Running a restaurant takes a lot of time and effort. There are numerous tasks that you will need to think about daily and it can be difficult to prioritize operational practices in this high-stress and fast-paced environment. Unfortunately, if you are not cleaning properly or following preventative measures, you might find that your restaurant is infested with mice and other rodents who can spread diseases.
Signs of Rodents in Your Restaurant
You may not realize that you have a need for a rodent exterminator until the problem gets out of hand. In order to prevent possible health liabilities (Nebraska Food Code), inspection issues, and possible bad publicity, it is important to learn how to recognize the signs of a possible rodent infestation. If you notice any of the following signs of rodents in your restaurant, it is important to contact rodent control professionals to assess the problem and take immediate action.
Rodents are very oily and when they are traveling they will leave grease marks in their path. If you notice strange grease marks in different areas of your restaurant and you know that it is not from your deep fryer or other restaurant equipment, there is a good chance that rodents are to blame. Mice leave behind marks that are subtler than the ones that rats leave behind, but they can still be seen with the naked eye.
Damage to Packages
Perhaps one of the most noticeable signs that you might have a rodent problem in your restaurant is damage to the packages in your kitchen. Mice and rats like to nibble into packages such as boxes of grains, or bags of beans. The rodents are simply looking for something they can eat. If you do not secure these food sources, you are likely going to end up with unwanted guests in your kitchen. You might also notice gnaw marks on packages and other areas of your restaurant. Rodents like to chew on things and this is a sure sign that you might have a problem on your hands.
Droppings of Rodents in Your Restaurant
Perhaps one of the grossest signs that you might have a rodent infestation in your restaurant is droppings. Rodents tend to leave behind fecal matter as they are scavenging through an area. While these droppings are not something that you want to see, they can be quite helpful when you are trying to determine a rodent infestation. The areas where the droppings are found are typically where the pest control agent will focus his/her attention. If you notice droppings, you need to make sure that you call in the professionals. When you are running a restaurant it is simply too big of a risk to try to take care of the problem yourself.
Sounds and Smells
Rodents will not always announce their presence clearly. In a kitchen that is hot, noisy, and full of different sounds and smells, it can be hard to recognize an infestation. This is why it is important to be aware of everything going on in the kitchen before a meal rush. You do not want any subtle signs of a rodent infestation to go unnoticed. Mice have a stale and musky odor that comes from their urine. You might also notice small scratching sounds later in the evening. If you are hearing weird sounds and notice a musty or off odor in your restaurant, having an exterminator come check things out is recommended.
To prevent pests, it is important to make sure that you are keeping your restaurant as clean as possible. Store foods in containers that rodents cannot break into. If you notice any of the above signs, make sure that you call in a professional to help you determine and solve any rodent problems you might have.
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