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Pest Management


The presence of rats may be detected by 'droppings', 'rat runs', 'eaten foods' or damage to food containers.

How to Remove Rats from Your Property

Trapping and poisoning will kill rats on your premises, but this is only a temporary measure as rats will return if favourable conditions for existence persist. For complete extermination and protection against reinfestation, rats must be deprived of food and shelter.

How to Deny Rats Food

  • Place all food scraps in a container with a close fitting lid. If compost bins are used, keep the base of the bin clear of any vegetation and don't throw meat or dog faeces into the compost bin.
  • Keep fowl yards clear of all waste products.
  • Keep poultry and animal food in metal bins with tight fitting lids.
  • Where there are fruit and nut trees, regularly clean up any fallen fruit or nuts.

Rat Control Fact Sheet (149 kb)

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European Wasps

European WaspThe European wasp is most easily identifiable by:

  • Its black and yellow body;
  • Its yellow legs; and
  • Triangular markings on the abdomen.

While the European wasp is the same size as the bee (10 - 15mm), it is less hairy and folds it's wings back at rest. Unlike the bee, a European wasp can sting multiple times. If left undisturbed the European wasp is not aggressive to humans or other animals.

The following tips should be followed to prevent European wasps being attracted to your property:

  • Do not leave fallen fruit or food scraps lying around your yard
  • Avoid leaving uneaten pet food or dog bones outside;
  • Make sure rubbish bins have tight fitting lids;
  • Keep compost covered at all times;
  • Keep your swimming pool covered when not in use;
  • Cover exposed food at picnics and barbeques;
  • Don't drink out of cans or bottles - use clear containers or a straw.

The following tips should be followed to locate a European wasp nest:

  • Establish the direction the wasps are flying by place a food source (ie meat or pet food) in a visible location;
  • Once the wasp has collected the food, it will fly IN A DIRECT LINE TO THE NEST;
  • A wasp may be scavenging for food up to 500m from the nest;
  • Keep relocating the food sources in the direction of the nest;
  • You may need to work co-operatively with your NEIGHBOURS.

Nests are located where shelter is available. The most common location for nests is UNDERGROUND and nests will be evident by a stream of wasps entering and leaving a hole in the ground. Nests are also found in retaining WALLS, hollows of TREES and wall cavities. The nest is made of grey paper mache type material. Nests constructed of mud are NOT European wasp nests

Once you have located the European wasp nest, contact The City of Charles Sturt during business hours for arrangements to be made for the destruction of the nest on 8408 1111.

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Mosquitoes are not only a nuisance in the summer months, but also have the potential to transmit disease.

The most effective way to control mosquito populations is to eliminate breeding sites. Mosquitoes like to breed in stagnant and undisturbed water bodies.  Therefore it is important that stagnant water bodies, such as the base of pot plants, bird baths and ponds are emptied or water replenished on a regular basis to prevent mosquito breeding.  Mosquitoes will not breed in chlorinated waters, for example, swimming pools, or well stocked fish ponds as the fish will consume the mosquito larvae before they hatch.

In addition to eliminating breeding sites, people can protect themselves from mosquito bites by implementing self-protection measures. These may include:

  • Wear loose fitting light coloured clothing that covers the majority of the body
  • Use insect repellent sprays, coils, candles or similar products
  • Fit insect screens (1mm) to all windows and entry points on your home

More specific control measures are detailed in the mosquito control information sheet:

Fight The Bite - Mosquitoes (576 kb)

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How to Keep Your House Cockroach Free

Cockroaches move into people's houses because it is easy to find food, water, and warm dark places to hide. Prevention is the key to keeping your house cockroach free. Without food and water, cockroaches won't survive, and won't want to live in your house.

Kitchen and Food:

  • Always wipe kitchen and food preparation areas clean
  • Store all food in containers with lids
  • Don't leave dirty dishes out overnight
  • Keep food and sticky drinks away from computers/keyboards


  • Keep lids closed on rubbish bins
  • Empty rubbish to the outside bin regularly
  • Regularly recycle newspapers, magazines and cardboard boxes
  • Keep outdoor areas clean and free of rubbish


  • Fix dripping taps
  • Remove other water sources

Hiding Spots:

  • Check and clean surfaces underneath and behind appliances (e.g. toaster, microwave, fridge) regularly
  • Fill cracks and crevices that can provide shelter

Treating an Infestation

Treatments are available from most supermarkets and hardware stores, and can include:

  • Surface sprays
  • Dusts
  • Baits and traps
  • Commercial Pest Control

Cockroach Control (104 kb)

For more information on any of the above pests, contact Environmental Health on 8408 1111.

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Our staff have noticed the appearance of puffer fish along our coast as a part of our regular beach patrols. The puffer fish were spotted mostly along Henley Beach and Henley Beach South and towards the mouth of the Torrens. Often puffer fish are washed up naturally, however it is also common for them to be caught by recreational fishers along the beach.

In response, we have asked our beach crews to keep an eye out for further fish and remove any they see from the beach. Puffer fish are highly toxic and dangerous to humans and pets. We also encourage anyone who catches a puffer fish to dispose of it responsibly in a bin, rather than discarding it on the beach.

If you do find you or your pet has come into contact with a pufferfish, the best action is to seek medical advice and take your pet to a vet immediately.

Please contact Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources: DEWNR on 8204 1910 for further information.

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