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Pest Nuisances

This page provides exampes of local pest control and nuisance provisions in Washington State. It is part of MRSC's series on Nuisances.


The examples listed are among the more frequent pest nuisances. Some are addressed through general nuisance ordinances, while others are regulated by zoning provisions, particularly performance standards.


Beekeeping - Apiaries


  • Lynnwood Municipal Code Sec. 10.08.080 - Caterpillars as public nuisance - Abatement procedure
  • Kent Municipal Code Ch. 8.07.050 - Weeds and Vegetation - Duty to abate vegetation infested with caterpillars
  • Seattle Department of Transportation Tent Caterpillars

Gypsy Moths


West Nile Virus Information


Rat infestation is a problem because of a rat population's ability to quickly multiply, causing damage to property and creating health hazards. Problems with rats often occur following the demolition of buildings and clearing of land. Several local governments, such as Kirkland, have enacted specific provisions for this problem.

General information on the eradication of rats is available from various Cooperative Extension agencies on the Internet and from the U.S. Department of Health. Ch. 17.15 RCW requires that all agencies with pest control responsibilities follow the principals of integrated pest management.

General Pest Information

  • Pests, Washington State Department of Health
  • Pest Program, Washington State Department of Agriculture
  • Kirkland Municipal Code Sec. 21.41.309 - Kirkland Property Maintenance Code, Pest Elimination - General provisions requiring all structures to be kept free from insect and rodent infestation

Last Modified: May 23, 2018