What is Integrated Pest Management (IPM)?

Batzner Pest Control prides itself on being an industry leader in innovative pest management practices. One practice that we particularly excel in is our use of Integrated Pest Management, a more effective and environmentally responsible alternative to traditional pest control methods.

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) vs. Traditional Pest Control

The difference between Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and traditional pest control can be summed up as the following: IPM is devoted to finding the best solution to a pest issue, rather than the easiest. This means that IPM rejects traditional pest management’s “one size fits all” method of solving every pest issue with an excessive amount of pesticide treatments. Rather than routinely applying unnecessary chemicals, IPM takes into account the individual situation, and focuses on preventative solutions to pest problems. Karl Rowell, Batzner’s QA & Safety Manager, describes IPM as, “A holistic approach to pest control. It involves a number of control measures in combination with working with our clients in a partnership to provide a pest free environment. Both Batzner and the client play an equal as well as vital role in the ongoing prevention program.”

Service specialists trained in IPM employ a three-part approach consisting of inspection, identification, and treatment. The treatment determined by the first two steps typically focuses on treating the causes of pest problems, such as excluding entry points and eliminating food and water sources, and pesticides are only used when necessary.

How Batzner Utilizes IPM

Dan Stawicki, a Operations Manager here at Batzner, summarizes our use of IPM by saying that, “Batzner looks for mechanical and cultural changes to better improve chances of a pest free environment with limited use of chemical applications.” Our use of IPM is most apparent in our pestfree365 program, where we establish an ongoing partnership with the client founded on IPM principles. The BAN™ System includes service visits during peak times of pest activity and focuses on preventing pest issues from occurring through exclusion methods and educating the client on ways to reduce the attractiveness of their home or business to pests.

Your Role in IPM

For IPM to be successful, you need to have an active role in your pest control program and view it as a partnership with your pest control company. Monitor and communicate what goes on in between your service specialist’s visits, and keep up on the daily cultural practices that make your home or business less appealing to pests. The National Pest Management Association provides a few examples of these practices and things to keep an eye out for below:

  • Dispose of garbage regularly and store in sealed containers.
  • Keep basements and crawl spaces well ventilated and dry.
  • Look for rodent droppings and gnawing marks, which indicate a pest problem; determine where the rodents are gaining entry and eliminate entry.
  • Seal cracks and holes on the outside of the condominiums, including entry points for utilities and pipes.
  • Keep tree branches and shrubbery well trimmed.
  • Repair decaying exterior wood on condominiums as some insects are drawn to deteriorating wood.
  • Replace weather-stripping and repair loose mortar around basement foundation and windows.
  • Don’t overlook proper drainage at the foundation; install a drainage system, which will channel water away from the home.
  • Make sure that there is no standing water on flat roofs

More tips related to Integrated Pest Management that help prevent pests in your home or business can be found on our blog and on the National Pest Management Association’s website.

Integrated Pest Management is proven to be the most effective and responsible approach to pest control. Call 866-591-3519 or contact us online today for more information or to join an Integrated Pest Management partnership with Batzner Pest Control!

Eliminating Cockroaches in Restaurants and Commercial Settings

A pest infestation can be disastrous for restaurant owners. A health inspection revealing an infestation can cause your restaurant to close, and a customer seeing a single pest can result in lost business. Certain types of pests will cause a much bigger reaction than others. A fly buzzing around the bar or some ants on a back patio may be tolerated, but a cockroach sighting is almost guaranteed to send people running for the doors.

Why Cockroaches Love Restaurants

Roaches love restaurants for the same reason people do – they provide food, water, shelter, and company all in the same location. Eliminating cockroaches’ access to these life essentials is key to ensuring that your human customers continue to come in and enjoy them!

Eliminating Food Sources

Cockroaches are scavengers, and eat many types of material besides food scraps. These include paper products, cloth items, and cardboard, all of which are usually found in abundance in commercial settings. To help prevent against a roach infestation, store these items in dry areas and try to keep them off the ground. Don’t let empty cardboard boxes pile up around the kitchen, take them out to your recycling bin as soon as possible.

In many situations, however, it is food residue left in hidden areas that attract and keep cockroaches around. “Most restaurants are pretty good at keeping visible areas clean, and owners are understandably upset when kitchen counters are spotless but cockroach activity continues,” says Brad Fischer, District Manager at Batzner Pest Control. “The real problem tends to come from the unseen areas, like a spill underneath an oven, or crumbs not being vacuumed along the walls in a dining area.”

