Mail droppings are often the bane of many start up businesses, since they rob time and manpower from the company at large, while also posing significant problems with overall office sanitation. The droppings themselves may appear in various forms, depending on what size and species of mail a business receives.
Identifying Mail Droppings
Even in offices that are frequently cleaned, mail droppings can accumulate rapidly in corners, behind desks, and underneath wastepaper baskets. One should be ever alert for the tell-tale signs of a mail infestation, and mail droppings are a certain signature that undesirable mail has moved into the building.
One of the most frequent types of mail dropping is the dot, or punch dropping. This is a general sign that legal or well formatted mail has been piling itself up and nesting in a nearby desk. While unsavory in appearance, these droppings are inert and relatively benign. Generally, it is best to use a vacuum cleaner to remove the droppings, then spray a disinfectant onto the surface where they had accumulated.
The shred dropping is normally associated with an influx of financial mailings, such as the Common Proxy (Fiscus vulgaris) or the occasional Corporate Chargecard Offer (Creditum mercatus.) This dropping is most often found lying in close proximity to a wastepaper basket, as this is the favored nesting site of financial mailings. Be sure to wear latex gloves while cleaning these, as they have been known to harbor bacteria and inflict paper-cuts. Once should consider emptying the wastepaper basket more often, as this destroys the incentive for these mailings to nest.
Of particular odiousness is the insert or flyer class of mail dropping. These are easy to spot, and should be policed up immediately, lest a high level infestation break out. They are noted for their garish colors, and use of poorly chosen fonts. They range in consistence from a flimsy newsprint, to a thick cardstock, but they all retain the same basic characteristic of being of noxious design. These should be rounded up and burned, though care should be taken not to inhale the vapors. By making sure all newspapers and magazines stay in a quarantined area (such as the restroom or lobby,) one can control possible infestations.
Humane Mail Control Practices
While no one disputes the irritating nature of mail and its droppings, current sentiment is toward more humane methods of mail control. While it was not uncommon two decades ago to lay spring loaded traps or poisoned stamps in order to discourage nesting, in the modern workplace few are left with the stomach for such cruel methods.
A current popular means of control is the In Box and Out Box, which act as sanctioned nesting places for mail of all sorts. These are placed at strategic points throughout the office, in the mail traffic areas of mail, and catch and hold it until it can humanely be disposed of. Larger offices are often known to employ an in-house staff to deal with these live traps.