Edinburgh worst for mice call-outs in Scotland

Call-outs to deal with mice jumped 13 per cent in a single year across Scotland. Picture: contributed

Call-outs to deal with mice jumped 13 per cent in a single year across Scotland. Picture: contributed

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CAPITAL pest controllers receive more call-outs per head of population than any other city in Scotland for mice, it has been revealed.

New league tables highlight how Edinburgh pest control workers dealt with 5.13 call-outs per 1000 of population last year. And the Capital was the third worst region in Scotland for mice, behind Clackmannanshire with 6.57 and North Lanarkshire with 5.9.

Carried out by The British Pest Control Association, the survey lists the worst-affected 15 councils in Scotland for pest reports in 2012.

The survey also reveals that Scottish pest control workers requests to deal with birds has risen from 1318 in 2011, to 1765 last year – an increase of 33 per cent. Edinburgh was ranked sixth overall for bird problems.

In total, the results show a 13 per cent jump in the number of call-outs to deal with mice, up from 13,000 in 2011 to almost 14,000 last year.

Some experts say the rise in reports about birds is down to gulls increasingly moving into urban areas near the coast for food. There have been accounts of people being attacked in Angus by scavenging gulls and the council used hawks and 
falcons in an attempt to keep people safe.

The Capital has had its own long-running problem with gulls in areas such as Leith and Bruntsfield, with homeowners complaining of rubbish being left strewn all over the road, early-morning wake-up calls, and even being attacked by the birds.

Laurence Barnard, of the British Pest Control Association, said the rise in call-outs was not necessarily a bad thing, as it meant problems were being dealt with. But he also warned the survey showed the number of council pest-controllers in Scotland had dropped from 93 to 83. He said: “An increased pest activity can be due to a number of reasons, most notably the weather. I would be more concerned about councils not providing service and leaving their residents to deal with pest problems themselves.”

david.oleary@edinburghnews.com