This happened recently at a local restaurant, Fischer explained. “Not only did we have to pull out all the coolers and other equipment to reach the built-up debris that the cockroaches were living on, but we actually had to pull stainless steel wall backing off the walls after we moved the equipment to gain access. The small amount of space between the wall backing and the wall provided heat and harborage for the roaches, and the caulk provided a food source when other sources had been cleaned. Once we eliminated the food sources and treated the existing cockroaches, they stopped being a problem for the restaurant owner.”

Eliminating Water Sources

Water being spilled on the ground isn’t usually looked at as a cleanliness issue, but standing water can be as big of a draw for cockroaches as food being left out. While they can survive for up to a month without food, roaches can only live a week without water. For this reason, any leakage from pipes or faucets needs to be fixed immediately. Good ventilation is also vital to avoiding moist areas from developing throughout the restaurant.

Eliminating Shelter

Cockroaches in Wisconsin are reliant on human structures to stay alive in the winter and will go to great lengths to enter a building that has their desired level of warmth and humidity. To combat this, all entry points need to be closed off. Watch out for holes or cracks around window and door frames, water pipes, and baseboards. Use caulk to seal off any holes that are found. Also avoid leaving doors open for an extended amount of time and make sure that doors fits securely inside their frames.

Preventative Pest Control

Taking away their food, water, and shelter is a great start to preventing cockroaches from entering your restaurant; however, doing this on your own can be much more difficult than it seems. A professional pest control company providing preventative treatment and consultation will be better able to keep the cockroaches outside and your customers inside. If you already have an infestation or are struggling to identify the cause of one, call us at 866-591-3519 or contact us online for an inspection or treatment.

Top 10 Signs of Mice Infestations in Homes

Along with pumpkin spice and chilly temperatures, fall is high season for mice to seek shelter in your home or business. They might seem somewhat harmless or an issue that you can take care of yourself with traps or other products, however, a mice infestation is a serious problem that should not to be taken lightly. Mice carry a wide variety of diseases and their continuous gnawing can cause damage to your electrical wiring, possibly sparking a fire. Additionally, if mice are not effectively driven out of your home or business, they can multiply very quickly.

While there are many DIY solutions available for mice infestations, the wrong product can be a waste of money, or even worse, it could drive them further into the walls where they will wait to re-enter your house weeks or months later.

So, how do you know if you have a mice infestation in your house? Here are the top ten signs of mice infestation:

  1. Look for nests of fine, shredded materials which are frequently found in garages, closets, attics and basements.
  2. Notice any gnawing on doors, ledges, baseboards or various materials you may have stored in your garage or basement.
  3. Seeing a mouse in person is obviously a very good indication of a mouse infestation. Night is the most active time for mice.
  4. Note if you hear sounds such as gnawing, climbing in the walls, running across the upper surface of ceilings and even little squeaks are common.
  5. When house mice are present, you might notice an ammonia-like odor, which is much more noticeable in smaller areas such as cupboards.
  6. You might notice droppings along hallways, in feeding areas and near shelters. They are about the size of a grain of rice, and are dark brown to black in color.
  7. Both wet and dry urine may also be present, and will glow under ultraviolet light, but keep in mind, many other materials do as well.
  8. Tiny mouse tracks can be noticeable on dusty or muddy surfaces.
  9. Look for dirty smudges along the baseboards. Mice don’t have very good eyesight, therefore, they stick to the same routes and guide themselves along the baseboards.
  10. Burrow holes are typically one inch in diameter, but mice can easily fit through holes as small as a dime. Look for these in baseboards, corners, walls, entryways and foundations.

If you suspect a problem with mice, it’s best to contact an experienced pest control provider right away. Batzner can determine the full scope of the problem and plan the best course of action to rid your home or business of these pesky, and oftentimes dangerous, intruders.

5 Tips to an Effective Pest Control Program in Food Plants and Warehouses

Mice, flies, cockroaches and other insects have no place in a food processing, manufacturing or warehousing facility. While pests may find a way to make your facility their home, hiring a pest control provider that understands Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and food safety can send the pests packing.

Pests in your facility can be a serious problem if they contaminate food supplies or worse yet, your reputation. When partnering with a pest control provider, we recommend 5 tips for an effective pest control program in food processing, manufacturing, warehousing and audited facilities.

