Control Flies with Integrated Pest Management

By Frank Meek International Technical & Training Director, Orkin, LLC | May 19, 2010

Whether it's lounging by the pool, enjoying dinner at a nice restaurant or just relaxing with a good book, your guests' favorite vacation activities can quickly be disrupted with the sound of an annoying "buzz..."

Besides serving as a nuisance, flies also pose serious health risks to your guests and staff. Since flies feed on feces and other decaying matter, they can carry up to a half billion bacteria on the outside of their bodies, including E. coli, Salmonella and Staphylococcus. In fact, flies are the No. 1 transmitters of disease in the world.

As a hotelier, you have to protect your guests and staff from these flying furies without disrupting the ambience of your establishment. Since many patrons are looking for rest and relaxation during their stay, pest control programs have to be discreet. In addition, the incorrect use of pesticides can raise concerns for guests and staff. Hotels also present a particularly challenging environment for pest control due to the constant entering and exiting of guests and the delivery of shipments throughout the day, both which can leave doors open and offer flies the opportunity to fly inside.

An Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach to fly control can help ensure a positive experience for your guests. IPM targets the reasons that pests infest your facility to help prevent pest infestations before they become visible to guests. In addition, IPM programs utilize non-chemical control options, such as sanitation and exclusion, before relying on chemical treatments. In the event that all other treatment options fail, IPM allows for chemical methods to be used but only in the least volatile formulations and in targeted areas to combat specific pests. This approach helps keep your guests safe and protect the environment.

Identify the Problem

Since IPM focuses on prevention, the initial step in your fly control program should be to determine what attracts flies to your hotel in the first place. Flies flock to areas that offer the elements necessary for their survival, namely food, water, shelter and optimal temperatures. Hotels supply these resources in abundance, especially in various pest "hot spots" such as lobbies, kitchens, receiving docks, and storage and waste areas.

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Coming up in January 2019...

Mobile Technology: The Future is Now

Mobile Technology continues to advance at a relentless pace and the hotel industry continues to adapt. Hotel guests have shown a strong preference for mobile self-service - from checking-in/out at a hotel kiosk, to ordering room service, making dinner reservations, booking spa treatments, and managing laundry/dry cleaning services. And they also enjoy the convenience of paying for these services with smart phone mobile payments. In addition, some hotels have adopted a “concierge in your pocket” concept. Through a proprietary hotel app, guests can access useful information such as local entertainment venues, tourist attractions, event calendars, and medical facilities and services. In-room entertainment continues to be a key factor, as guests insist on the capacity to plug in their own mobile devices to customize their entertainment choices. Mobile technology also allows for greater marketing opportunities. For example, many hotels have adopted the use of “push notifications” - sending promotions, discounts and special event messages to guests based on their property location, purchase history, profiles, etc. Near field communication (NFC) technology is also being utilized to support applications such as opening room doors, earning loyalty points, renting a bike, accessing a rental car, and more. Finally, some hotels have adopted more futuristic technology. Robots are in use that have the ability to move between floors to deliver room service requests for all kinds of items - food, beverages, towels, toothbrushes, chargers and snacks. And infrared scanners are being used by housekeeping staff that can detect body heat within a room, alerting staff that the room is occupied and they should come back at a later time. The January Hotel Business Review will report on what some hotels are doing to maximize their opportunities in this exciting mobile technology space.