Rats and Mice – Oh My!
No one wants to be awakened in the middle of the night by the sound of rodents in their home. Unfortunately this year in Northern Alabama, it’s happening more than ever – and here is why. When spring came this year, so did an abnormal amount of rain. For a while there, it seemed to rain almost every day! While many people enjoy the rain, and only complain because they have to mow more often, it’s the increased rate of growth in the plants that has contributed to an increase in Rats and Mice. With an early and strong green up, rodents were able to get a faster start on their life cycles and reproduction this year. More food and more harbourage equals more problems! As the rodent population has grown, so has that of the snakes that feed on them.
Rodents in Rural Madison and Athens
Many homes in a more rural setting are surrounded by abundant sources of rodent food, water, and shelter. This can be anything from a drainage pond, to a farmer’s field, to a piece of open or wooded land. Rodents live in these areas year round, and feed off of the various plants, seeds, and nuts. When something happens to increase their supply of food, their population grows at a faster pace. As the plant growth returns to normal though, food becomes short, and they begin to look for a new home. Once Rodents find their way into your home or yard, they often have easier access to food and better shelter that’s more protected from predators. In cases like these, rodents will constantly be on the lookout for ways to invade your home and yard.
Rodent Problems in Huntsville and Madison City
In more established areas, rodents are still a problem. In fact due to poor sanitation habits, aging construction, and plentiful harbourage, problems can sometimes be even worse! Often in cities there are less mouse infestations, but more rat infestations. Rats love to gnaw, and easily exploit holes, gaps, and cracks to get at food or shelter. Rats have extremely hard teeth that are always growing, and have been known to chew through up to a half-inch of lead!
How to prevent Rodent Problems
When it comes to Rats and Mice, prevention is far better than dealing with an infestation! A few simple habits that can make a big difference are:
1. Make sure that trash is stored securely. Our trash is a haven for rodents who love to feed on the excess we throw away.
2. Check your foundation, home, air conditioning units, and garage for any holes or gaps that can be exploited by rodents to work their way in. A general rule of thumb is that Rats can fit through an opening the size of a quarter, and mice can fit through openings the size of a dime.
3. Keep lawns mowed, hedges and bushes well-trimmed, trees pruned away from the home, and any piles of storage away from your home or business. Rodents in an urban environment often only need a place to hide to become a problem. Be keeping your property well maintained you are taking that away from them!
4. Store any pet food, bird seed, etc., in something inaccessible to rats or mice. Remember they love to chew, and will easily work their way through bags to get at the food within. Rather than leaving food for pets out all day, make a habit of feeding them at specific times, and cleaning up anything left over. Leaving food lying around is a strong invitation to have rodent problems.
What to do if you have rodents
If you are already hearing a scratching noise in your wall, or if you’ve seen rats or mice around your home or yard, give us a call. We will come perform a free evaluation of your problem, and whether you choose to use our services or not you will get specific recommendations on steps you can take to help get it under control.
At Scout Pest Control, we are experts at excluding, trapping, baiting, and eliminating rodent problems from homes and businesses! Call for your free consultation today!
– Jared Toone