Rodent invasions are particularly common when excavation begins for new residential developments. When their natural burrows and food sources are disturbed, rodents will seek shelter in nearby homes. |
Rodents often enter through holes, cracks, vents and windows in foundations and crawl spaces. They can climb trees to enter from above through vents, fan turbines or holes in soffits and roofs. They can slip easily under garage doors and into storage sheds.
If a rodent can get his nose in a hole or crack, he can usually squeeze his body through. Mice can enter homes through holes just 1/4-inch wide, the width of a pencil. Rats can enter through holes the size of a quarter. Rodents usually enter homes in the fall as outdoor food sources disappear. They can climb up any rough surface, jump vertically more than a foot, and scurry along cables with ease.
The first defense against an infestation is to proof your home. Young rats can get through holes of less than 1cm, so it is important to seal any gaps. It is extremely serious if vermin are trying to get into your home even if they are not entering a direct living area. Any problem inside the home must be treated urgently.
Rodent invasions are particularly common when excavation begins for new residential developments. When their natural burrows and food sources are disturbed, rodents will seek shelter in nearby homes. Indications of a rat problem
The typical evidence to look for in your home and garden are:
Scratching - noises in walls, under the floor or under decking as vermin scurry around looking for food. Faeces – they leave dark, tapered (sausage shaped) droppings about 1 - 2cm long. Distinctive smell – rodents leave an ammonia-like smell that will be particularly strong in enclosed areas such as under cupboards, in loft spaces, garages, sheds or under decking. Damage – they have teeth that grow continuously and gnaw on wood, plastic and even mild steel to keep them trim. Rats can even cause fires by chewing through cables and wiring. Ripped food packaging – they will tear open all types of packaging to find food which may leave teeth marks. Nests – built in warm, hidden places using shredded material such as newspaper, plastic and fabrics. Nests will often contain young. Burrows - in gardens, especially in compost heaps or under sheds. They will also build nests under garden decking.
The best way to keep rodents out of your house is to eliminate food and water sources and control sanitation. Some of the things you can do to prevent rodents from invading your home include:
Seal all holes and cracks in foundation, siding and roof areas. Prohibit access to crawl spaces. Seal all pipe chases and wire conduits entering the house from outside. Wire mesh sealed with caulk or foam is an effective barrier
Repair leaks to remove moisture sources
Install thick weather-stripping on the bottoms of all exterior and garage doors
Clear leaves and debris away from foundation and trim back shrubbery and overhanging tree limbs
Store firewood and piles of bricks, stones or construction supplies far away from the house
Pick up fallen fruit from trees
Keep pet food and bird seed in well-sealed containers. Don't leave pet food out overnight
Store trash receptacles away from the house Ultrasonic repellers emit sound that is uncomfortable for rats but cannot be heard by humans. These may help as a deterrent, but we do not recommend them to solve existing infestations as rodents can quickly acclimatise to the ultrasound.
What Should I Do If Rodents Invade My Home?
Rodents spread potential disease with every step they take. Eliminating them as quickly as possible is extremely important to protect your family's health and safety.
For more helpful ideas, check out our main page here:
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