5 Tips for an Effective Pest Control Program

  1. The time spent at each service visit inspecting the facility is worth the investment. A trained pest professional will conduct regular inspections to the building structure, office, garbage room, loading docks, food processing areas, restrooms and other locations. Your Service Specialist will note any conducive conditions and signs of pest infestation to ensure you catch a potential issue before it becomes a bigger problem.
  2. Keep your windows, doors, screens, loading docks, exhaust vents and floor tiles in good shape. Openings or gaps in your facility provide an opportunity to leave your facility susceptible to pests. By sealing cracks and crevices, closing openings, covering vents with wire screening and repairing damaged floor drains or tiles; your facility will not give pests access to your sensitive environment.
  3. Reduce pest problems by focusing on sanitation in your facility. Having a regular cleaning schedule that focuses on the hidden parts of your facility will help you remove any potential pest harborage areas. The cleaning schedule should include hard to reach areas, dumpster rooms/pads, floor drains, employee locker rooms, storage areas, and ceiling voids.
  4. Consistent monitoring can be the difference between stored product pests infesting one container or an entire room. Ask your pest control provider about visual inspections of delivery shipments, rotating your stock, and the use of pheromone traps.
  5. Communication is key with your pest control professional. If you are not available during their visits, encourage him/her to follow up with you in regards to any concerns. Batzner Service Specialists regularly use photos and email reports to keep their contacts “in the loop” on items in their facility.

Batzner’s Brand Protection program follows integrated pest management principles that focuses on inspection, sanitation, exclusion and monitoring. So how do we do that?

  • Partnership approach with detailed reporting, ongoing communication and rapid response times
  • Specialized programs with an emphasis on quality pest control solutions and training options for your staff
  • Expertly Trained Service Specialists and Account Executives to provide expertise you can count on

For more information, contact us here or call 866-591-3519 .

What is the Batzner Guarantee?

You’ve heard us mention our Batzner Guarantee – but what exactly does that mean?

When you call a pest management service, you are generally either looking to prevent future pests, or to control an existing infestation. You have an expectation of not only your pest problem being managed, but of fast and friendly service as well.

To Batzner, those are basic requests of a pest control service and we don’t take them lightly. Our reputation is based on our expertly-trained and certified field professionals and our skilled office team that you’ve entrusted with your home or business.

We pride ourselves on our legendary customer service, provided to each and every client. That means not only our friendly and helpful staff, but also rapid response times and convenient scheduling.

When you choose Batzner, our promise to you is that we are not satisfied unless you are. We will continue to come back until your pest control issue has been resolved. We guarantee that you will receive the service that you’ve requested, as well as a high level of customer service that you can expect each and every time you work with Batzner.

Call Batzner today to assess your pest control needs, and receive a free estimate at 262-797-4160.

Preventing and Managing Mice in Office Buildings

Mice are a common commercial pest in New Berlin WI - Batzner Pest Control

When mice are found in office buildings, they are in search of food, warmth and shelter. Your office provides an exceptional shelter for mice, it hides them from the cold weather and protects them from predators. Plus, with all the food left in cubicles, desk drawers and break areas, your office is like a giant all-you-can-eat buffet. Because offices are the center of businesses where meetings are held and work is being completed, a rodent infestation can create less than ideal working conditions for your staff.

How Can Mice Get Into My Building?

Mice are very nimble creatures, able to run and jump at great lengths, as well as climb almost any surface. On top of that young mice can squeeze through a gap as small as ¼ inch. There are many ways in which a mouse, or rat, can get into your office.

  1. Mouse Highways – One way in which mice can navigate their way into your workplace is through connections between different buildings such as water pipes, cables and other underground methods. This allows rats and mice to quickly move between different buildings with ease. With more and more buildings being built every day, each sharing the same pipes and cables, rats and mice are finding it even easier to explore new territories in search for food and a place to live, and this can be your office. Once inside, mice can find their way around using ‘mouse highways’ we have created: cable risers, false ceilings, false floors, wall partitions, lift shafts – quick ways to travel longer distances in search for food.
  1. Food Pallets – Another way mice navigate their way into your office is through food pallets, especially if your office is attached to a warehouse. If a food preparation plant has an infestation of rats or mice, this can quickly spread to other areas. A mouse will no doubt explore the environment of the new area they have travel to. All mice need to survive is shelter and minimal food and water, plus they can multiply within months. The more we ship food from one place to another, the more mice will hitch a ride unnoticed.
What Can Mice Do to My Office?

