April 4, 2023
Rats: Control, Tips & Prevention
There’s nothing fun about finding rats around your home or property. Rats have been plaguing humans for centuries, famous for their continuously-growing sharp teeth, their desire for human food, their tendency to get into homes and buildings and create nests, and their health problems – rats are the essence of a pest. Not only are rats unhealthy animals to have around your home or business, the damage rats do can be extensive and costly depending on the size of the infestation. Because of these, rat extermination is needed.
Instincts: Rats are instinctively wary of things new to their environment, including rat control measures such as traps and bait, and colonise in attics, burrows, under concrete and porches, in wall voids, and other hard-to-reach places.
Disease: Rats can harbor and transmit a number of serious diseases. They can also introduce disease-carrying parasites such as fleas and ticks into your home.
It is recommended that anyone experiencing a rodent infestation to contact a pest control professional to arrange for a consultation.
DAMAGE CAUSED BY RATS
Rats consume and contaminate food and animal feed. They also damage containers and packaging materials in which food and feed are stored. Species of rats such as Norway rats and Black rats cause problems by gnawing on electrical wires and wooden structures (doors, ledges, in corners, and in wall material) and tearing up insulation in walls and ceilings for nesting.
Norway rats may undermine building foundations and slabs with their burrowing activities. They may also gnaw on all types of materials, including soft metals such as copper and lead as well as plastic and wood. If roof rats are living in the attic of a residence, they can cause considerable damage with their gnawing and nest-building activities. They also damage garden crops and ornamental plantings.
Among the diseases rats may transmit to humans or livestock are:
Hantavirus – a potentially lethal virus if humans come in contact with rat urine or feces.
Rat bite fever – from the saliva of a rat, it comes from rats biting humans.
Bubonic plague – the famous disease that nearly wiped out humanity during the Middle Ages was eventually traced back to parasites like fleas carried by rats.
Rickettsial diseases – various forms of Typhus fall into this category and can also be carried by rat-borne parasites.
Leptospirosis – a disease transmitted from contact with rat urine that is serious enough to cause humans to bleed in the lungs.
Rat extermination is important because if not, there will be humongous damage to properties and diseases can be transmitted to humans affecting various body functions and systems.
Signs of Rats
How do you know if you have rats? Here are a few of the common signs:
You might find these in places like cupboards, cabinets, and other areas in the home where rats like to hide.
If you hear gnawing and the sounds of scampering in the walls or around the house you might have rats.
A rat’s teeth are constantly growing and that means they have to chew on hard things like wood to trim them back. You might find holes in walls and wood.
Rats get coated with dirt and they like to rub against the walls to find their way around a room’s perimeter since they can’t see so well. You can often find smudges as an indication of rats, but they can often stay on walls for a long time, so it might be from an old infestation.
If you see one rat, there’s a good chance there are a bunch more hiding in nests or burrows that you can’t see.
Nests and burrows
Check behind shelves, boxes, behind the fridge, and anywhere a rat might use as a hiding space.
If you have seen any of these common signs or think that you might have rats on your property, call a PestBusters – Pest Control Malaysia control expert at +603-2181 6898 / +603 2181 6858 or contact us online to set up an appointment.
Prevent Rodent Infestations
Prevention methods should be implement early in order to maintain a rodent-free home. If it is too late then, rat exterminations is needed in order to make the house free from that rodents. Rodents reproduce rapidly, and small populations become full-blown infestations in very little time.
Keep any possible food sources away from rodents. Small crumbs and garbage are popular sources of infestation, as are dry goods such as grains and cereals. These should be kept in sealed metal or glass containers to prevent contamination. Fruits and vegetables should also be stored properly, and resulting waste should never be left in sinks or on counters.
Cardboard objects prove attractive to rodents, as they tend to chew them up for use in their nests.
Because of the rodents’ body plan, they are capable of squeezing through spaces that appear to be much too small for them. All such holes should be sealed to prevent entry and reentry of rodents.
Rodents are not a simple pest to eradicate from a structure; they are intelligent creatures with an imperative to survive at any cost. Comprehensive rodent control should consist of four steps:
- Inspection. Thorough inspection is absolutely imperative to effective rodent control. The most important consideration in a rodent inspection is to identify all access points that rodents are using to gain access to the structure(s). Without a thorough understanding of how the rodents are entering and/or exiting the structure, effective control is nearly impossible.
- Exclusion. Once the access points have been identified, structural improvements must be made to correct the gaps or holes. These repairs can range from the simple to the complex, and should be checked regularly as they will often break down with time and/or increased rodent pressure. Exclusion should be performed by a trained professional with the most appropriate material(s) for the situation. Our service technicians bring their expertise and their knowledge of rodent behaviors, which is the ideal combination for effective rodent exclusion.
- Trapping. Once access areas have been excluded, rodents will become increasingly desperate and trapping will become much more effective. While trapping can be employed before exclusion work has been performed, the results are often spotty and inconclusive (adults and more experienced rodents can have a tendency to become “trap-shy” and avoid new items placed into their environment). Once exclusion work has been performed, previous access to food and water has now been taken away and traps become much more appealing to the rodents.
- Exterior baiting. Once rodents have been excluded from the structure and all rodents on the inside have been trapped and disposed of, your best tool is population control. An effective baiting program will reduce rodent populations on the outside of the structure(s), thereby reducing the risk of re-infestation. Rodents will always be prevalent in the Pacific Northwest; with an effective baiting program (with frequent re-inspection), you can ensure that your home will be protected from rodent entry.
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