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Job Vacancies

Title:                     Full-time Pest Control Technician
Salary:                  £19,000 per annum
Hours per week    40 hours

Hinton Pest Control Ltd is expanding operations and is looking to recruit 2 new Pest Control Technicians.

 The successful applicant will have:

  • A minimum of 2 years’ experience as a Pest Control Technician.
  • A valid full driving licence
  • A minimum qualification of BPCA/RSPH Level 2 in Pest Control or Pest Management

The candidate needs to have:

  • Individual motivation
  • Be able to work unsupervised
  • Good communication skills

It would be advantageous to the candidate if they:

  • Are experienced in bird proofing and wildlife management
  • Hold a valid open ticket firearms licences (shotgun/rifle)
  • Possess licensed firearms (shotgun/rifle)
  • Are qualified in the Use of Aluminum Phosphide

To apply, please send your CV via email to liz@hintonpestcontrol.co.uk

Closing Date:  Friday 5th May 2017

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Honeybees: A Hive of Activity

We wouldn’t be surprised if this weekend’s warm weather triggers honeybees to swarm.  A honeybee colony has one queen at the heart of the colony.  At this time of year, virgin queens emerge & they leave the established colony.  These new queens usually take part of the colony with them as they leave.  This is known as “swarming” and is timed with warm weather so this may occur over the next few days.

Honeybee Swarm

Ready for collection

When they huddle like this, they are resting, warming up or regrouping during displacement and they can take off as quickly as they arrived.  If you see a balled mass of honeybees they will be in a peaceful state.  Please do not disturb them.  If threatened or attacked, the colony will become aggressive and potentially become a public health risk; anyone nearby can get stung by literally thousands of honeybees.

If honeybees gather in a rugby ball type tightly-knit mass, outside and within arm’s reach (i.e. not at height), contact the Worcestershire Bee Keepers’ Association here.  They will locate a bee keeper to collect the swarm.  Sometimes a bee colony can be collected and given to a new bee keeper just setting up or an existing bee keeper who may have lost a hive over winter.

If the honeybees land in a confused gathering on your wall, roof, in your garden etc (not a tight-knit ball) then they are taking a bit of time out to gather their thoughts during relocation.  They will take off as quickly as they arrived.

If honeybees seek shelter in a working chimney this week, whatever the weather, light a fire light a fire for at least 4 hours and continue to do so for 3-5 days so that the smoke discourages them from staying.  If not a working chimney, observe them for at least 7 days and hope that the colony chooses to leave.  If after 7 days, they are still in the chimney then the queen is likely to stay in the chimney and thus, the colony.

If they settle into the fabric of a building, a bee keeper will be unable to collect them.  Honeybees can cause structural damage to property over time.  Typically, they gather in a “cloud-like” formation close to the nest entrance.  They are social bees made up of thousands of individuals in the colony.  Call us on 01386 41762 to arrange a site survey if you need us.  We offer no guarantee of accepting bee work but we will try to problem solve for you, where we can.

 

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Bee Season Has Started

Hinton Pest Control have received lots of enquiries about bees recently, which means that bee season has started.  There are millions of species of insects and in the sunshine, they are all out and about doing their thing but only a handful of them become a pest which require pest control intervention.  So let’s talk about a group of bees, known as solitary bees,

Andrena cineraria - Ash Mining Bee

Andrena cineraria – Ash Mining Bee

At this time of year, these enquiries are about solitary bees of which there are more than 200 recorded species including mason, leaf-cutters, mining and carpenter bees.  They are individual bees that can appear in numbers.  As the name suggests, these insects do not live in colonies.  Most solitary bees are useful pollinators.  When they visit a flower, pollen is transferred onto the hairs on their abdomen.  This pollen gets transferred to other flowers of the same species as the bee travels around.  Many flowers are dependent on insects for pollination and without this service, they cannot set seeds.  Solitary bees, like bumblebees, can fly in cool or drizzly weather, unlike honeybees that stay at home during inclement weather.  Solitary bees can be important pollinators of fruit trees and bushes, which flower in the spring when poor weather often occurs.

