What is a rodent?
Rodents are mammals that are characterized by their skulls and their continuously growing teeth that they use to chew and gnaw at wood, break open nuts and seeds, and defend themselves against predators. Some rodents include mice, rats, gophers, hamsters, squirrels, gerbils, chipmunks, and guinea pigs.
The most common rodents that live amongst the human population are mice, rats, and squirrels. These rodents are particularly adept to living amongst us because of their ability to gnaw through wood and walls, and to consume a wide range of miscellaneous foods. They also have high reproductive rates and can find shelter in tight spaces making it hard for their primary predators cats, dogs, and foxes to catch them.
Why are rodents harmful?
Rodents can be particularly hazerdous to humans because of the number of diseases that they carry that are potentially deadly and can cause serious injury and health issues. Diseases, bacteria, and ailments such as Listeria, Salmonella, Hantavirus, and Rat-Bite fever are just a few of the nasty things that rodents carry that can harm humans.
Rodents can also cause serious allergic reactions to occur in humans. Mice urine and dropping account for a large number of allergies and it has been discovered that trace amounts of mouse allergen have been detected in over 80% of homes. These allergens have also been known to cause Asthma in children.
Besides these harmful diseases and allergies that rodents can cause, they also can take quite a toll on a home. Their sharp teeth are capable of chewing through all sorts of components such as insulation, wood, drywall, card board, and even electrical wiring. Many rodents chew through electrical components in walls and these exposed wires cause house fires.
What can be done to prevent rodents?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offer up three different methods to help prevent the infestation of rodents on your property.
- The first thing that can be done to prevent rodents is to seal up any holes inside or outside of your home to prevent easy access and entry of rodents. Keep in mind that rodents can squeeze into very small spaces and that you must fill every crack and crevice to prevent their entry.
- A very old fashion method, but a great way to reduce rodent population is to set traps. Snap traps are cheap and easy, but still an effective way to reduce rodents and prevent against an infestation.
- Cleaning up rodent food sources and nesting sites is vital for proper prevention. Making sure to keep food in thick plastic or sealed jars and cans, not leaving out dog food overnight, cleaning up spills, keeping grill areas clean, and many other preventative measures can eliminate easy food sources for rodents. Also, making sure your property is devoid of potential nesting areas such as piles of wood, hay, old cars and tires, garbage cans, ect. can help reduce the risk of infestation.
How to take care of rodent infestation?
If you have a mice infestation it’s important to apply every form of mouse control technique available such as sealing up holes and cracks, cleaning and disinfecting, eliminating potential food sources, setting traps, and clearing away potential nesting sites. However prevention techniques are usually not enough when you already have a infestation.
Mice breed incredibly fast and if you notice a serious issue brewing it is extremely vital to contact a professional pest control company to eliminate the problem completely.
Rats are a bit more of a serious issue because of the strength of their jaws and ability to cause serious harm to the structure and integrity of your home. Female rats are also capable of having six litters a year and this helps their population to increase very rapidly causing horrible infestations.
If you notice that after you have applied prevention methods that you still are having an issue with rats, it’s likely you have an infestation and it’s therefore highly recommended that you immediately contact a reliable pest control company.