In 2008, the World Health Organisation reported that the last sixty years had brought significant changes in ecology, climate and human behaviour that favoured the development of urban pests .
The presence of such arthropods, rodents, other vertebrates and micro-organisms in proximity to humans represents a significant hazard for public health. This arises from the possibility that pests can act as physical and mechanical vectors for the introduction and spread of pathogens, diseases and possible allergens into human and animal populations. These organisms can also cause direct and indirect damage to building structures and their contents which can result in significant economic losses for commercial businesses, and households. In addition, they potentially can cause deterioration in the quality of life, including a psychological impact.
Arising from a need to address these concerns, the activities of disinfestation and the control of insects, rodents, other vertebrates and any consequential disinfection of micro-organisms have been developed as a service and are referred to collectively as the Pest Management industry.