Your first instinct may be to cringe if you see a rat in your backyard. No one wants a rodent that can wreak havoc on the interior and exterior of your home. If rats or other rodents are present in or around your home, you will notice a strong, distinct urine smell and holes and chew marks on many of your belongings. If you have pets, their behavior may change because they see these rodents when you don’t, often at night. During the fall is when you will notice an increase of rats and other rodents. If you find rats and other unwanted guests in your backyard or your home, take these steps to get rid of them and keep them from coming back.
The first step you need to take to get rid of rats is to clean up. Having piles of wood and leaves spread across your yard is the perfect playground for mice. Mice can hide in piles of junk without being detected, which is why it may take a while for you to notice them. Make sure you keep up with regular yard maintenance such as cutting the grass, pulling weeds, and getting rid of any foliage that provides a cozy hiding spot for these pests. If you compost, these materials need to be kept as far away from your home as possible in a sealed, plastic container.
Getting Rid of the Food Source
Aside from wanting a warm place to protect them from the outside elements during the winter, rats are also on the hunt for food. Leaving food out is an invitation for rats to enter your home. Food should not be left out on the inside or outside of your home. Tightly seal trash bags and don’t overflow the trash in the bins. Put your trash out on the day of trash pick up. Leaving trash in the containers for days at a time attracts mice. They will tear through the garbage bags and leave a trail of trash behind them for you to clean up. Purchase trash cans that have locking lids. Leaving food out inside your home is just as bad as allowing trash to sit in the bins. Mice are not picky. They will eat almost any type of food you leave out. Other types of food, such as bird food and pet food, attract mice.
Rats are smart, but they’re not invincible. You can create a trapping mechanism of your own, purchase a few rat traps from the store, use pesticides, or better yet, hire Mariners Pest Control. Rats reproduce quickly, and your home may require a thorough inspection to determine where the rats are nesting and how many of them there are.
One of the worst things you can do is wait until the last minute to address a rat problem. Rats are not as fluffy and friendly as mice can be. Rats can be aggressive, especially if they have babies nearby. Rodents also carry disease.