrewshire Council

Pest control

Our pest control service carries out treatments on a range of pests.This includes:

You can report pests online using the pest control reporting form, found in the related links section of this page.

Please contact your doctor for advice on how to treat lice found on a person or their clothes.


What you can expect

We do not visit or treat for all these pests and we only offer advice for some however, when appropriate a pest control officer will visit to identify the infestation and carry out the appropriate treatment using approved insecticides and rodenticides as required.

We will aim to respond to all complaints about rodents, wasps and certain insects, for example, fleas and cockroaches within two working days, however during times of high demand this may not be achievable.

General insect complaints, for example, larder beetles will be dealt with within five working days, however during times of high demand this may not be achievable.

We do not offer treatment services for squirrels, foxes, pigeons, seagulls, moles, ants and woodlice.


Gulls in Renfrewshire

The presence of gulls in urban areas has increased in recent years for a number of reasons such as the availability of good nest sites and discarded food.

Most of the gulls that live near us do not cause problems for residents. However, these birds can cause considerable problems including noise, mess from droppings, fouling roofs, walls, windows, gardens, people and domestic washing. Gulls can also cause damage to property by picking at roofing materials and by blocking gutters and down pipes with nesting materials.

Gulls are known to dive and swoop on people and pets, causing distress and alarm among the public, particularly during the nesting season. However, the Council doesn't have a statutory duty to take action against gulls and does not offer a pest control service to deal with gulls. There are private pest control contractors who will offer this service and details of approved contractors can be found through the British Pest Control Associationat : www.bpca.org.uk

Gulls and the Law

This is a BRIEF GUIDE only and not meant as an authoritative source of information.

The principal legislation dealing with the control of birds is the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. Generally, it is illegal to capture, injure and destroy any wild bird or interfere with its nest or eggs. The penalties for disregarding the law are severe.

However, General Licences issued by NatureScot allow measures to be taken against certain common species of birds on grounds which include the preservation of public health or public safety. Any action taken must be humane and the use of an inhumane method which could cause suffering would be illegal. The use of poisons or drugs to take or kill any bird is specifically prohibited except under very special circumstances and with a specific licence issued by the Scottish Government.

Further information on General Licences is available at:

https://www.nature.scot/professional-advice/protected-areas-and-species/licensing/species-licensing-z-guide/birds/birds-licences-public-health-and-safety-and-air-safety

Only the owner of a building or the occupier can take action against any gulls on it, or they can give someone else permission to act on their behalf. Any work carried out must be reported annually to the Scottish Government.

In practice there are very few humane methods to kill gulls and skill and experience is needed to deploy them. Shooting nesting gulls on roofs is considered neither humane nor safe.

It is the responsibility of the owner of property to protect it against gulls nesting on it.

Stop gulls from nesting

You may be able to reduce or break up colonies of nesting birds by using deterrents. If you own or occupy a building which attracts gulls you can:

  • fit long spikes to nesting locations such as chimney-stacks
  • fit short spikes to nesting locations such as dormer roofs
  • fit wires or nets to prevent gulls landing

Stop gulls from scavenging

Gulls hunt for meals in bins and take food when it is dropped on the ground. You can help reduce the amount of food available and stop them foraging by:

  • Not feeding gulls
  • Keeping food out of sight
  • Storing your waste securely to prevent gulls getting into bags
  • Disposing of your litter properly

Charges

There is a call out charge for attendance on site, regardless of whether any treatment is undertaken.

A concession rate applies where you are in receipt of relevant benefits or tax credits.

Renfrewshire Council tenants are not charged for this service.

Please click the Pest Control link on our Fees and Charges page for the current fee.

This charge requires to be pre-paid before the request for treatment will be accepted by the council. 

There is a charge for all treatments on commercial premises.


Rodents - Mice and Rats

Report a pest control issue using the form under the Related Links section of this page.  Pest Control will visit the premises and treat the infestation where necessary.


Wasps

Please note that for wasp nests, we are only able to treat nests which are easily accessible by one Operative and where it is less than 20 feet from ground level. Overhangs, extensions and conservatories which inhibit access will prevent us treating a nest and you should contact a private contractor in such circumstances. Refunds will not be provided where we visit and are unable to carry out a treatment because of such circumstances.

