It is said that for every mouse that is seen, there are hundreds more that are hidden from view.
Not such a reassuring thought. Pittsburgh restaurant managers and owners want to maintain their hard-earned reputations, increase traffic and say little for that hard-earned, all-important bottom line.
Rats are the worst nightmare a restaurant owner can be forced to deal with because so much is at stake.
Not only is their presence a final turn off for customers, they can also be a barrier to passing a safety inspection by the Board of Health.
With the possible exception of slithering snakes, few critters are more harmful than rats.
Believed to have evolved in the plains of China, their exact origin remains a mystery.
Their association with the Black Plague and other dreaded diseases that ravaged Europe in the 13th century made them critical to avoid and fear.
The presence of even one not only indicates many more, but prompts an immediate call to Pestco’s pest-control and pest-management experts.
Although rats love grain, they are opportunistic scavengers and will eat anything that crosses their path.
Their urine and faeces, which leave behind any uneaten food, cause serious damage.
They consume and contaminate foodstuffs and animal feed, causing structural damage to buildings and their foundations, roads, railways and irrigation canals.
Rats destroy a business reputation that took years to establish, their presence anywhere, but especially in a restaurant, can forever ruin its good standing in a community.
With the possible exception of mosquitoes, rats are considered to be carriers of more human diseases than any other animal.
Diseases they spread include: bubonic and pneumonic plague, murine typhus, salmonella, leptospirosis, hantavirus and tularemia.
Due to the fact that their teeth never grow from the moment they are born, rats chew everything all the time.
When they trip over electrical wires, the results can be devastating to buildings, causing fires and serious structural damage.
The restaurant industry and pest infestations
Pest control and pest management The issues are more challenging in a restaurant setting than in other commercial environments.
This is due to many unavoidable factors: namely, abundance of food; Ideal humidity levels and temperature conditions and many available hiding places.
Restaurants that are open 24 hours have an additional problem because the kitchen cannot be closed for periodic pest control treatments without significant loss of revenue.
Wherever there is food, there is the potential for rodent infestation, and restaurant owners and employees need to be aware of the risks and how to prevent them.
Strict inspections and pest management are the only solutions to eradicate invasive rodent pests.
Scientific advances are continually creating new, versatile products that can complement our highly effective integrated pest-control and pest-management programs.
They know how to adjust to the restaurant industry and often work late at night or early in the morning while the kitchen is being cleaned by a company’s janitorial staff, both out of respect for business operations and to maximize the effectiveness of medical applications. .
Pestco history and rodent control initiatives
we are one A leading provider of long-term and emergency pest-control, pest management and extermination solutions services for commercial and industrial spaces located throughout Greater Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania.
Family-run, this five-star business is a godsend for establishments such as: restaurants; hotel; hospital; schools and universities; health care facilities; salons and spas and office and apartment complexes.
Their integrated rodent pest control program balances conventional baiting and trapping methods with environmental management and pest exclusion techniques. Pestco is the only company of its kind that manufactures eco-friendly products that it employs in everyday applications.
Chemical treatments are not encouraged but when they are required, technicians always ensure the safety of the environment and all people and pets that may be affected.
Technicians first thoroughly inspect an affected structure and then eliminate rodent food and shelter sources by sealing potential entry points.
These include foundation cracks, poorly sealed vents, drain pipes and other access points that may not be properly sealed.
Our complete facility care program
This three-pronged, integrated hygiene-control initiative offers pest management and control services, environmental odor control and air freshening techniques. Air-cent International At all commercial and industrial locations operating in Pittsburgh and western PA.
This vast array of professional services is efficient, cost-effective and highly recommended for restaurant owners and managers.
What rat species are found in Pittsburgh?
Although there are essentially three rat species in the Pittsburgh area, only one is commonly associated with restaurants.
Deer and roof rats are mostly found in barns and attic spaces, but the highly aggressive Norway rat is often the bane of many Pittsburgh foods.
It is believed that these critters found their way to America aboard a sailing ship around 1775.
According to Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, This species was first brought to England from Norwegian timber ships and is the source of its name.
