Pest control

Pests within the home are a nuisance and can be a health hazard.

We do not offer pest control services, but there are a number of resources and organisations who may be able to help you inf you need to deal with a pest problem.

Reporting a Pest Problem

The Environmental Health team has specific legal powers within the Prevention of Damage by Pests Act 1949 and the Environmental Protection Act 1990, to take steps to ensure that owners and occupiers of land keep their land free from large numbers of rats and mice. The legislation provides the Council with powers to require the owner or occupier of land infested by rats or mice to take any steps that are deemed to be necessary to deal with the infestation.

Selby District Council does not currently offer a pest control service, if you believe that you have a problem with pests affecting your property it is recommended that you seek the advice of a pest control specialist. If it is not possible to eradicate the problem at your premises due to the infestation arising from adjacent premises, then the Council may be able to help. In order for the Council to investigate we would usually require evidence, ideally this would be a report from your pest control specialist identifying the likely source of infestation. Please note that we are unable to investigate complaints in domestic premises where the source of the infestation is unknown.

Issues that would generally not be enforceable for the team under the above legislation include reports where rats have been witnessed on land, overgrown gardens or build-up of inert waste (such as fridges, car parts, builders rubble, scrap iron, broken glass). Also, we are unable to investigate odour from domestic premises due to its exclusion from statutory nuisance provisions.

Preventing Pest Infestations

You should ensure that your property is free of potential food sources and harbourage sites. You should also:

  • keep your garden clean and tidy
  • clear up any windfall fruit immediately
  • do not put out excessive amounts of food for birds. Use a special bird feeder and regularly sweep up any food that spills onto the ground.
  • keep rubbish in proper containers with lids on until the day of collection.
  • place compost bins over galvanised steel mesh and ensure that the lid is tightly fitted

Pest control advice for householders​

You can treat most common pests yourself using:

  • powders
  • sprays
  • foams

You can also deal with vermin such as mice and rats by using traps.

These products are widely available from supermarkets, garden centres and hardware stores.

The British Pest Control Association (BPCA)  provides an A to Z of pests with advice on how to deal with different insects and animals.

Dealing with pests safely
When treating pests yourself, make sure you follow the manufacturer's instructions and Health and Safety best practice at all times.

Pesticides are poisonous, so make sure you:

  • avoid ingestion, inhalation or contact with skin
  • keep children and animals away from sprayed areas until completely dry, and away from solid bait
  • do not use pesticides on food preparation surfaces or in food cupboards

Pest control organisations
When choosing a pest controller, make sure you use a reputable service provider.

The BCPA can help you find a pest controller which follows their code of conduct.

If bait is used, your pest controller will need to visit a few times to inspect the bait and keep it topped up. They should also carry out a final inspection once the programme is complete to ensure no bait is left behind.

If rodent poisons are used, your pest controller should carry out an environmental assessment to consider the possible threats to wildlife and domestic animals. Find out more about responsible use of poisons by visiting Think Wildlife.