Rats and mice are mysterious pests. They can invade your home and hide in secret places that are hard, or impossible, to inspect. Why do they do this? What things prompt a rat or mouse to want to live in your Durham home? The first thing is food. When these rodents find food in your yard or near your exterior walls, they sometimes go one step further and enter your home. That leads us to the second reason they get inside. While a rat or mouse can chew a hole to access your home, they typically use available entry points; they enter your home because there is an opportunity. The last factor to consider is whether or not you have taken steps to keep rodents out and addressed rodent activity around your home. We call this rodent control. If you lack ongoing rodent control, rats and mice may not have sufficient deterrents to keep them out. Join us today as we discuss how to tell if rats and mice have gotten into your home, what to expect from rodents in Durham, how food and other attractants lead to infestations, and what works to control rodents when they find a way into your home. Our goal today is to provide a well-rounded guide for rodent prevention and control that will give you what you need to address backyard rodents and home-invading rodent pests. If you have an urgent need for rodent pest control in Durham, jump to our contact page to schedule a service visit. The Eco Man Pest Solutions provides industry-leading pest control in Durham and the surrounding area. We'll help you find the right solution.
Signs You May Be Dealing With A Rodent Infestation
Prevention starts in your yard. Before you consider removing attractants, you should establish whether or not you already have rats or mice in your home. Some signs are easy to detect. Others are not quite so easy. Let's start with the easy signs.
- Noises in your walls. If you hear bumping and scraping in your walls as you're about to go to sleep, there is a good chance you have a rodent infestation. But rodents don't always make these noises. In fact, it doesn't happen quite as often as you might think.
- Noises in your attic. If you hear bumping and thumping in your attic at dusk or during the night, you have nocturnal animals up there. Rats and mice are active at night and make these noises. Squirrels are active during the day and will make noises during the day unless a momma squirrel is raising pups up there.
- Undetectable noises. How do you hear noises that are undetectable? You look to your dog or cat for help. Dogs and cats can hear things you can't. If they're acting funning in the kitchen, you probably have a rodent infestation.
- Droppings. One of the best signs to search for is rodent droppings. You may easily see droppings on attic insulation or on power boxes and other utilities outside your home. Rodent droppings are black and about the size of a grain of rice. Often, these droppings are hidden. You'll need to look for them behind your oven, under the fridge, or in the backs of sink cabinets.
- Holes. Rats and mice make access holes. They don't need a large hole. Rats can squeeze through a gap the size of a quarter. Mice are small rodents that only need a gap the size of a dime. On the interior of your home, look down low and in protected locations. Outside your home, inspect exterior doors, windows, utilities, and vents.
When you find evidence of rodents in your home, it is time to contact a professional. Rats and mice are hard to control and a multi-pronged strategy is often needed to ensure complete control of these pests.
It's Very Dangerous To Have Rodents In Your Home
If you don't have rodents in your home, it is helpful to have proper motivation to keep them out. Why? Because rodents are dangerous. Not directly. It is rare for a rat to attack a human and even rarer for a mouse to do so. They are dangerous in an indirect way. Here are some examples.
- While a mouse is a tiny rodent, it can present a serious threat to your safety. Really? Yes, really. A little mouse can chew on a live wire and cause a house fire. Rats can do this too.
- When a rodent moves about in your home, it leaves urine and droppings. Both are potential sources of disease. A common disease associated with rodents is Hantavirus. Check the resources pages at the CDC for information and symptoms.
- When rodents enter your home, they don't come alone. They carry ticks and fleas. These parasites are associated with diseases such as Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Lyme disease, Murine typhus, ehrlichiosis, bartonellosis, and more. How many ticks can a little mouse have? Seed ticks are the size of a pencil tip, a little mouse can have as many as a hundred in its fur.
- Rodents chew holes and may allow rainwater into your home. Moisture damage can lead to mold problems and lung illness.
- Rats and mice climb in trash, sewers, and other dirty environments. When they do this, they can pick up bacteria such as salmonella or E. coli. These microorganisms can cause serious flu-like symptoms.
It is not good to have rodents in your home, even an itty bitty mouse. It is well worth the effort to roll your sleeves up and remove attractants around your home. Let's take a look at how you can do this.
Factors That Attract Rodents To Your Home
Many things attract rodents to Durham homes. Some of them are likely to surprise you. Attractants make rats and mice want to hang out near your home and enter your home. If you remove attractants, you'll reduce the likelihood of having a rat or mouse infestation.
- Seeds are a preferred food source for mice and rats. If you have bird feeders hanging off the sides of your home, you have a strong attractant for these pests.
- All rodents love nuts. If you have nut-producing trees, it is wise to stay on top of cleaning those nuts up.
- Domestic rodents eat garbage. Ensure that all exterior trash receptacles are covered. Refrain from overfilling your trash as this will leave the cover open slightly and allow the smell of your trash to attract rodents from a distance. It is also best to keep your receptacles clean and deodorized as much as possible.
- Rodents have poor eyesight and must use their other sense to get around in your yard. One sense they depend on is their sense of touch. They use their whiskers and fur to touch objects around them. A yard that is free of ground objects is resistant to these animals because they'll have difficulty traversing it.
- Rodents prefer yards that have places to hide. They hide under your deck, inside wood piles, under stacked branches, in your landscaping, and more. Seal exterior structural voids with hardware cloth to keep rodents out. Keep your grass trimmed, remove weeds, trim bushes, and stack wood away from your home to deter rodents.
- Rodents are attracted to tight spaces and prone to exploring tiny gaps and holes. A caulking gun or cans of expanding foam can seal enticing gaps and holes and keep rodents from using them to enter your home.
- Rats and mice love to scale trees just like squirrels. They may use trees near your home to get on your roof. Trim branches to prevent this. Keep in mind that the sides of your home may have surfaces that are climbable. Protect gable vents with screen material or hardware cloth to keep rodents out.
Rats and mice are small animals, but they are resourceful. They can climb, jump, gnaw, and squeeze their way into places you wouldn't expect. Altering conditions around your home can significantly deter them.
The Most Effective Rodent Control For Your Home
When it comes to removing rodents and keeping rodents out, it pays to hire a trained and experienced professional. A professional will use several control products and methods to provide a complete strategy that takes into consideration the behavior patterns and habitat preferences of these pests. If you have an indoor infestation or want to get ongoing rodent control for the exterior of your home, contact The Eco Man Pest Solutions for assistance in Durham. Our technicians have a track record of providing the highest level of service. We can help you understand your rodent control needs and provide you with options for monitoring rodent pressures, reducing rodent populations, and excluding rodents from your home. We're here to help! Reach out to us by phone or hop over to our contact page and fill out the short form to tell us a little bit about your problem or concerns. We look forward to meeting and surpassing your expectations.
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