Wasp nests must be treated with extreme caution as some people have severe allergic reactions to wasp stings.

  • Locate the wasps' nest. This may be difficult as the nest may be located in the eaves of a house, a chimney head or in a hole in a wall.
  • Wasp powder/spray can be bought from garden centres and DIY stores. You should buy wasp powder if the nest is easily accessible or a spray treatment if the nest is difficult to reach.

Several precautions must be taken when carrying out treatment:

  • Wear protective clothing and head gear
  • Make sure that clothing fits tightly around the ankles, wrists and neck and that no skin is exposed
  • Treat wasps nests after dark when the wasps are less active
  • Make sure that a safe "escape route" is available if treating in a confined space, for example, attic
  • Always follow the manufacturers' instructions
  • Please note that unless the queen wasp is killed the nest may survive.

Old wasp nests are not reused by young queen wasps. New nests are built at the start of each breeding session.


Cockroaches

Report a pest control issue using the form under the Related Links section of this page.  Pest Control will visit, treat the infestation and give advice on preventing any recurrence.

Cockroaches are found in kitchens, bin areas and drainage systems and feed on refuse and human debris. They can hide in narrow cracks in walls, furniture and so on, during the day and are normally seen at night when they come out to feed and drink. They move quickly and can easily climb rough surfaces.

Cockroach infestations in the Renfrewshire area are relatively rare. They can be mistaken for some garden insects such as the Devil's Coach-horse. A live or intact specimen helps with identification.


Fleas

The vast majority of fleas found in households are cat or dog fleas. Human flea infestations are rare in comparison.

  • If you have a pet cat or dog, have it checked for fleas.
  • Treat your pet with a flea treatment which you can buy from pet shops or your vet.
  • Check pet bedding, baskets and if necessary treat or replace them.
  • Clean an infested room thoroughly i.e. vacuuming of carpets and soft furnishings. This will pick up adult fleas, larvae and eggs and also potential food sources. Kill the adult fleas with powder placed inside the vacuum bag.
  • After cleaning apply an approved powder or spray to affected areas following the manufacturers' instructions.
  • The early stages in the flea life cycle i.e. egg, larval and pupal are more resistant to treatment so additional treatments may be needed.

Bed bugs

Bed bugs are found in bedding, mattresses, frames or in close proximity (for example skirting boards) to where a person sleeps.

Contact a pest control officer (see contact details below) who will carry out a positive identification. The pest control officer will also carry out treatment and give advice on eradication.

Report a pest control issue using the form under the Related Links section of this page.


Ants (Information Only)

Ants feed on sugary foods and food crumbs so you can help to control them by keeping your house interior clean. This may also apply to patio areas.

  • Locate the ant nest. This can be difficult as it may be located in sub-floor areas, wall cavities, below outbuildings, paving slabs and so on.
  • Purchase ant powder from a garden centre or DIY store.
  • Following the manufacturers' instructions, apply the powder to the nest entrance and to areas where ant trails can be seen.
  • Fill any entry points and gaps in external walls, stairs and so on.

Please note that unless the queen ant is killed the nest will continue to survive.


Beetles

  • Collect a live or intact dead sample of the beetle to help the pest control officer to make a positive identification and identify the correct treatment
  • Report a pest control issue using the form under the Related Links section of this page. A pest control officer will visit your home or premises, carry out treatment and/or give advice.

Woodlice / slaters (Information Only)

Woodlice are a common garden insect which are totally harmless. They are commonly found under bricks, stones and slabs in the garden.

  • If they are in the house, check the interior for any damp conditions, for example, leaking/dripping water pipes, rotted wood, overflows running and carry out the necessary repairs or replacements
  • Check adjoining garden areas such as paths, patios, flower beds, sheds and remove any accumulations of old wood, slabs or rotted vegetation from around the external house walls.
  • Carry out any necessary proofing. For example, defective window pointing or putty work should be attended to.
  • Crawling insect spray can be bought from most garden centres and DIY stores and should be used following the manufacturers' instructions.