Rats. They’re the houseguest no one wants to have. While they make excellent pets, being just as trainable and intelligent as dogs, it’s precisely these qualities that makes them such a bane when they move in of their own accord. They have excellent memories, so once they’ve found a food source, they can return to it again and again. They are quick to learn, know how to hide and breed rapidly – producing up to eight litters of four to seven pups a year. And because they’re so clever, once they’re in, they’re in and it usually takes professional help to resolve the problem.
While rats and other rodents can take up residence in your home at any time of year, winter can be a particularly bad time for pests. Rats need food, water, shelter and warmth – all the things that our homes provide. They then defecate and urinate freely, damage property, chew wires, and can spread some pretty serious diseases. In short, you don’t want them in your home. But how can you keep them out?
How to Keep Rats Out of Your Home
While professional pest control services, like Noosa Pest Management, can help with the removal of rodent infestations, it’s better for everyone if you can stop them getting in in the first place. These 5 steps can help.
1. Secure your home
Rats will only come into your house if you let them. That said, they can fit through holes of about an inch in diameter, so you need to ensure that any cracks or gaps in your building’s exterior are fully sealed with appropriate materials. Caulk, cement and plaster are ideal, but if you need to improvise, steel wool also works well. Don’t just jam the hole with paper because any rodent will easily chew through.
2. Don’t lay out a buffet
Like every other species, rats have evolved to survive. To do that, they need food. And they’re very good at finding it. If you grow fruit or vegetables in your garden and leave them unharvested, rats will move in. They will target any spilled food from bird feeders or pet bowls. And if you put any form of cooked food, meat or cheese in your compost bin, any local rats will find it. Once they’re near to your home they will start looking for other food sources. Your kitchen could be their paradise.
3. Take away shelter
Rats need somewhere to live. They can make perfectly good homes outside if they’re given the right materials. Unfortunately, our yards and gardens have instant rat kerb appeal. If you have a wood pile, thick vegetation, an old car or any other unused junk, rats can easily take possession. And when they’re living nearby it won’t take them long to consider upsizing into your warm and welcoming home. Keeping your outdoor space neat is a great deterrent.
4. Set safe traps
As a general rule, you don’t need to have a permanent rat bait presence. It’s not a safe thing to have in your home and can be environmentally unsound. But if you’ve seen rodents in the neighborhood or have noticed signs that make you suspect they’re there, cage traps can be a good idea. Even if you have kids and pets, it’s possible to find safe trap solutions. Bait can be used in areas where children, pets and other animals are unlikely to find it – such as your attic. But then you’re left with the problem of finding and removing the corpse. And trust us, a dead rat is just as big a problem as a living one.
5. Call in the professionals
A good pest control agent won’t just remove rodents from your home but help to make sure that they don’t get back in again. If you live in or around Charlotte, Noosa Pest Management can take care of your rat problems for you. Using the best botanical solutions and traps we will make sure that all rats and mice are evicted or exterminated, then we will inspect your property to make sure all entry points are identified and dealt with.
If you are worried about rats in your area, contact Noosa Pest Management today.