Every food premises should have a pest control plan. The Ontario Food Premises Regulation requires every food premise to be protected against the entry of pests and kept free of conditions that lead to the harbouring or breeding of pests. Having a pest control plan is a very important step in operating a food premises. If pest control issues are not addressed, infestations can contaminate food or food contact surfaces which may result in a health hazard and cause illness.
Below is some information to assist operators identify and prevent pests. Toronto Public Health recommends consulting with a licensed pest control operator for additional information and support regarding integrated pest management and other pest control issues.
Cockroaches are common insects that can be found in almost any place in a structure. They prefer a warm and damp environment. Look for them in or near water pipes, cracks and crevices, in kitchen cabinets and cupboards, behind and around fridges and stoves, near and in garbage containers, in cardboard and around appliances such as proofers, microwave ovens, toasters, coffee machines.
Cockroaches are nocturnal, they like to come out at night. Cockroaches may appear in the day time if there is a heavy infestation, if they are disturbed, or if there has been a recent pest control treatment.
|Types of cockroaches||Size
|Identifying features/colour||Lifespan||# of egg cases per lifetime||# of eggs per egg case|
|10-15 mm||Two parallel long stripes on head area. Light to dark brown.||125-150 days||7||38|
|Oriental||25-32 mm||Dark reddish brown to shiny black.||2 years||8-14||16|
|American||34-53 mm||Largest. Reddish brown.||2 years||10-15||16|
|10-14 mm||Bands across wings. Pale brown.||120 days||14||16|
The best method of controlling these pests is through integrated pest management. This can include preventative practices, monitoring, closing up holes in walls and floors, and responsible application of pesticides. Licensed pest control companies can be found by doing an internet search. If you choose to correct the pest problem on your own several steps need to be taken. By using a combination of these steps, they may eliminate the infestation.
“House” mice generally stay within 10 to 30 feet of their nests. They can live anywhere throughout a structure, but the main areas include: inside walls, in between floors and cupboards or under counters. Signs of a mouse infestation may include any of the following: mouse droppings, tracks or footprints, gnaw marks, rub marks, burrows, runways or damaged goods including food.
Mice have good senses except for sight as they can not see clearly beyond six inches (15 cm). Mice are capable of squeezing through an opening as small as 1/4 of an inch or 6 mm in diameter. They are excellent climbers and can run up most roughened walls. Mice can swim, jump approximately twelve inches high (30.5 cm) and can jump down from about eight feet high (2.5 m).
A mouse needs about 1/10 ounce (2.8 grams) of dry food and 1/20 ounce (1.5 ml) of water every day. Mice are nibblers and eat only small amounts of food at any one time or place. One mouse will produce about 50 droppings each day. A mouse will normally live less than a year.
|Weight||15 grams or 1/2 to 3/4 ounce|
|Body length||85 mm or 3.3 inches|
|Tail length||90 mm or 3.5 inches|
|Colour||Fur is brownish grey above and light grey underneath|
|Tail||Dark, slightly longer than body|
|Droppings||Dark rod or spindle shaped (6 mm or 1/4 inches long)|
Rats can live in burrows (nests) under or near ground level, usually around buildings. Rats are excellent swimmers, climbers and jumpers.
Rats may travel up to 100 feet from their burrows. They are essentially night travelers but can be seen during the day, especially in heavy infestations. Rats are creatures of habit and will travel the same pathways to and from their burrows. They prefer tight, narrow, dark pathways that run along the side of buildings or fences but occasionally runways through tall grass may be seen. Signs of a rodent infestation may include any of the following: actual sightings of rats, rat droppings, holes or burrows in the ground, bite marks on wood, concrete, vegetables or garbage containers, tracks or pathways.
|Weight||200 to 480 grams or 7 to 17 ounces|
|Length||30 to 45 cm or 12 to 18 inches (including the tail)|
|Colour||Brown-grey back with white/grey belly (colour may vary)|
|Tail||Shorter than the body, 12 to 20 cm or 5 to 8 inches, dark with short hair|
|Droppings||Capsule shaped, often containing hairs, 2.5 to 3 cm or 3/4 of an inch long|
The best method of controlling these pests is through integrated pest management. This can include preventative practices, monitoring, closing up holes in walls and floors, and responsible application of pesticides. Licensed pest control companies can be found by doing an internet search. If you choose to correct the pest problem on your own several steps need to be taken. By using a combination of these steps, they may eliminate the mouse infestation.
If you chose to try to control the rats on your own, then the following should be done.