Since Norway rats are not good climbers and prefer damp places, they are most likely to be found in basements, garages, sheds or barns. Rats may live or gain access near the foundations of buildings so be sure to clear brush away and seal up any cracks. |
Rats like basements because they are quiet and peaceful, offering a safe area for the rodents to escape the predators that exist outside. Rats in a basement will chew on anything and everything. They will also leave trails of feces and urine to mark their passing. To get rid of rats in the basement, purchase some large, snap traps and bait them with peanut butter or marshmallows.
Basements are prone to rats because of how easily foundations shift and crack. To kill rats in the basement, resist the urge to clean the area out. Doing this will only drive the rats into new areas of the home. First and foremost, go outside and close all of the cracks or openings that have let the rats inside. Until you do this, rats will come and go as they please. The rats will have no reason to investigate your traps, and new rats may move in during the process. When all has been repaired, look through the basement for areas where the rats have been active. You will likely see chewed areas, places with urine puddles, body oil markings, and droppings. Do not clean up what you find. Leave these areas alone with the addition of a baited snap trap. The rats left inside will eventually become hungry. The baited traps will be in areas where the rodents spend time, and the peanut butter on the trigger will be too much to resist.
Before you set out the traps, seal off any holes or openings that are allowing the rats access to your home. Until these areas are sealed, rats will continue to enter the home. Place the snap traps in the basement along walls and near grease marks. Rats will usually travel the same paths, often along walls or against other partitions, instinctually avoiding open spaces. Once the traps are set, monitor them daily to ensure they are working properly and that rats are removed as they are caught. It is very important to clean up after the rats once they have been eliminated from the home. Rat feces contain pheromones that attract other rats. Leaving the basement full of rat residue will only draw more rats inside.
Mice generally enter buildings at ground level through very small openings and can be found anywhere from the basement to the attic. They will build nests in the space between double walls, floor joists and concealed, enclosed spaces in cupboards or under counters.
The first line of defence is to rodent-proof the building to prevent more animals from coming in. Keeping mice and rats out of buildings, however, is no small feat. Settling of the ground or drying of green wood in new buildings may cause cracks or gaps in walls or door frames. Physical damage such as a broken cover on a floor drain, chipped concrete beneath a door, punctured ventilating screens, a broken basement window, or cracks in the foundation can all provide access points for rodents.
Quick dry cement is best for sealing holes on the outside of the house. Six mm metal screening should be placed over dryer vents and other ventilation openings, and under open porches and sheds. Steel wool can be used around pipes in the kitchen, bathroom and basement. All openings for water pipes, electric wire, telephone wires, sewer pipes, drain spouts and vents must be sealed, and doors and windows must be tight-fitting. Plastic sheeting, screening, or wood are unsuitable as mice and rats will chew through them.
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