The majority of ground nesting bees actually dig their own burrows, the spoil forms little soil “volcanos” around the burrow entrance in many cases.   If your lawn is affected in this way, just go over the soil with a stiff brush and spread it over the lawn.  This won’t cause a problem for the bees; they will find the revised entrance, clean out any soil that got pushed in to the burrow and carry on with things.  They will only be with you for a few weeks and then you won’t see them again until next year in March / April.  Hinton Pest Control Ltd does not provide pest control for solitary bees.

An excavation made by an Ash Mining Bee.

An excavation made by an Ash Mining Bee.

 

 

 

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Worcestershire firm hits European quality mark!

A WORCESTERSHIRE company has become one of the first in the country to achieve a new accreditation promoting professional standards in pest control. The European Standard for Pest Management Services acts as a demonstration of credentials and a benchmark of quality throughout Europe. Hinton Pest Control, based in the Vale of Evesham, this week became only the fourth company in the UK to achieve the standard.

Team HPC

Liz Davies, Managing Director of Hinton Pest Control, with Senior Pest Technician Tim Cubberley (left) and Technical Director Steven Blount (right).

Hinton Pest Control is a family-run business that provides pest control services across Worcestershire, South Warwickshire, The Cotswolds and North Gloucestershire. Liz Davies, Managing Director of Hinton Pest Control, is confident the accreditation, which is independently assessed, will help her team to stand out from the crowd. She said: “This certification delivers a real proof of quality, so the fact we’re among the first in the UK to be accredited is a real feather in our cap. We are a small family-run company which focuses on great customer service, but it’s very important for us to demonstrate our professional credentials & technical expertise and this provides independent proof of that.”

Mrs Davies, who has also been shortlisted in two categories at the Wonderful Worcestershire Women Awards 2016, added: “It was a lot of hard work to achieve the certification because the auditing process was a tough audit process that differentiates Hinton Pest Control from others; the standard is extremely difficult to achieve for a small business. But we’re members of the British Pest Control Association (BPCA) and they steered us in the right direction. We know it will be worth the effort in the end.”

The EN16636 Standard, and its accompanying certification scheme, was launched earlier this year by the Confederation of European Pest Management Associations (CEPA). It defines quality and best practice and acts as an assurance that member companies are fully qualified to deal with all species of both rodents and insects and experts on integrated pest management, the use of chemicals and health and safety issues. The Standard is the cornerstone of a strategy to portray a positive image of the pest control industry in terms of public health, food safety, environmental sustainability and economic significance.

Simon Forrester, Chief Executive of the BPCA, believes the move will deliver significant benefits for Hinton. He said: “We know of many pest controllers who are untrained and do not stay up-to-date with the latest products, techniques and legislation – and that’s something which can create big problems. But this award demonstrates that Hinton Pest Control is on a level playing field with the very best pest management companies in the world and businesses and individuals using their services can be totally confident of a thoroughly professional job.”

Mrs Davies is in the running for Female-Owned Business of the Year and Significant Achievement of the Year at the Wonderful Worcestershire Women Awards – an initiative to celebrate the business success of women throughout the county. The public vote is open until 26 February 2016 here http://wonderfulworcestershirewomen.co.uk/award-categories/ The winners will be announced in an event at Worcestershire County Cricket Club on Friday, April 29.

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Chickens & Rat Control

 

Image showing chickens feeding indoors

Chickens feeding indoors

Keeping chickens at home is becoming more popular; in fact, we have a small flock of chickens. The eggs are fresh and our children enjoy looking after them. However, owning a pest control company, we are aware that poultry husbandry can actively encourage rats that are opportunistic feeders, into the area. Rats will steal food, eggs & chicks, if they can get to them.

