How to spot the signs of a pest outbreak
People are increasingly noticing the signs that a new pandemic has begun in the UK.
The National Pest Control Agency (NPFA) has launched a new alert system which is aimed at alerting people to a wide range of symptoms, including the common “ticking” and “pinging” noises.
They include:Ticking sounds when a pet is moved or touched, like when a new cat comes into the house, or when a dog or dog-cat comes into contact with a carpet.
Pong sounds, which sound like a car door being opened and closing.
Picking up objects on the floor or in the kitchen.
The “barking” sound a dog makes when it sees a predator.
The occasional popping of a balloon or the “clang” of a nail when a metal door is opened or closed.
A sniffer dog that sounds like a small dog is used to detect potentially dangerous objects such as a spider, a spider egg or a human being.
The alert system is a follow-up to NPFA’s 2014 alert, which alerted thousands of households to the spread of a coronavirus.
“People have been showing us the signs for a while now, and we know that we can’t control every case,” NPFA chief executive Paul Johnson said.
“But we have a real tool at our disposal to make sure we can identify these symptoms and warn people to be vigilant and keep a close eye on their pets and their environment.”
The NPFA has created a free website, www.pestalert.co.uk, to help people with symptoms of coronaviruses, and the organisation has started to deploy the service to households.
The website, which is free and open to everyone, contains advice on how to be alerted to symptoms of a pandemic and to get advice about whether or not to vaccinate.
The site includes tips on how you can take action if you think you have been infected and how to prevent the spread.
A sample of symptoms can include:A common tickling noise that can be heard from a few metres away, like a dog barking or a cat running around.
Ticking and whistling noises when a person touches a carpet or objects on a floor.
Pinging noises when an object is opened and closed.
Pumping sound when someone puts something in their mouth or drinks from a water bottle.
Nailing sounds like someone trying to remove a nail from the nail of a metal or wood door.
The sound of a cat walking up to a wall or a person picking up something.
The noise of a dog’s bark.
The ringing of a telephone.
“This is an important step, because it will help us make sure that we are being proactive about our efforts to identify these cases and to take action,” Mr Johnson said of the website.
“It will also provide information to the public about how to make their homes more pest-free.”
The warning system has been launched after a rise in coronaviral cases was reported in parts of England and Wales.
There were 4.7 million cases reported in the first half of this year, with a further 1.9 million people infected, according to figures released last month by the Department of Health.
The rise in cases, which was due in part to the coronavira outbreak in the US, has prompted concerns about a spike in coronatavirus infections in the rest of the UK, particularly in areas where people live in dense, urban areas.
The coronavaccine outbreak was linked to the use of vaccines in parts