- Posted by Lance
- On February 26, 2017
- 0 Comments
Identifying Common Rodent Pests
Rats and mice are very rarely welcome guests. Some eccentric pet owners will tell you they make great companions and others keep them to feed their snakes, but otherwise, people generally do not want to share a living space with them. Rodents are known to carry many diseases, and were likely responsible for the Black Plague that wiped out a large portion of Europe in the Middle Ages. Here in North Carolina, we have multiple species of rodent considered pests to homeowners. Let’s discuss a few of the more common ones below:
The house mouse is a master of survival. You can think of it as the secret agent, or maybe ninja, of rodent species. House mice are known for having very attuned senses. They hear extremely well, have a finely tuned sense of smell, can see in the dark and are so attuned to their surroundings you will likely not catch them unaware. They can also enter your home through the smallest holes, of less than a quarter inch, by compressing their body and squeezing through. House mice are around four inches long and gray.
Deer mice are also in the Research Triangle area but are more likely to populate rural areas. They are a little bigger than house mice and generally light to reddish brown. They are less likely to gather around people, which is why they are mostly in rural areas, but sometimes they will be found in barns, sheds or garages. When found in farmers’ grain, there is a concern of deadly disease being passed.
Roof rats are almost like squirrels without tails due to their behavior. They like to gather and store nuts and seeds like a squirrel might. Roof rats are also very skilled climbers who love to live up high. This will usually be either in a tree or at the top of a building, hence the name roof rat. After scaling the walls of the building, they will find a way in near the roof and make their home in attics or the top levels. They are about a foot long and darker than most rodents.
An even more populous rat, also called the house rat or common rat, is the Norway rat. This rat can get frighteningly large, at a foot and a half long. Most are around a foot long, though. Their coloring varies from animal to animal, so some will be gray, others brown and others more reddish. They love to live around humans and are found in most cities where they are happy to eat just about anything. Norway rats will eat trash, cockroaches and any food left lying around someone’s house. Naturally, they also carry diseases.
With any of these pests, they are not healthy to have around you, your pets or your children. If you suspect any of these rodent pests of being in your home, contact a local Raleigh-Durham area pest control company quickly, before the infestation grows out of control. One female roof rat, for example, can have over 40 young per year!