a destructive insect or other animal that attacks crops, food, livestock, etc.
• informal an annoying person or thing; a nuisance.
• (the pest) archaic bubonic plague.
ORIGIN late 15th cent. (denoting the bubonic plague): from French peste or Latin pestis ‘plague.’
It’s odd to me that people, pest control people especially, don’t seem to realize the ugly history and current struggle of man versus pest. Do they not think that their job means more than just keeping their route in tact? Do they not see themselves as on the front line of a nation that could easily & quickly succumb to the ravages of out of control pests if they were not there? One needs only to look around the world at other populations of PEOPLE (human beings) who have so little food, live in pestilence and disease all because of little to no pest control. Rats, mice, locust, beetles, termites, flies, fleas, roaches, moths. Does this list sound familiar? Isn’t that what you deal with everyday?
Didn’t you just traps some rats last week? Wasn’t that you who treated a home for fleas? I got an idea-why don’t you just stop that for a month or two and see what happens. How long would it be until the grain beetles took over? The roaches? Pick your pest and do some numbers-you’ve got that part of the pest control knowledge base down right? Now multiply that total times 68,400. That’s the number of pest control jobs in the U.S. according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. (seems low to me too) That will give you the total of just one single pest you and 68 k of your colleagues keep at bay.
Let’s use german roaches as an example. I’d do flies but there isn’t a calculator big enough to run the numbers. You kill one female with her ootheca–best case scenario you’ve stopped 48- Now add your teammates around the country and all total we’ve gotten 3,283,200. Not impressed? Well you do know that if this roach had optimum conditions, just one female and her offspring could number close to 60,000 in one year. So the total that you and your allies have kept in check now? 4,104,000,000. I think that’s billions- I’m not sure.(ask someone in congress-this is chump change to them) Now if you really want to get crazy, do the math for 2 years, (98,496,000,000). Now remember this is all just from one female roach you and your colleagues killed each. It doesn’t take it account the 1000’s not only you see and deal with but your 68 thousand co-workers as well. Now try running those numbers. They pale in comparison & that’s not even a fraction of the time frame or number of pests some whole nations of PEOPLE, HUMAN BEINGS, have been dealing with out of control pest populations. Why? Well, bottom line is because they don’t have you.
So the next time you’re in your little bug truck heading to a phantom mouse call or to spray an already dead bug and no matter what you say you know you won’t be appreciated. Or when that tree hugger accosts you and tells you how you and your little shiny hand pump sprayer is polluting the world. The next time you realize it was your detective work that solved a puzzling pest problem that no one else had a clue about. The next time you run into a ho hum and a unthankful client. Just be Thankful and realize that person may not realize your importance to their life and well being. But you do, so just break out your calculator and remind yourself of that once in awhile….there are a GREAT number of reasons you are worth more than you think.