A pest is an animal that interferes with humans, our homes or our food. They are animals that through accident or design have impacted on our lives. Apart from the other problems associated with pests, such as damage and discomfort there is another major problem with them: they often carry diseases that humans can contract.
Often the disease uses the pest as a vector to get to us, other times, we are simply collateral damage, either way this is something we want to avoid. So what pests have which diseases?
Probably the most famous of all pest diseases is the bubonic plague, which was carried by rats (well, technically fleas on rats). The plague wiped out around a third of the European population and while rats still carry it we are immune to it.
Rodents also carry Typhus, Salmonella and a number of other diseases, making them one of the most dangerous pests to have in your home, especially as they soil your food and walk across kitchen surfaces.
Mosquitoes are also a dangerous pest, they carry malaria and a wide range of other diseases.
There are also a number of diseases carried by a variety of different birds, including Salmonella.