Mice are pretty harmless right? So what’s the big deal if they decide to live in my office? To put it politely, you couldn’t be more wrong. Although mice look sweet and innocent they can be quite a menace.

  1. Spread Disease – Mice carry many diseases rats and spread them around the office.
  2. Droppings – Rodents such as rats and mice can spread diseases through their droppings. Unlike you and me mice aren’t toilet trained, so they leave a mess anywhere and everywhere, including your keyboard and phone. You don’t want to be touching that first thing on a Monday morning.
  3. Urine – Mice also like to urinate everywhere, especially in a new place. It lets them keep track of the places they’ve been and is a way of leaving messages behind for their friends. When mice urinate in certain areas multiple times you start to get urine pillars. This is where the urine merges with the grease from their fur and creates small piles which look a lot like stalagmites, that’s not something you want to see during lunch break. On top of this, mice and rat urine is also one of the main instigators of the spread of rodent borne diseases. These harmful pathogens could be picked up on your hands or sometimes mix with dust, which, if disturbed, can be inhaled.
  4. Chew Cables – Mice are very neophilic (like new things) creatures, it is in their nature to explore – especially with their teeth. They gnaw at items to test for food, gain passage, or just out of curiosity. Being in an office environment this curiosity can lead to rats and mice chewing on the billions of cables in your office. This can be anywhere from keyboard and phone wires to internet and server cables.
  5. Start Fires – One of the potential downfalls of rodents gnawing at the wires in your office is the potential to start fires. By chewing on the wires, the mice leave the rubber casing open, which can lead to them short circuiting and catching alight.
  6. Lose Work – On top of the potential fire hazard having mice in your office creates, there is also a risk of losing work. Nowadays everything is done on computers, having a mouse gnawing its way through the power cables can result in computer failure leading to loss of work.
How Can I Stop Mice Coming Into My Office?

So now you know the risks of having mice in your office, but how do you stop them? The best way is through a handful of mouse prevention techniques that can be carried out without the help of a professional.

  1. Clean Up – Mice are amazing scavengers, although they don’t need much food to survive, they won’t pass up a free meal. That’s why dirty plates are a dream find for a mouse. Free food with not that much effort. A simple way to stop mice from coming into your office is to make sure all your plates, mugs, and cups are clean at the end of the day.
  2. Empty Garbage Cans – Garbage cans are also a good place for mice and rats to find food. They aren’t fussy eaters (mostly) and will quite happily eat out of a garbage can. Be sure to empty your garbage cans at the end of each day. It’s a good idea to speak to the landlord of your office complex to try and get the outside dumpsters placed a good distance away from the building to stop mice from finding their way inside. Some infestations have been nipped in the bud when cleaning rotations are changed to ensure offices are cleaned thoroughly at night and not left to the morning.
  3. Don’t Eat At Your Desk – It’s very common to see this happening in this day and age, but it’s a big no no if you don’t want to attract mice into the building. Eating at your desk is an open invitation to mice. Any crumbs or leftover food you leave at your desk is a gold mine for a hungry mouse. If you do decide to eat at your desk, make sure you clean up any crumbs left behind as well as discard used packaging and unwanted food.
  4. Keep Food in Plastic Containers – We all have our favorite snacks hidden away in our desk, but did you know these are giant magnets for rodents? A great way to keep snacks nearby is to place them in air-tight plastic containers. Not only do they keep the scent hidden from mice, but they also keep your food fresh!
  5. Baiting – An effective way to control rodents on your property is through the use of bait. Rodent baiting consists of strategically placing bait in boxes around your building. The mouse enters the box in search for food, and has a nibble on the bait.
  6. Professional Mouse Control – If you have taken the necessary prevention procedures but still find yourself with some unwanted office guests, the next step would be to contact a pest control professional. When Batzner inspects office buildings, the main areas we inspect are we check the following:
  • Kitchenettes and break rooms
  • IT or Computer closets
  • Equipment or appliances
  • Employee desks and cubicle dividers
  • Behind boxes or filing cabinets
  • Custodial or utility closets
  • Heating systems and pipe chases
  • Storage or warehouse locations
  • Suspended ceilings, floors and wall voids

Batzner partners with businesses to eliminate pests from commercial office spaces. Our experts can recommend sanitation best practices and create a customized pest control protection plan to protect your brand. To schedule your free pest control evaluation, contact Batzner today or call us at 866-591-3519 .

