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Of all the pests....termites are the worst home invader.. there's 350 species.. on average infesting 1 in 5 homes..
Beagles are predominantly trained in explosive and narcotics detection...
But their powerful sense of smell .. is also deployed.. to sniff out.. termites..
"How successful is he normally?" Asked Reporter
"Buster is 97% successful.. the normal pest controller is about 70%." Said Steve Olver
Busta's handler Steve Olver from Bug-r-off- also uses traditional tools... like a taping stick.
"so what we're listening for is hollow timber if there's termites eating through this timber it'll sound hollow.. LK How does this compare to using a dog? this job is a perfect example 21.03 there are termites living behind the door frame and the dogs have picked that up the 19.54 so the knocker has missed this." Said Steve Olver
A radar gun and motion sensor helps to pinpoint the problem.
"The big blue line tells us there's termites behind the wall.... One the scale - how high is that? that's pretty high for a cool day today.. " Said Steve Olver
Buster finds areas which may have been over-looked.
On an average day he'll make 5 home visits.. sniffing skirting boards, cupboards and carpet
"We've been together 2 years.. and there's prob 15-20 jobs where i haven't located termites in a house and buster has - so that's 15-20 possible lawsuits i dodged because of buster." Said Steve Olver
Unlike other pest detectors sniffer dogs can find termites hidden in floorboards underneath carpet.. and can sniff out the pests long before the damage becomes visible
This home in the country Victorian town of Horsham.. is riddled with termites..
Bed bugs are another pest. reportedly staging a worldwide resurgence..
Common in back-packer friendly suburbs... they attach themselves to humans.. and are spread on public transport and planes..
Cockroaches also increase in spring..
A single German female can create 100,000 roaches after one year...and carry spread diseases like salmonella, typhoid, hepatitis and tuberculosis..
Tony Jones is operations manager of Amalgamated Pest Control
"Having them infesting your kitchen is obviously opening yourself up to a real problem medically." Said Tony Jones
Spiders, ants and bees thrive in the warmer months...
The best advice? Spring Clean, remove all clutter and ensure you don't leave any food scraps around, use pest bait and arrange inspections..
"It's an easy thing to forget or put off - but do so at your peril."