The Positives of Attracting Bees to Your Garden

Often, gardens take a lot of looking after. Nature however, offers us something for free – which is something you don’t get very often. Attracting nature’s essential pollinators helps to keep your garden alive and flourishing.

Attracting bees to somewhere may not seem like a great option, as you may be worried that they would nest somewhere inconvenient. However – the chances of this happening are very slim, and the positives outweigh the negatives, as bees tend to do no harm.

Encouraging bee populations to thrive is an encouraged move environmentally speaking, as bees are becoming increasingly endangered and for everyone, that is bad news. Changes in agriculture, and an increase of land being used for housing instead of being left as landscape leaves bees with little to feed on.

However, should you have an exceptional circumstance, for example if there is a hazard to allergies, only then will we deal with them. If you have a nest, it’s best to work around them, waiting until winter for the colony to die out, as they are classed as a protected species and are useful pollinators.

The honey bee, like ants and termites, is a social insect. They live in colonies and the individual insect has specific tasks within the colony. They naturally reproduce in spring and early summer, where the old queen and a few thousand workers will depart and leave the rest of the colony behind with a new queen.

This is what is known as the stereotypical bee swarm, and these are usually found in bushes whilst in a ‘transit camp’ looking for somewhere new to form a colony. This can often be a scary sight, but they are usually not aggressive. You must remember bees tend to avoid stinging, as this kills them.

We will contact a member of a local Bee Keeper’s Association if we are called out to a swarm, as they are well placed and happy to collect and relocate the swarm to an Apiary for domestication.

Our services are only required if they have gained access to a building cavity, as prompt action will save a lot of trouble in the future.

How NOT to Remove Wasp’s Nests

Wasp’s nests are one of the most easily visible and disturbing kinds of pest infestation a homeowner will have to face. Founded by queens during the autumn months, nests lie dormant during the winter before developing quickly in the spring and becoming a major nuisance in the summer.

Removing a wasp’s nest is difficult, not least because they will aggressively defend themselves even if the nest itself is destroyed. You should almost always call in the professionals at Hastings Pest Control rather than trying to remove the nest yourself, especially if you or anyone nearby are at risk of anaphylactic shock from wasp stings. This post has a few tips on how not to do it.

Water – flooding a nest might seem like a good idea, or breaking it up with a high-pressure hose, but bear in mind that wasps tend to build their nests in sheltered areas and you risk flooding vulnerable parts of your house that would otherwise be protected by the roof. This also won’t get rid of the wasps themselves, and they’ll quickly rebuild – and go after you and anyone else nearby in revenge.

Fire – Satisfying, but not very effective and quite dangerous to whatever building you’re in. Wasps nests are built from wood pulp, which is quite flammable, and as such fires can quickly spread throughout the infested building. Worse, even immolation won’t kill all the wasps, so you’ll still get stung.

Impacts – Wasps’ nests make juicy targets for a cricket bat or thrown brick, but this is the worst way of dealing with them – you’ll get stung repeatedly whether you’re successful or not, and you’ll rarely kill all of them anyway – and they’ll often repair the damage you do quickly enough.

To avoid floods, painful stings and setting your house on fire, contact the wasp nest removal specialists at Hastings Pest Control for a professional solution

How to Keep Birds Away From Your Home

While it’s nice to wake up to birdsong or attract uncommon species to your garden with a bird feeder, birds have a habit of getting into places you’d rather they weren’t like attics or houses. Once they’re inside it can be hard to get rid of birds, and they often leave droppings or spoil food as well as generally being a nuisance. This post should help you prevent birds from getting into your house in the first place.


First, make sure you know what kind of birds you’re dealing with. It is often illegal to interfere with birds of prey and other rare species when they’ve nested, and you may need to call a specialist or bird sanctuary. Nests are also often protected as well, so make sure you don’t disturb them unless you’re sure it isn’t illegal. Different methods also work with different species, so knowing what you’re up against is important.


To prevent birds from entering your house, consider using decoys or sound defences. If the noise is no object, consider installing speakers and playing distress calls to warn birds off. Placing decoy model predators like owls and cats is also good, although birds often become used to them in time and you may have to move them around on a weekly or monthly basis to keep them ‘fresh.’ Ultrasonic sounds have also been known to work although they can be uncomfortable for people and animals nearby and should be used with caution.


Hanging aluminium foil strips or visual bird scarers in prominent places can also be effective for driving birds away, particularly moving objects or bright colours that will stand out and catch the light.


Physical methods of repelling birds include blocking off perches and holes that can be used for nesting with netting, anti-roosting strips or spikes on perches and use of repellent sprays. Purpose-made non-toxic bird repellent is available from various sources but many home-made recipes are available, including mixtures of pepper and water to keep out sparrows and sprays of strong spices like cloves, cayenne pepper and apple cider vinegar, mixed with water.

