Pest Control Technician Kaihangarau Patu Orotā

Pest control technicians identify and remove pests, such as insects, rats and mice, from buildings and properties. 

Qualified pest control technicians can choose to register with the Pest Management Association of New Zealand.

Pest control technicians may do some or all of the following:

  • inspect buildings and properties for signs of pests such as mice
  • identify pests, and develop and apply pest control plans
  • control pests through chemicals, traps, and shooting
  • advise on pest control and prevention
  • provide specialist services to food manufacturers, and airline and shipping import/exporters.

Pest control technicians who work in rabbit and possum control may need a firearms licence.

Physical Requirements

Pest control technicians need to:

  • have a good level of fitness, as they spend long periods on their feet and need to carry containers of chemicals
  • be comfortable working in confined spaces or at heights
  • have no breathing problems, or allergies to pests or dust.

Useful Experience

Useful experience for pest control technicians includes:

  • outdoor work with animals
  • work with chemicals and poisons.

Personal Qualities

Pest control technicians need to be:

  • careful and accurate, especially when dealing with poisons
  • good communicators
  • able to work well alone
  • good at solving problems.

They must not be squeamish, because they deal with pests such as rats and cockroaches.

Skills

Pest control technicians need to have knowledge of:

  • pests, and their biology and habits
  • how to safely use traps, pesticides and poisons
  • how to calculate dosages and mix chemicals 
  • laws about health, safety, hazardous substances and biosecurity.

Conditions

Pest control technicians:

  • work varied hours, including evenings and weekends, and work longer hours in summer
  • work in restaurant kitchens, shops, factories, hospitals, and homes
  • work in dirty and cramped places, and outside in all types of weathers. They wear protective clothing that can be hot, and work with chemicals that can be hazardous if not used correctly
  • travel locally to their clients.

Subject Recommendations

There are no specific secondary education requirements for this job, but NCEA Level 2 English, biology, chemistry and maths are useful.

Pest Control Technicians can earn around $22-$34 per hour.

Pay for pest control technicians varies depending on skills, qualifications and experience.

  • Trainee pest control technicians usually start on $22 to $24 an hour.
  • Experienced pest control technicians usually earn $24 to $34 an hour.

Pest control technicians running their own business may earn more than this, but their income depends on the success of their business.

Source: Pest Management Association of New Zealand, 2019.

Pest control technicians may progress to set up their own pest control business, or move into management.

Pest control technicians may specialise in removing:

  • animals such as rats and possums
  • insects
  • birds.

Years Of Training

1-2 years of training usually required.

There are no specific requirements to become a pest control technician. However, if you don't have a qualification, you can only work when supervised by someone qualified in pest management.

To become a qualified pest control technician, you need to:

  • gain a New Zealand Certificate in Pest Operations (Level 3) in Urban Pest Control, or Rural Pest Control, while you work as a trainee
  • have a full Class 1 driver's licence.

Careerforce and the Primary ITO oversee pest control qualifications.

You can register with the Pest Management Association of New Zealand.

Pest Control Technician