Cockroaches Can Cost Your Business More than Just Your Reputation

Wisconsin restaurants are unfortunately no strangers to the risks of cockroaches. Kitchens and storage areas are home to a number of damp and humid areas where cockroaches thrive. If your customer notices a cockroach in your building, the assumption of poor sanitation practices can possibly lead to a damaged reputation.

However, the dangers of a cockroach infestation reach far beyond your customers’ opinion on the cleanliness of your restaurant.

  1. Your restaurant may fail health inspections and be subject to fines and shut-downs
  2. Your stock may also be damaged which could lead to lost revenue
  3. Cockroaches can carry disease and bacteria, including various allergens and salmonella creating an unsafe environment for your employees, customers and restaurant

If your business has failed a health inspection, or you or your customer has noticed a cockroach, Batzner is your best line of defense. A Batzner Service Specialist will first identify and confirm the cockroach infestation, uncover their source, and implement a treatment and preventative program designed to keep them from coming back.

What can you do in the meantime?

  1. Implement good sanitation practices including eliminating food waste several times a day
  2. Maintain a rigorous cleaning schedule
  3. Eliminate potential moisture areas such as leaking pipes
  4. Keep premises clean and free of clutter will help eliminate harborage areas
  5. All cracks, crevices, including pipe openings, should be sealed and checked on a regular basis
  6. Vacuum regularly will also help to keep cockroaches at bay.

If your business or restaurant may potentially be infested with cockroaches, don’t delay. Call a Batzner Pest Control professional today 800.878.2110.

University Struggles with Cockroaches

An unending supply of food and water, along with cozy dark areas to hide, breed, and overall, thrive. Welcome to roach heaven, in this case a university’s student dorm.

With 15 plus floors, kitchens located on every other floor and housing for more than 100 students, the university was struggling with a roach issue that had been ongoing for years, despite regular pest control service by another company. They turned to Batzner in desperation.

Batzner’s initial investigation turned up several issues. The roaches had spread to every floor in the high rise, requiring a multi-layered plan to address various harborage areas. The basis of the infestation appeared to be in the basement trash room, where trash was collected via trash chutes servicing every floor. The trash chutes themselves were also an integral part of the problem, as food stuck to the sides, fermenting and building up to provide a never ending feast as the roaches made their way from the bottom upward. This alone enabled each floor’s population to thrive.

Additionally, the previous company had been treating with only a broad-spectrum pesticide, applied without regard to the pest origin or sources of sustenance, making it impossible to do much more than eliminate a few individuals at a time.

“It was crucial to treat with not only an IGR (insect growth regulator) inside the opening to the trash chute on every floor, but also bait everywhere the roaches had been spotted, including access panels, kitchens, and the basement trash room, which was loaded with roaches and most likely the original source,” explained Batzner Operations Manager Dan Stawicki.

A thorough cleaning of each trash chute in its entirety was completed by a professional cleaning company, removing years of food buildup and eliminating a major roach food source. Stawicki noted, “It may be necessary to employ a professional company to clean areas like a multi-story trash chute because of the equipment required. It is not enough to just clean the opening and a few feet inside. However, the result is well worth the cost.”

It took several months to eliminate the roach population that had been thriving for years. Because every floor had them, and they could move from floor to floor via duct work, trash chutes, in bags and luggage, and even on people, Batzner was vigilant, with a Service Specialist initially treating every other week.

Stawicki is encouraging regarding pest issues in student housing. “Don’t assume that roaches are impossible to eliminate in areas such as trash rooms. Investing in the protocols your pest control professional prescribes, such as maintaining sanitation standards, is key to preventing a re-infestation.” In addition to continuing with the pest control program, the school continued with bi-yearly professional cleaning of the trash chutes, and consequently they have remained roach-free. “We find that clients that partner closely with us during the discovery period, implementation process and follow-up protocols see continued success with their pest control program.”

Turkestan Cockroaches Arrive Unexpectedly in International Shipment

Batzner’s expertise provided quick identification and effective pest control for a client struggling with an unusual infestation at a major brand’s manufacturing facility.

