Rats- Who needs that?

What do you think of when you think of mice and rats? It's likely it isn't a pleasant thought. Throughout history rats have developed a bad rap as deadly disease spreaders, and this is not an inaccurate notion. Rats and mice have been known to host scores of infectious diseases. Salmonella, Hantavirus, Typhus, Meningitis, Lyme Disease, and Bubonic Plague are just a few of the life impacting illness' that can be transmitted through these rodents. These can be transmitted through bites, scratches, urine, as well as flea and tick bites that stem from these rodents.

So what attracts these rodents in the first place? Mice and rats want what we all want. A nice comfortable shelter, and readily available food are high on the priority list; the more easily accessible these items are the more attractive an option your home is for the rat. Food that is left out and available (both pet and people), unsecured trash receptacles, bird feeders with ample seed, and bountiful gardens make for happy rodents. Old appliances left in the yard make for ideal nesting spots and of course they are not opposed to squatting in your own home if it's easily entered. Gaps underneath doorways (they can squeeze through a quarter size hole), openings into crawl spaces, unscreened windows and roof vents, cluttered lawns, and trees and bushes within 6 feet of your home are like leaving out a welcome mat for the critters.

Once a rodent has identified your home as an easy target, there is not much that can deter them from entering. They are known for their razor sharp teeth that can gnaw through pretty much anything. Cement cinder blocks, and lead pipes aren't even a challenge. Rat teeth grow about 5 inches every year to make up for any tooth loss from gnawing through hard objects. Electrical wiring is also easy for them to chew through adding fire risk to the list of rat dangers.

To top this off once they have moved in they reproduce like crazy. A single female rat can entertain up to 500 partners in a 6 hour "heat" period which occurs multiple times a year, leaving her with as many as 2,000 offspring in a single year.

While you can rely on Flatline Pest Control as your Pest professionals to evict these rodents from your home, there are some simple things you can do to help prevent infestations in the first place, or at least make it a lot less comfortable for them to live there.

  1. Limit their access: Seal off crawl spaces, gaps under doorways, replace missing trailer panels, make sure windows are screened and secured. Screen roof vents. Make sure siding is intact, anything larger than a 1/4 inch hole is a rat door.

  2. Keep trees and bushes at least 6 feet away from your home structure. Branches hanging over your home are open invitations so keep these trimmed back.

  3. Cut off their food supply. Keep kitchen clean and food put away. Keep pet food in sealed storage containers and don't leave food out for your pets overnight. Keep trash receptacles secured and away from the house.

  4. Keep in mind that rats can sense a previous infestation. They can smell urine and droppings from previous rodents and take that as a sign that this has all they need and want to make a comfortable home. Therefore, a thorough cleaning after your infestation has been managed is highly recommended to prevent future infestations.

As always we are available for all of your pest control needs at 405-466-8145 www.flatlinepest.com

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