Further information can be found in Hinton Pest Control’s Chickens and Rat Control Leaflet 2015 

Recent studies in Canada indicate that rats can absorb disease agents from their local environment such as E. coli  The full article can be read here.

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Wonderful Worcestershire Women Awards 2016

Receiving nominee certificates

Liz Davies, short-listed for two awards

Our Managing Director, Liz Davies was recently nominated for two local awards: Female-Owned Business of the Year and Significant Achievement of the Year.   At the Wonderful Worcestershire Women Awards 2016 launch on 12 January, Liz was delighted to find out that she had been short-listed and selected to take part in a public vote in the next round of the awards.

Here is Liz’s short biography to support her nomination for these awards:

“I’m a woman living & working in Worcestershire who has previous experience of:
-  working in male-dominated industries,
-  being a full-time working mother,
-  volunteering in my community,
-  the security of a salaried role;  and yet I took that leap of faith with my own family business.

If I hadn’t tried, I would have always had regrets. I want to demonstrate to other women that it’s possible to juggle many facets of modern day life, love your family, build your business and serve your community whilst performing to the best of your abilities. You CAN make a difference.”

The team at Hinton Pest Control Ltd would love it if you showed your support for Liz & Hinton Pest Control Ltd in this next round by voting for her in both categories (Votes limited to one vote only in each category).

To take part in the public vote for all categories, click Public Vote for Wonderful Worcestershire Women Awards

Further details about #WWWAwards2016 can be found here Wonderful Worcestershire Women Website

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Pest Prevention Boost for Worcestershire Food Banks

Hinton Pest Control Ltd is owned by husband and wife team, Steven Blount and Liz Davies.  Hinton Pest Control adopted their own family values which are reflected in their dedication to customer care, service delivery & supporting local communities.  Click here to read about Hinton Pest Control’s pro bono work for local food banks across Worcestershire and The Cotswolds, as part of National Pest Prevention Week (Nov 9-14).

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Redditch Restaurant Fined for Mouse Infestation

A restaurant owner in Redditch which had a mouse infestation in a rear storeroom was fined £2,500 last week.  The offences related to a storeroom and included failing to ensure the premises were kept clean, failing to protect food against contamination and failing to have in place adequate procedures to control pests.  The full article can be viewed by clicking here

Hinton Pest Control Ltd undertakes commercial work for a variety of clients including businesses such as food retailers, hotels, airports, motoring, warehouses, offices, food distributors, seed merchants, manufacturers, farms, leisure facilities, retail markets etc.

Having an annual contract with regular routine pest control visits enables businesses to be proactive against rodents as a preventative measure, rather than reactive which could potentially damage your business reputation.

Whatever your primary business concern may be about pests e.g. food safety and hygiene, reputation, public health, accreditation schemes, protection of stored food or even cables in a server room, Hinton Pest Control Ltd can offer you a service level agreement that meets the needs of your business.  If your business would like a free site survey and a written pest control proposal, call us on 01386 41762 and we’ll be happy to help you.

 

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What Flying Insect Am I?

At this time of year, we are preparing ourselves for various insect seasons.  There are millions of species of insects and in the sunshine, they are all out and about doing their thing but only a handful of them become a pest which require pest control intervention.  An approximate timeline of these seasons may help you to identify which insect you have and their behaviour, which in itself can be reassuring.

Red Mason Bee

Red Mason Bee using an existing hole

March/April – We receive enquiries about solitary bee activity of which there are more than 200 recorded species.  They are individual bees that can appear in numbers.  These insects do not live in colonies, they will lay their eggs in an existing hole in a building and then they will backfill it with vegetation, leaving soon after.  As soon as the larvae emerge, they will eat their way out and as adults, they too will leave.  They do not sting.  Most Mason Bees nest in existing cavities which is why they take so easily to “bee hotels” that many people put up in their gardens.  The majority of ground nesting bees actually dig their own burrows, the spoil forms little soil “volcanos” around the burrow entrance in many cases.   If your lawn is affected in this way, just go over the soil with a stiff brush and spread it over the lawn.  This won’t cause a problem for the bees; they will find the revised entrance, clean out any soil that got pushed in to the burrow and carry on with things.  They will only be with you for a few weeks and then you won’t see them again until next year in March / April.  Hinton Pest Control Ltd does not provide pest control for solitary bees.

