Birmingham City Council are to axe five of their pest control services because nobody used them. The authority have ceased to provide services in relation to squirrels, mice, fleas and ants although they will still provide some alternatives. The decision was made by the Licensing and Public Committee this week prior to the pest control fees and charges being set for 2019/2020 next week. The prices for cockroach treatment have been slashed due to the demand halving since the fees were introduced in 2015. This comes after bosses scrapping plans to introduce a new charge for dealing with rats.
From April this year, the council will no longer provide its £102 service to provide advice to handle mice as well as implementing standard snap traps. It is thought that the reduction in demand is largely to do with cheaper alternatives being readily available in shops and on the internet. However, the council will still provide poison for free from neighbourhood offices.
While residents will no longer be able to call out pest control officers to put down sticky boards for rats at a charge of £36 which was introduced as a cheaper alternative to the regular treatment service. Although the fee for that is being slashed from £162 to £60.
Two services chopped relate to squirrels. The council charged £102 for standard squirrel proofing, which included lopping tree branches and putting down humane traps. A separate £102 fee was charged if officers had to come out to reset the trap.
Finally the authority is discontinuing its free service helping people including selling appropriate bait.
Mark Croxford, head of environmental health, said: “A number of services over the last few years haven’t been used. The most significant one is squirrels. We had a service there for many years to treat them in lofts. But it is very difficult from a health and safety point of view. I don’t think anyone has taken it up in the last five years.”