Pest control in manufacturing plants is usually not as eventful as in other industries like food plants and property management, but it occasionally presents unique situations. Many manufacturing facilities bring in parts from all over the country or all over the world and pests from those regions often tag along. In these situations, quickly and accurately identifying the pest is crucial to solving an issue before it grows into an even bigger problem. Fortunately for this client, Batzner excels at these out of the ordinary cases, and was able to swiftly recognize and deal with an exotic pest to protect the client’s brand.

The Issue

A manufacturer of machinery and electrical equipment began having complaints of cockroaches, which Batzner’s Service Team immediately recognized as an odd pest for their industry. Cockroaches are common when dealing with restaurants, food plants, and property management, but conditions in manufacturing facilities are usually not as attractive for them. The complaints began in the middle of summer, which made the situation even more unusual, as cockroaches usually look to enter buildings when the temperature starts to cool.

No matter where they are or when they are seen, cockroaches can become a huge problem very quickly. Roaches are notorious for their ability to reproduce rapidly, and a small population can snowball into a full-blown infestation in a very short amount of time. In one cockroach species, a single female and her descendants can produce up to 30,000 offspring in a year.


The first step in solving any pest issue is identifying the specific pest to be dealt with, as even closely related pests can have different behaviors and preferred habitats, which can affect the treatment plan. When dealing with cockroaches in Wisconsin and Northern Illinois, this usually means identifying between two species, the German Cockroach and the American Cockroach.

In this situation, the roaches were being reported emerging from the plant’s trough drains. This led Service Specialists to initially expect to be dealing with American cockroaches, as the drains resembled the hot and humid sewer environment preferred by American cockroaches in northern urban areas, and German cockroaches are more likely to be found in the office areas. When a live roach was seen by a Service Specialist, however, he knew that it was neither of the two.

According to the Service Specialist, “I knew right away that this was a totally different species. It was too big to be a German cockroach and too small to be and American, and the coloring and markings were strange.” A few were brought in to the office and shown to Operations Manager Jason Ganas. “I had never encountered this species before, but after some research with other Service Managers we were fairly confident that it was a species called the Turkestan cockroach. We sent a sample to a contact at the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture who confirmed that this was correct.”


With the pest identified, a treatment plan was able to be formed. Turkestan cockroaches necessitated a rapid response, as they are one of the fastest reproducing species of cockroach. Ganas explains, “Turkestan roaches mature very quickly, and they lay more eggs than most species of cockroach. This has allowed them to out-compete and replace other species in areas around the U.S., especially in the Southwest.”

Because of this, the areas around the trough drains and machinery were aggressively treated to significantly reduce the population. Increased sanitation and cooling the indoor temperature to encourage the roaches to leave the building was also implemented. When Batzner’s monitors suggested that these measures had been effective, the focus switched to improving exclusion to prevent the pests from re-entering.


The infestation was cleaned-out quickly and completely, preventing what could have been a major issue for the manufacturing facility. The source of the infestation was found to be a shipment from China, which likely had originated from somewhere in central Asia in the Turkestan cockroach’s home range. However, it just as easily could have come from a shipment from the American Southwest, or anywhere else that the insect has spread.

Batzner retains a strong partnership with this client, and has educated them on the importance of inspecting incoming shipments and the proper ways to prevent future infestations.

Restaurant Suffers from Cockroach Infestation

Batzner’s expertise has helped many clients who had limited to no success with a previous pest control company. Here is one such occurrence, where thorough treatments and customer education is aiding in solving a difficult cockroach problem and instructing a restaurant owner on the practices necessary to prevent future infestations.

A pest infestation can be disastrous for restaurant owners. A health inspection revealing an infestation can cause your restaurant to close, and a customer seeing a single pest can result in lost business. Cockroaches, more than any other insect, are associated with an unclean environment. A fly buzzing around the bar or some ants on a back patio may be tolerated, but a cockroach sighting is almost guaranteed to send people running for the doors.

Unfortunately, cockroaches also happen to be one of the most resilient and difficult to treat insects in the world. For this reason, restaurant owners need the most dedicated and thorough pest control professionals working to protect their brand.

