Stretching across the continent, rats are a familiar problem. As frequent visitors to homes and businesses, homeowners and business owners see them indoors. They are nasty vermin that destroy structures, utility lines, and property. Also, rodents are known for spreading germs, bacteria, and diseases and being a major health concern. Where few can catch a glance in their peripherals of a rat’s movement, rodents are fairly elusive creatures. Once they move inside, rodents can be difficult to remove, generally requiring a professional. Where there are two more common rats in the area, Animal Pest Management would to discuss Roof and Norway Rats.
What Do Roof Rats Look Like?
Roof rat weighs in anywhere between 5 and 12 ounces with their body measuring at 6 to 8 inches long and their tail is another 6”to 8” long. The fur of a roof rat is smooth to the touch and their coloring is in several variations of whites, blacks, and gray. With fur covering their body, the ears are only scarcely covered. Roof rats also feature pointy muzzles and large eyes.
How Do Roof Rats Get in a House?
With their incredible talents of agility and climbing skills, roof rats tend to travel along power lines and rooftops, given their name. Their invasion opportunity usually stems from damage on the roof. When they get inside, they are drawn to occupy the attic spaces that are above the ceilings, behind the walls, and just above the cabinets. Outdoors, roof rats stick to the dense vegetation and trees. Roof rats prefer warmer temperatures, and though they are found across the U.S., they are heavily populated around seaports.
Norway Rat Identification
Norway rats burrow and gnaw through California and they are also known as sewer rats. Norway rats actually are believed to originate from Asia, though it is uncertain and are found throughout the world. Norway rats have smaller eyes and shorter tails compared to other rat species. Also, their fur is coarse and brown with scattered black hairs and the underside ranges from shades of gray to white.
Norway Rat Home Entry Points
Like most rats, Norway rats are nocturnal but will be active during the day if the need arises. These rats tend to barge into homes and businesses in the fall but can do it any time of year; usually due to scarce water/food sources or to escape predators and extreme weather. Usually, Norway rats are social rodents and choose to burrow closely to one another. Their talents include incredible gnawing power as they have been known to gnaw through plastic and even lead pipes to reach a water source. These rats will likely be seen in farmlands, fields, and nearby structures. They are drawn to loosen soil to burrow in such as along riverbanks, under garbage and wood piles as well as under slabs. If they make it indoors, they are attracted basements where they can make shelters beneath piles of debris or other undisturbed places. These rats can cause excessive and expensive damage, contaminate food, and can spread a number of bacteria and viruses that can lead to serious illnesses such as cowpox virus, plague, jaundice, trichinosis, salmonellosis, and rat-bite fever. Additionally, rats can bring in fleas and the illnesses they cause as well.