Plan to tackle pests this summer

2016-12-06 06:01
Residents should get ready for summer’s pests, the City warns.

Residents should get ready for summer’s pests, the City warns.

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The City of Cape Town’s environmental health department is ramping up its efforts to help control pests and associated diseases this summer.

According to a statement by Mayco member for health, Siyabulela Mamkeli, with the onset of the warmer weather pests like flies, cockroaches, mice and rats are multiplying as a result of the favourable breeding conditions.

He says while pests are an inconvenience that affects most households, they can also introduce potentially harmful diseases if not managed properly.

Mamkeli says flies are another common sight with similar risks. A single female fly can lay up to 600 eggs in organic or decaying matter like wet food waste, compost heaps and animal faeces from which maggots hatch within 48 hours.

The maggots then pupate and the adult flies emerge. Flies spread diseases such as dysentery and gastro-enteritis.

There is also a risk of diseases like leptospirosis, which is transmitted by rodents.

“Household pests are a reality for all of us. While we might not be able to eliminate them completely, I do urge residents to be mindful of how they manage their waste – especially in the warmer months.

“ Flies, cockroaches and rodents flourish in waste, so I appeal to the public to consider how and where they’re disposing of household waste. Hand-washing also becomes even more important. We can’t assume that it’s second nature to everyone, yet it is one of the simplest ways of preventing the spread of germs,” he says.

A number of City departments are involved in pest management. Transport for Cape Town (TCT) fumigates the drainage infrastructure, the Human Settlements directorate provides fumigation services to rental stock residences, and City health is tasked with education and awareness, referring complaints and concerns to the relevant departments, rodent-baiting in informal settlements and some public spaces, and managing the increase in diarrhoea cases over the warmer months. V Residents can report any environmental health risks or concerns to the City’s call centre on 0860 103 089 or visit their nearest clinic or environmental health office. Private homeowners can also seek advice from the environmental health department.

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