True story (original)...
I once oversaw the management of a small downtown office
building in Phoenix which was leased in part to a major regional
bank. The bank kept complaining of scorpions in the building.
Desert scorpions are small critters with a nasty sting, much like a
bee sting. And, the bank's secretaries would sit on the floor to go
through bottom file drawers and sometimes would get stung on the
So the building manager called the pest control company and they
sprayed the building. Still got complaints. Sprayed again. Still
Clearly another strategy was needed. The pest control contractor
pointed out that scorpions are unusual in downtown Phoenix and
there were no complaints from other tenants on other floors of the
building. He and the building manager concluded that the bank
itself was bringing the scorpions into the building from their
record center warehouse out in the desert. They alerted the bank to
this source of the problem, but the bank refused to take any
counter measures and continued to complain that it was a building
After several more sprayings, we started to get concerned about
the risks of putting more insecticide into the building. Our pest
control contractor was adamant that sprayings would do no good if
scorpions kept being reintroduced into the building with each
delivery to the bank from its records warehouse. So I asked the
pest control contractor and the building manager to look into the
possibility of environmentally safer biological controls such as
natural enemies of the scorpion.
A few days later I received a copy of a memorandum from the
building manager to the bank facilities department. He had also
posted a copy of this memo on the bank employees' bulletin
"Building management recognizes recent employee complaints of
scorpions in the bank's records management areas. We have attempted
to use pesticides but fear that increasing the level of pesticide
could pose a health risk for some employees.
"Because scorpions are native to our desert country and appear
to be entering the building in the storage boxes delivered from the
bank's desert warehouse, we have researched safer natural
biological controls such as those which keep scorpions in check in
their desert environment. We have found that scorpions have only
one natural enemy.
"Should there be any further complaints from the bank or its
employees on this matter, building management will be pleased to
introduce rattlesnakes into the records management areas."
We had no more complaints.