Bumble Bee | Hinton Pest Control

Bumblebee

April / May – We anticipate bumblebee enquiries.  Of the 250 known species, 25 are found in the UK but only 6 of these are a familiar sight in our gardens.  At Hinton Pest Control, we actively encourage people to live along side these beautiful and docile creatures who are temporary lodgers that do not cause any damage to a property.  They are social bees that have an average number of about 40-50 individuals in the colony.  Individuals will only sting as a last resort if they feel threatened and will die shortly afterwards.

 

Occasionally we relocate them if they have nested in a bird box but otherwise we leave them alone where possible.

Honey Bee | Hinton Pest Control

Honeybee

April/May/June – We anticipate honeybee enquiries.  We work closely with the Worcestershire Bee Keeper Association to collect displaced swarms but if they are in the fabric of the building, it is unlikely that a beekeeper can assist.  Honeybees can cause structural damage if they have been in situ for a while.  Typically, they will gather in a “cloud-like” formation close their entrance to the nest.  They are social bees that can be made up of thousands of individuals in the colony.  Individuals and other nearby individuals can sting if they feel threatened and will die shortly afterwards.  Honey Bees are tricky in pest control terms and although we offer no guarantee of accepting the work, we do try to problem solve for our clients.  A full survey is required before any treatment can be attempted.  Sometimes they are easily dealt with but sometimes it ends up as a two person job requiring a number of treatments plus the skills of builders to remove honeycomb & seal the treatment area.

 

Wasp | Hinton Pest Control

Vespula vulgaris

May/June/July/August/September – This is wasp/hornet season and all species of social wasp, they are treated as pests when they come into conflict with people.  These social wasps can contain a few hundred individuals (and sometimes a few thousand later on in the season) in the colony.  Wasps will sting and they can sting repeatedly but they don’t necessarily die.  Worker wasps die from starvation in the autumn/winter and new Queen Wasps go off to hibernate, leaving the nest empty.  The Queen Wasps will make a brand new nest in the spring and leave old nests uninhabited which will gradually crumble and disintegrate.   Hinton Pest Control Ltd routinely provides pest control treatment for nests where there is wasp activity.

Further Information about the above species can be found by clicking the following links:

Hinton Pest Control Ltd

Bumblebees:   http://hintonpestcontrol.co.uk/index.php/we-encourage-people-to-live-alongside-bumblees-where-possible/
Honeybee and Wasp Comparison:  http://hintonpestcontrol.co.uk/index.php/is-it-a-honeybee-or-a-wasp/
Hornets:  http://hintonpestcontrol.co.uk/index.php/hornet-sightings-create-a-buzz/

Bumblebee Conservation Trust

Bumblebee Identification:  http://bumblebeeconservation.org/about-bees/identification/

Bees, Wasps & Ants Recording Society

BWARS Beginners:  http://www.bwars.com/index.php?q=content/beginners-bees-wasps-and-ants
BWARS Technical:  http://www.bwars.com/index.php?q=content/bees-britain

Royal Entomological Society

General Insects:  http://www.royensoc.co.uk/insect_info/what_is_it.htm
Solitary Bees:  http://www.royensoc.co.uk/insect_info/what/solitary_bees.htm?hc_location=ufi
Bumblebees:  http://www.royensoc.co.uk/insect_info/what/bumblebees.htm

Worcestershire Bee Keepers Association
Honey Bees:  http://www.wbka.net/

Wild About Gardens
Solitary Bee Hotels:  http://www.wildaboutgardens.org.uk/thingstodo/intwohours/build-a-bee-hotel.aspx