Pests are typically a nuisance to humans, hence their name.
However, some pests are capable of causing more than just damage and mess to properties by spreading diseases.
There are many diseases carried by pests in Scotland, so we’ve listed the main pests that pose the most danger.
Rodents are top of the list for spreading diseases. These pests are much larger and come into contact with humans much more as they like living where there’s food, shelter, and water. The most common disease they spread is salmonella, often leading to food poisoning.
Birds transmit diseases through their faeces. There are over 50 diseases that birds can spread, but avian flu and E Coli are the most common. They also carry ticks which can fall off when a bird nests, so ticks could end up in your home if they nest nearby.
Ticks are notorious for spreading Lyme disease, which causes fatigue, fever and joint pain. Bacteria carried by ticks cause this. They’re also known to have viruses as well as bacteria.
Cockroaches are another health hazard primarily found in food areas, such as cafes and restaurants. When cockroaches contaminate food, humans are at risk of diarrhoea, dysentery, or even leprosy in some countries.
Cockroaches’ skin contains allergens that can trigger human allergies and asthma attacks.
Flea infestations are a health hazard due to typhus and the bubonic plague risk. Fleas can also spread Bartonella, typically spread from cats to humans. Fleas affect your pets as well.
Flies are notorious for carrying many harmful bacteria, leading to typhoid fever, cholera, and E Coli. The bacteria are contained in their stomach, and they vomit the bacteria onto food to dissolve and eat it again. So when flies land on your food, there’s a chance that bacteria are already on the food too.
You might think that seeing one or two pests is harmless. However, insects and rodents can multiply and spread quickly, causing an infestation to get out of control.
Once you spot a pest, contact a pest control expert for further advice and solutions to eradicate the problem.