Rodents can cause destruction, disease, and danger.
Many property owners try to deal with a rodent infestation by putting out a couple of mouse traps. However, such efforts are rarely successful. While a trap may eliminate an individual rodent or two, it does nothing to prevent rodents from gaining access to the building, nor does it eliminate the rodent's plentiful offspring.
Species such as the deer mouse, white footed mouse, house mouse, Norway rat and roof rat frequently are found infesting homes and businesses across Bucks County. For property owners, this is a serious situation. Not only are rodent infestations responsible for costly damage to property but also they are infamous for spreading numerous dangerous diseases.
Accordingly, it is imperative that homeowners act with haste when they believe that they have a rodent infestation. Hiring a pest management professional ensures a swift end to the current problem as well as the prevention of future infestations. With regular treatments, it is possible to deter all rodent activity.
Rodents are four-legged rodents that mostly are covered in heavy fur. However, appearance varies greatly between species.
The deer mouse has reddish-brown or gray fur that mimics the fur on local deer species. Measuring as much as nine inches from the nose to the tip of the tail, the deer mouse has a rounded body and a white underbelly.
The smaller house mouse typically only grows to about four inches in length. Their sleek, thin bodies differentiate them from the deer mouse as does their darker brown or black hair.
On its feet and stomach, the white footed mouse is covered with bright white fur. They are approximately the same size as deer mice, and on their backs they may have reddish-brown or gray fur.
Sometimes measuring a full 16 inches long, the Norway rat can be a fearsome sight. Their bodies are long, sleek and covered in smooth gray or brown fur. Scaly skin covers the ears and tail of this species.
Roof rats may be mistaken for Norway rats because they are a similar length. However, roof rats tend to have much bulkier bodies, and their gray or brown fur is shaggy. The tail and ears are covered in scaly skin.
Considered omnivorous, it is possible for rodents to survive on just about anything. When living in the wild, most rodent species appear to prefer foods such as leaves, stems, blossoms, bark, fungus, seeds, nuts and grains.
However, some rodents do not restrict themselves to a plant-based diet. Insects and arthropods provide sources of protein. Additionally, some larger rodents are known to eat smaller rodents and mammals, and it is not unusual to see rodents feeding from animal carcasses.
With the rodent's omnivorous dietary habits, it follows that kitchens and pantries are irresistible. Everything from bread and pasta to lunch meat and hot dogs will appeal to rodents. Even pet food frequently is consumed.
Rodents are found in virtually every continent and climate. Extremely adaptable, they have learned to thrive on mountains as well as on deserts and prairies. Both urban and suburban areas are particularly attractive to rodents because of the proximity of people, which means multiple ready sources of food, water and shelter.
Many rodent species live in underground burrows that they excavate themselves or that were abandoned by other small mammals. Frequently, these burrows are well concealed beneath fallen trees, the root system of a standing tree or a large rock. Hollow trees are yet another excellent option for nesting.
When they live in close proximity to people, their nests may be discovered in wood piles or yard debris piles. Any open spaces beneath decks or outdoor stairs may be used, but some rodents will simply dig a burrow in the garden.
Indoors, rodents seek dark, remote spots in which to nest. Nests have been discovered beneath large appliances, beneath the subfloor, in drawers and closets or even in upholstered furniture.
Wherever they nest, rodents tend to forage for plants and other fibrous materials to make a soft lining. Hair, fur, feathers, shredded insulation, fabric, paper and other materials may be used for lining.
PROBLEMS WITH RODENTS
Rodents cause massive property damage both indoors and out. Determined to enter human habitations in search of food and shelter, they chew on small cracks and holes in building exteriors until the hole is large enough to allow them access. Once inside, the gnawing continues, with rodents chewing on wires, pipes, wood frames, sheetrock, furniture and other items.
The rodent's habit of gnawing on everything is known to be responsible for electrical shorts and fires as well as plumbing leaks. The species will shred books, documents, clothing, towels, sheets and other linens to gain nesting material. Furniture, draperies and rugs all may be destroyed by rodents.
Nocturnal rodents are anxious to escape the notice of people and other predators. Not only do they try to accomplish this by being most active at night but also they try to move within walls or through other routes that provide cover.
Nonetheless, when an infestation is particularly large, rodents may be forced to forage during the daylight or to begin moving more openly. It is at this time that the infestation becomes impossible to ignore.
Rodents generally tend to avoid confrontation with people. Nonetheless, such circumstances do arise, and these pests are known to react with aggression when cornered or threatened. Bites and scratches, which will require medical attention, frequently are reported by human victims.
One of the reasons why rodents are such troubling pests is their propensity for spreading serious diseases. Scientists estimate that rodents may transmit as many as 40 separate illnesses to human victims. Bites and scratches may be responsible for the spread, but so is contact with dead rodents, rodent waste products or the fleas and ticks with which rodents are infested.
Some of the most common illnesses associated with rodents include Hantavirus, bubonic plague and rat-bite fever. Food poisoning, also known as Salmonellosis, is common in households where infestations are underway. People who suspect an infestation and suffer symptoms like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fever and muscle aches are encouraged to contact their doctor.
SIGNS OF A RODENT INFESTATION
Typical signs of a rodent control issue include:
• Squeaking and rustling sounds from behind walls • Gnaw marks on interior and exterior surfaces and objects • Live or dead rodents around the property • Rodent droppings
Effective tips to avoid prevent rodent issues include the following:
• Keep garbage cans clean • Use only lidded garbage cans • Ensure that gutters and downspouts are clear • Do not let vegetation touch building exteriors • Eliminate indoor and outdoor clutter • Repair water leaks • Immediately wipe up spills and crumbs • Store food only in glass or metal containers with lids
Determining the difference between a mouse and a rat is a homeowner’s main dilemma where extermination is concerned. That is because species identification can play a crucial role in successfully eliminating a rodent problem.
Additionally, DIY treatment methods often fail because they are not powerful enough or because they are not used properly.
A licensed rodent exterminator has a variety of techniques to end the infestation. These include methods of excluding rodents from re-entering the building as well as traps and chemical control.
If you suspect a rodent control issue in your Bucks County home or office, call the professional team of licensed exterminators at SafeGuard Pest Control, LLC today. READ MORE RAT & MOUSE CONTROL