This species is not known for its agility and their vision is poor, but they are persistent and have been known to penetrate structures through openings as small as ½ inch.
Their sharp teeth can chew through almost anything including: metal, concrete, plastic garbage cans, insulation and electrical wires, often causing fires.
They nest near garbage and breed in basements, under sidewalks, and near streams and rivers.
In some third world countries, it is estimated that Norway rats destroy 15 percent or more of agricultural production each year.
The Norway rat is usually brown in color and averages about 11 ounces in weight.
They can grow up to 18 inches long at maturity, including the tail.
They reproduce quickly and a female can give birth to up to 22 young in a litter.
That’s why it’s so important that Pittsburgh restaurant owners contact our pest-control and pest maintenance experts immediately if they see a rat scurrying across floors and cupboards. Pestco Professional Services.
1. Norway rats communicate with each other in different ways.
This species is known to use vocal and visual gestures to communicate with each other.
2. Norway rats do not have collapsible skeletons
Although young mice have the ability to crawl through very small spaces, Norway mice have skeletons made of bone and cartilage, like other mammals.
Large adult mice cannot fit through such apertures.
3. Norway rats have multiple mates
Both women and men have multiple partners within a given group.
Females reach sexual maturity at four months and males at three months.
Although breeding increases during the warmer months of the year, it is not seasonal.
A female can mate again within 18 hours of giving birth and can mate 500 times with multiple males within these six hours.
They are known to have about seven litters a year.
4. Norway rat droppings half an inch long
According to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, a Norway rat can produce up to 50 droppings per day.
5. Norway rats prefer foods high in carbohydrates or protein
Although their preferred diet includes grains, meat and fish, nuts and some types of fruit, they will eat almost anything. including non-food items such as soap.
They are particularly attracted to wet and dry pet food, and food items left in storage and garbage areas provide a fairly balanced diet and meet their moisture needs.
6. Norway rats live in burrows
Their burrows are 12 to 18 inches underground, and about 10 inches in diameter. They are easily recognized by the “mouse run” directed towards the opening.
Norway rats can burrow through cement foundations, causing major damage to buildings. Concrete barriers can be buried to prevent rodents from burrowing under the foundation.
Restaurants closed in Pittsburgh and Allegheny counties
Foodies face a nightmare when dealing with a rat infestation on the evening news.
Voted once Pittsburgh City Paper As one of the top Asian restaurants and named twice in 2012 and 2013 Pittsburgh Magazine As one of the best restaurants in town, Nicky’s Thai KitchenA few years ago the Allegheny Health Department was forced to close after discovering a significant rat infestation and a host of other shocking health code violations.
The inspection report indicated the presence of a dead mouse inside a cooking pot and the presence of old droppings found on wooden platforms used for transporting goods and inside food boxes and along the walls of the basement.
Sun Penang, an Asian restaurant in Squirrel Hill that serves boxed lunches to nearby college campuses, was hit with a consumer warning once issued by the Allegheny County Health Department for numerous health code violations.
First, the restaurant was operating without a permit and food was being prepared and transported without regard to proper holding temperature.
Other violations included: the presence of rodent nests on a storage shelf near a stand mixer and water heater, cornstarch droppings and crumpled bags on the carpeted stairs leading from the dining room to the upstairs restroom.
The Allegheny County Health Department has identified some college dining halls and cafeterias as serious rat problem areas.
An inspection revealed evidence of rats in the food storage area of Pete’s Cathedral Cafe. Inspectors observed a “chewed sushi rice bag and “packages of chewed sugar and old nesting material” inside a cream dispensing cabinet, along with droppings.
This dining facility was cited for multiple health violations.
According to Food Inspection Manager, Donna Scharding: “There have to be at least two violations that are considered very high risk by the Centers for Disease Control and they have to be significant…and be in what we call the danger zone.”
If you are a Pittsburgh restaurant owner or manager and rodents have infested your establishment, call our team at Pestco immediately and don’t despair.
We are here to help!
Final Thoughts on Rats: Crouching through a dyke, even a mouse can drown a nation ~Edmund Burke
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