Bird proofing – Sussex and Kent

Bird Proofing in Sussex and Kent

Holmes Pest Control are based in Hastings but are able to serve our customers all over Kent and Sussex.

We can deal with all problems relating to pigeons and seagulls by assessing your requirements for bird proofing.

Seagulls, gulls and pigeons are by far the most common problem to deal with when it comes to bird proofing.

Bird proofing can help to prevent the spread of disease, damage due to droppings and of course noise.

For all your Bird Proofing needs, call Holmes Pest Control today.

  • Bird proofing  in Hastings
  • Bird proofing  in Sussex
  • Bird Proofing in Kent

Rat Removal and Rat Control Services

Rat Removal and Rat Control Services

Holmes Pest Control are based in Hastings but are able to serve our customers all over Kent and Sussex.

Now that the cold weather is starting rats instinctively visit and settle areas such as homes and offices where food and water are found.

If you start to hear any gnawing or scrathing or see any signs of droppings or pellets it is likely there are rats visiting or settled in the property.

Small populations of rats can quickly grow and not only is this a health risk but they can cause significant damage adapting to their surroundings.

If you are based in Kent or Sussex then call Holmes Pest Control to investigate and deal with rats.

  • Rat removal in Hastings
  • Rat control in Hastings
  • Rat removal in Sussex
  • Rat control in Sussex

Wasp nest in a Cupboard

This picture shows a mature Wasp nest in a cupboard in the bedroom of a bungalow with a loft converstion.

The Wasps had got into the cupboard via the tiled roof and were busy building for months before the householder discovered it, just imagine the shock as he opened the door!

In a nest of this size there could be several thousand Wasps so the safest way for us to deal with it was to take  the boxes and things off the shelf and cover the nest with a sturdy plastic bag and remove the whole nest (not something for the faint hearted!).

After removing the structure of the nest an insecticide spray was used to kill off any remaining Wasps and the cupboard could then be safely used again.

A Wasp nest in a Bed!!

  We found this Wasp nest after the customer said that the spare room had been  full of Wasps and he thought they may have come in throught the window or be coming from a nest in the loft.

In fact they were coming in and out through a gap in the timber window frame and had been quitely building the nest for a few months.

This just goes to show that Wasps will nest anywhere that they can find a space and that doesn’t get disturbed.

The damage to the duvet meant that it had to be disposed off but the bed itself was not damaged. Once the nest had been treated and the Wasps removed the nest was safely delt with and the spare room was put back into use.

Noises in the Chimney

Noises in the Chimney

You would be surprised what you might find.

We were called out to deal with “A Rat trapped in the chimney”by one of the letting agents that we deal with. A disused fire-place had been boarded up and over the past few days the tenant had been hearing scratching noises and became convinced that a Rat was trapped in the chimney trying to get out.

We opened up the fire place to find that a young Jackdoor had in fact fallen down the chimney from a nest on the roof, the scatching was it’s attempts to climb or fly back up to safety (much to the relief of the tenant).

After rescuing it and finding it to weak to fly and very dehydrated we decided to take it to the local RSPCA wildlife centre to be looked after until it’s strong enough to fly and be released back into the wild. 

We have since given a quote to put bird proof cowls in the chimney pots to stop the problem re-occuring

So if you have scratching noises in the chimney, it may be Rats – but not necesarily. Call Holmes Pest Control and we can investigate.

Restaurant Pest Control

Restaurant Pest Control

Our commercial services are a simple and cost effective way of fulfilling your obligation to carry out restaurant pest control. All catering establishments have a legal obligation to carry out checks and maintain logs of their pest control activities, this can be done ‘in house’ or by an outside contractor.

If you are in business as a Restaurant or Cafe and you are unsure of your obligations or how to carry out appropriate pest control than please call us for a free survey and quotation. Your business in providing good food and service, ours is to make sure you can do it with out worrying about pests!

Rats in the loft

Rats in the loft

A recent call out illustrates the problems that come from leaving Rats in the loft untreated.

There had been scratching noises for some time but the householder decided not to do anything about it. However a few days later the washing machine stopped working and there was a small flood in the kitchen. The Plumber discovered that the waste pipe from the machine had been chewed and the power lead was damage by Rats.

When we arrived on site an investigation showed that th Rats had come across into the loft from a neighbouring property and found a way into the kitchen down the cavity wall.

We were able to block access from the neighbouring property and place baits and traps to get rid of the Rats in the loft of both properties.

If you think you may have Rats in the loft it is important to act as soon as possible to prevent further damage. So if you hear scratching or gnawing don’t delay call Holmes Pest Control for prompt and effective action against Rats in the loft.