Pest problems often get put into broad categories: nuisances and hazards, insects or mammals. Some pests stand out from these labels as truly formidable invaders of human properties. Rats, for example, are chief among the invasive rodents you should worry about. If you wait to act on a rat problem until it’s noticeable, it is likely that a lot of damage has already been done.
Spotting Rats: What You Need To Look For
Rats are the largest of the rodents that will actually invade inside of properties. While there are larger yard pests like gophers and moles out there, rats specifically thrive in human dwellings. They don’t happen upon your yard or interior by mistake, rats search out the food and shelter that human properties provide. Here are the biggest factors to look for when trying to figure out if a rat problem has hit:
Appearance: Rats are large rodents with long, pointed faces and large front teeth. Unlike mice with their large, circular ears, rats have pinched ears that sit far back on their heads.
Habitat: Rats prefer to stick to dark, tight spaces. Because of this, they often nest inside of walls, vents, and crawl spaces, just out of sight but close enough to forage for food and water.
Behavior: Rats are territorial pests, meaning they aren’t likely to invade a property that’s already infested with mice or some other kind of competitor. However, if even a single rat shacks up on your property, it can quickly breed into a full-blown infestation.
The Problems Rats Bring
If a rat population does move in, it doesn’t take long before the adverse effects of their activity start to take shape. Aside from being easy to get and tough to get rid of, rats can pose all of the following problems for your property:
Damage: Because of their constantly growing front teeth, rats must chew on hard things in order to keep them filed down. This leads to gnawing marks on hard surfaces and materials.
Disease: The bubonic plague, or the black death, one of the worst outbreaks in human history, was believed to be caused by rats. That’s just one example of their well-known status as vectors for harmful diseases and parasites.
Odors: Even if you manage to avoid the worst of the damage and illness that a rat population can cause, there’s no avoiding the smell caused by all their droppings.
Rat Prevention Done Right
Because they are such notorious invaders of human property, people try all kinds of things to avoid or prevent rat populations. While you can find a lot of bogus solutions and methods touted online, the best prevention is the stuff that’s been tried and true for centuries. Here are some things you can do to reduce your risk of rats:
Food storage: Rats are foraging pests that look for any scraps or crumbs they can find. This includes inside of trash cans and stored food areas like pantries and cupboards. Secure these areas well to reduce their food supply.
Debris: Properties with excessive clutter or debris, both inside and outdoors, act as magnets for nesting rodents. Rats especially will hide and brood in these areas.
Cracks & holes: Rats can squeeze into tight spaces and dig or burrow through areas where cracks or faults provide them easy entry. Frequently check for and fix any entry points you find around your exterior.
The Safest Way From Parkway Pest Services
Because they are such persistent invaders, rats are a problem that you don’t want to be caught with. If you wait until the signs present themselves to do something about it, total rat control becomes an even taller order. Instead of wasting time or turning to unproven methods, the smart thing is to turn straight to the pest professionals. At Parkway Pest Services, our trained staff know exactly how to protect against future infestations and remove existing problems before they become risks to your health and property.
Don’t let a rat problem destroy your home or business, contact Parkway Pest Services to get started right away on proper pest control.