Homes and businesses are especially susceptible to rodents. Costly structure damages and the spreading diseases and other contaminants are often the result of rodents. Often people don’t know they have a rat problem until the infestation is exceptionally large. Pennsylvania has many common rodents in the area including rats. Among the rats prone to our borders are Norway rats and Roof rats. With that in mind, we at Stewart Termite and Pest Control would like to relate some basic information concerning roof rats.
What Do Roof Rats Look Like?
The fur of the roof rat is smooth and soft to the touch, generally colored a blend of black, brown, as well as several variations of gray, whites, and blacks. The fur is scarce on their ears and with distinctly pointed muzzles and large years they can be easily be identified. Roof rats weigh 5 – 12 ounces and measure 6 inches – 8 inches in length, with an additional 6-8 inches of tail.
Where Do Roof Rats Live?
Roof rats are appropriately named for their extraordinary abilities to climb great heights they are able to traverse slender power lines and rooftops with their remarkable agility and balance attributes. If roof rats managed to invade your home, it is likely do some sort of damage on your roof. Found nesting in attic spaces, areas just above ceilings, in the upper spaces of cabinets, as well as behind walls in your home, roof rats prefer higher areas. Roof rats will opt to nest in above ground vegetation to provide adequate protection, such as trees, when they are outside in their natural environments. Though they are perfectly content living outdoors, they are highly adaptable and can survive indoors just as easily. Generally, roof rats will invade homes and business in search for food and water when it is otherwise scarce. They will also escape the colder temperatures by going into warm buildings. With their high-rate of reproduction, their population can quickly spiral out of control; which is why it is crucial you invest in professional pest control services if you suspect or seen roof rats in your home or business. They will contaminate surfaces, food supply, as well as cost owners financially for needed repairs in the structure and utility lines.
How to Prevent Roof Rats; Take Away What They Eat, Drink & Hide in
Below are a few primary tips to minimize the risk of roof rat infestations that you can easily apply to protect your home.
1) Seal food. All food packaged in cardboard, paper, and flimsy plastics should be transferred to sealable, pest proof containers as roof rats can gnaw through these packaging examples with ease. Ensure pet food is also stored in sealable containers.
2) Secure Trash. The outdoor trash bins should be setup as far from the home as possible and be periodically washed with warm soapy water inside and out. Keep the lids closed and secure in between use.
3) Home Sealing & Repairs. Perform a quick assessment inside and outside your home. List the repairs for plumbing fixtures to eliminate the water supply. Install mesh coverings on ventilation and utility lines. Repair holes, gaps, and cracks in the structure with the appropriate application of caulk. Make certain any chimneys has a tight fitting cap and make any needed repairs and replace any missing, damaged, or loose roof shingles.
4) Landscaping Maintenance. The trees, grass, bushes, and other foliage need to be properly maintained year round. Keep the vegetation trimmed back away from the house, especially any trees or plants that connect with the roof.