Insect Nuisance

To make a complaint about insect nuisance use this online form

We are currently UNABLE to provide an emergency call out service to deal with incidents which occur in the evening or at weekends, however we will aim to respond during the next working day.

Legal controls on insects

Under Section 79 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 the Council is able to investigate complaints about  insects emanating from relevant industrial, trade or business premises. Where the insects are related to domestic premises we must be able to prove that the premises are in such a state as to be prejudicial to health or a nuisance before we can take formal action.

Sources we cannot investigate

We cannot investigate complaints about insects from the following premises, as these are specifically excluded by the legislation:

  • Land used as arable, grazing, meadow or pasture land
  • Land used as osier land, reed beds or woodland
  • Land used for market gardens, nursery grounds or orchards
  • Land forming part of an agricultural unit (but not covered by (a) to (c) and which is of a description specified in regulations
  • Land included in a site of special scientific interest

How we investigate complaints

For a statutory nuisance to exist, the insects must pose a health risk or have an impact upon the reasonable use of a premises.

Initially complaints would be investigated by the Council`s pest control team and advice would be given on the control of nuisance insects. But it should not be assumed that killing insects is necessarily the most appropriate way to cease or abate a nuisance. If the activity and conditions attract, or provide breeding conditions for insects, to such an extent that they constitute a statutory nuisance, then it is the activity and conditions which should be addressed

It should be noted that there is a difference between insects arising from an activity on a relevant business, trade or industrial premises and the natural occurrence of insect populations. Also, there are no objective levels at which a statutory nuisance exists or may be caused, but guidance regarding what kind of situations may give rise to complaints are given with the DEFRA guidance (see useful links)

Last updated 25 September 2019

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