The Issue

The owner of a local restaurant was receiving multiple reports of cockroach sightings at his business. He had been using a national pest control provider who grew complacent and appeared either unaware or unconcerned that the roach issue was worsening. According to the owner, the response time was a major problem and the service was often provided during business hours, which can lead to a less effective treatment due to employee interference in addition to being unappealing for customers. The restaurant was originally receiving monthly service before the owner had to request switching to bi-monthly and finally weekly treatments in an attempt to resolve the growing infestation– nothing was recommended by the service provider.

After months of the problem worsening, a restaurant owner’s worst nightmare occurred. A cockroach walked across a table of fourteen on Christmas. The family got up and walked straight out of the restaurant. It was at this time that the owner decided to drop his service provider and give Batzner a chance to help him rebuild his brand.

Our Inspection

Upon the initial inspection, live roaches were discovered in the kitchen, on the service counter, and in the dish room, with evidence of cockroach activity present in other areas as well.

Keith Loewus, a Commercial Sales Consultant involved in the inspection, noted that, “The previous company didn’t use any type of monitors at all. Simple monitors like glue traps are helpful for identifying the type of insect you are dealing with as well as pinpointing the source of the infestation. We strategically placed monitors throughout the restaurant and the results allowed us to narrow down the source of the problem.”

Also during the inspection, serious problems were noticed that the previous provider had not pointed out to the owner. These included:

  • Missing baseboard/cracks in baseboard throughout kitchen allowing entry
  • Debris build-up (lots of food, paper, and cardboard provides food sources and harborage)
  • Standing water by dishwasher (water source)
  • Cracks in floor allow for food/grease/debris build-up
  • Damaged base wall tiles; allows for debris and mop water to accumulate under tile

All of these factors contributed to making the location an attractive residence for cockroaches, and educating the owner on the necessity of fixing them was the first step taken in stopping the infestation.

Our Service

To start, a team of four Service Specialists were sent in for an initial clean-out, including Dave Kusnierek, a District Manager and Associate Certified Entomologist with over thirty years of experience. They were able to assess the situation and reassure the owner that it was nothing they hadn’t seen and dealt with before. This took place after-hours when the restaurant was closed, which was important because it allowed our Service Specialists to fully inspect and treat all areas without having cooks or other employees in the way and prevented customers from witnessing the process.

Also involved in the treatment was Service Specialist Rob Van Willigen, who observed that, “The previous company was largely or even only using baits. This can be ineffective, especially if they aren’t mixing up the type of bait used. We, on the other hand, use the correct products appropriate for the situation. In this case, that is a mix of different products and Insect Growth Regulators, as well as a fog injection into wall voids to reach areas where the roaches hide.” Using a variety of products, in addition to being able to reach different areas, prevents populations from building a resistance to the bait or other treatment being applied.

During subsequent services, which always take place before the restaurant opens, monitor use and consulting with the owner on sanitation and exclusion have continued, in keeping with the Integrated Pest Management philosophy. The inspection and initial clean-out treatment had revealed the main source of the infestation to be the wall behind the grills, so services regularly include a dust product injected into holes drilled into the wall for this purpose in addition to normal treatment.


Within a month of the initial service there was a drastic reduction in the cockroach population. While the situation is not yet perfect, it is definitely under control. Upkeep on sanitation and other aspects are necessary to completely eradicate the population, but the owner is already very happy with the progress that has been made.

Batzner’s dedication and attention to detail have impressed him the most. While his last provider was rarely there for a full hour, Batzner’s service calls routinely last approximately an hour and a half. Skie Gierach, Operations Manager, has experienced this as a common difference between us and national companies, “Many national providers pay their Service Specialists based on the treatments they perform in a day or as a percentage of the quoted price of a location, rather than an hourly wage. This incentivizes them to focus on doing their work as quickly as possible, rather than on the quality.”

With the extra time spent at locations like this one, Batzner Service Specialists are able to perform a more thorough treatment. This pays off against tough pests like cockroaches. As Rob explains, “The extra time and effort we spend on our treatments means we can get to every crack and crevice, even the very difficult to reach ones. This is important because those hard to reach places are where the roaches actually hide away. Getting to those places usually means being on your hands and knees, which other providers may not be willing or have the time to do. While it isn’t easy being that thorough, the results speak for themselves.”

Batzner looks forward to continuing to work with this client and solving any other pest problems that may arise. Both Batzner and the owner are confident that the thoroughness and dedication brought to treatments, as well as the education and partnership provided, will be enough to keep their brand protected.