How much do you know about rats and mice? We'd be willing to bet that it is not nearly enough. While these domestic rodents are quite common, most Phoenix residents don't know all that much about them. When you don't know how rodents can impact your health, damage your property, and avoid your attempts to control them, they can make your life miserable. Today, we're going to share all of the basic facts you should know about common rodents and rodent pest control in Phoenix. When you're done with this article, you won't be a professional, but you'll know enough to prevent rats and mice from taking advantage of your hospitality—and harming you in the process. If you are currently dealing with a rodent pest control issue and would like immediate assistance, jump to our contact page for help. ACTION Termite & Pest Control provides effective rodent detection and control in the Phoenix area. With that said, let's get into our topics for today.
How To Identify Common Types Of Rodents In Phoenix
There are three types of rodents that commonly get into homes: Rats, mice, and squirrels. Of the three, squirrels will cause the least amount of trouble. That isn't to say that they're harmless. They're just not nearly as troublesome as the other two. Squirrels tend to stay in attic spaces. Rats and mice may explore your entire home, depending on the species. Let's look at four common species we see in Phoenix.
House Mice: These are the worst of all pest rodents in Phoenix. These dark grey rodents love living inside structures and are extremely difficult to drive out.
Deer Mice: These mice are tawny and have a white belly, a coloration that is similar to a deer. If you see these mice in your yard, there is a good chance they'll stay in your yard. When they infest structures, they usually select barns and outbuildings.
Roof Rats: These are black rats. While they are great climbers and get into attic spaces, they aren't likely to limit their activity to your attic. Roof rats, also called common house rats, love living inside houses. Like house mice, roof rats are hard to drive out of a home and survive very well indoors.
Norway Rats: These are brown rats. When you see a Norway rat waddling through your yard, it is possible that it hasn't gotten into your home. Norway rats often create ground burrows outdoors, but they can live indoors and create large populations when given the opportunity.
Pack Rats: These rats share a commonality with roof rats and Norway rats. They are brown, like Norway rats, and are excellent climbers, like roof rats. When pack rats get into homes, they tend to act like squirrels. They prefer attic spaces and secluded storage rooms. Often, they do what deer mice do. They'll infest a shed, barn, or outbuilding.
Whether you have little rodents, large rodents, or large, furry-tailed rodents getting into your home, you should know what they do when they get inside. Let's quickly look at the dangers.
Rodents Can Spread Diseases And Damage Property
How much of a problem a rodent can depend on the rodent. Some rodents never get into homes. While voles and gophers can drive you crazy in your yard, they won't get into your home and cause trouble. Some rodents get inside by accident but don't prefer to be inside. Chipmunks are a good example. While you can find a chipmunk in your home, it isn't likely to stay long and won't grow a population. But, when a rodent gets inside, even for a short time, it can cause trouble. If it can grow a population in your home, it will cause even more trouble. Here are a few things rodents do indoors.
- They leave their waste on surfaces and soil stored items, such as furniture and clothing.
- They leave droplets of urine as they explore. Over time, the scent of urine will be hard to ignore.
- They chew on wires. We don't want to alarm you, but there is a distinct possibility that rodents will sever wires within your walls when they explore your home, even if they stay in attic spaces. Experts believe 20 to 25 percent of structure fires that result from undetermined sources are likely rodent-related.
- Rodents chew holes in building materials, allowing rainwater to get into your home, which can cause moisture damage and mold problems.
- Rodents chew on stored items and can damage valuable keepsakes.
- As rats and mice explore your home, they can contaminate surfaces, dishes, silverware, and packaged foods.
- Rodents carry ticks and fleas, which may carry diseases that impact human health, such as Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, ehrlichiosis, typhus, plague, and more. One field mouse can have as many as a hundred seed ticks on its tiny body.
We could go on, but you get the point. You should never allow rodents, not even one little mouse, to live with you. It just isn't worth it. At the first sign of rodent activity, take steps to get rid of those rodents.
How And Why Rodents Find Their Way Into Our Homes
Rodents are attracted to tight spaces and will often enter homes simply because they see an opportunity. When you take steps to seal tiny holes, gaps, and cracks in your exterior, you significantly deter rodents from getting inside. Once you've dealt with exclusion work, the next step is to consider what to do about getting control of rodents in your home. When Phoenix residents discover evidence of a rodent infestation, they sometimes turn to traps as a solution. Unfortunately, traps often fall short. There are a few reasons why. Let's quickly look at them.
- Mice are curious animals and will check traps out, but they're also clever and agile animals that can outsmart traps or escape the swing of a spring trap.
- Rats are cautious animals that avoid new things. If you place traps down to catch rats, those animals will likely disappoint you.
- The bait used on traps is often incorrect. Mice don't prefer cheese, so it isn't an effective bait. You'll have more success with peanut butter or rice. When using rice, it is critical to apply it with something else to make it more difficult for mice to get it off the latch. Rats will go for cheese but aren't easily controlled with spring traps.
- All rodent control begins with an effective inspection to evaluate potential routes and entry points, conducive conditions, and warning signs of activity. The data collected from an inspection is critical for control. For example, it is important to determine whether you have an infestation of rats or mice because the control measures for each are different. You'll also need to know what species you are dealing with. When residents tackle their own rodent control, they either neglect to do an inspection or don't get the data they need.
- DIY rodent control is often incomplete. While professionals use traps, they are used as a part of a multi-pronged control strategy. On their own, traps are inadequate. You can catch rodents continually and never arrest an infestation. It is essential to seal exterior entry points to prevent new rodents from getting inside and to apply other products and methods as appropriate. For example, rodent bait is commonly used to control rodents, but it is best for exterior rodent problems because bait contains rodenticide, and you don't want rodent extermination to occur inside your walls.
These are only some of the ways DIY rodent control may fail to achieve the results you want. When you discover a rodent problem, we strongly recommend having a licensed professional handle the problem for you. Not only will a professional do the hard work for you, but they'll also apply their training and experience to get the best results.
The Most Effective Rodent Control For Your Home
Are you in Phoenix? Contact ACTION Termite & Pest Control for effective rodent control. Our technicians can help you with all your rodent woes. We provide home pest control and management for mice, roof rats, pack rats, gophers, raccoons, and more! No matter what rodent pest has infiltrated your home or made a mess in your yard, we have the solution.
- We provide trapping services to capture and remove rodents from your home or yard. We'll use snap traps or live traps depending on the rodent pests you're dealing with on your property. Snap traps clamp down on rodents to capture them. Live traps are cages with bait inside. When the animal climbs in, it can't get back out. We'll discuss which method is best for your control needs and discuss your sensitivities to harming animals. We want to find the right solution for you.
- We provide baiting services to reduce the population of exterior rodents, such as pack rats or Norway rats.
- We provide rodent exclusion services that offer long-lasting protection from rodent pests. Our technicians look for all of the tiny entry points rodents use to get inside your home and apply appropriate materials to block those points of entry.
We have over 50 years of experience, so you can expect the highest level of service and professionalism from our team. Navigate to our contact page to learn more about our services or schedule a visit from one of our friendly technicians. We'll direct you toward the services that meet your specific needs and budget.