Eugene Rat Control
Yes, we do have rats in the Eugene and surrounding areas. There are two predominant species, the Norway Rats, Rattus norvegicus, and the Roof Rat R. rattus. Both rats can do a significant amount of structural damage to your home, and both present a potential and serious health threat to you and your family.
The Norway Rat, sometimes referred to as the sewer rat, is a burrowing rodent that often lives under the foundation of homes, and under outbuildings. They do build, among other places, a nest under your nicely stacked firewood.
The Roof Rat is smaller than the Norway rat but is just as present and as much of a problem. This rat is very good at climbing and is at home living above ground in shrubs, trees or in dense foliage. Once they gain entrance into your home, they live in your attic, walls in upper floors or in false ceilings.
In a home or office where the roof rat occurs, the Norway rat might also be present. If you are unsure of the species and need help identifying it, call Merle at Merle’s Pest Control (541.915.7581) or the Lane County Extension Service (541-344-5859). Since these species are different with nesting locations, and areas traveled, the method of control will vary also. Using the right materials on the wrong species in the wrong place will result in ineffective treatment and loss of control.
For the most part rats are nocturnal and seldom seen during the day. Sightings of activity during the day may indicate a rather sizeable problem is developing. Rather than seeing the rat itself, what is most noticeable is the presence of their droppings. You may also hear them in the wall, down in your basement or attic as they scurry along investigating their environment. Another indicator would be your cat brings in a dead rat as a prize for you, disgusting but it does happen quite often. Since they are good climbers, you may notice them moving along on power lines right into your attic. They will also travel along the top of fences. In your garage or other storage areas, they will often build their nest in storage boxes in your garage or outbuildings. Then there are the smudge marks around pipes, along walls, in the attic, and along the rafters. This is another indicator that they are present in your home. Rats will even burrow under the foundation of your home. The worst is you may find a drowned rat in your swimming pool, toilet or even your hot tub. One of the first indicators you will notice is that pungent odor coming from under your kitchen sink, dishwasher or in your garage, or other storage areas.
Rats have very poor eyesight; they depend on highly tuned sense of hearing, smell, taste, and touch to guide them to a food source. They are constantly exploring their environment and learning where obstacles are, and memorizing where everything is, chairs, tables, even your favorite lounger. Therefore, in a short time, with obstacles located and remembered they can quickly travel to a desired source of food, water, and shelter. Any new objects entered into their surroundings they quickly detect and tend to avoid for up to 7 to 10 days. Thus, they often avoid newly placed traps and baits.
Once they establish themselves outside, and are comfortable with their environment, they will begin to move into your home. So if you have a problem with rats, be sure to check your garden, compost, and trash receptacle areas regularly for signs of their building a nest.
It is possible for both Norway and Roof Rats to gain entry into your home at the same time. They will gnaw, climb, and swim through the sewer into your bathroom toilet or a broken drainpipe. It should be noted that Norway rats are excellent swimmers while Roof Rats are excellent climbers.
These two rats, Norway and Roof Rats, are not a compatible species. As it turns out, they are mortal enemies and if they come together, a battle to the death will ensue. However, the Norway Rat is the larger of the two species which means the Roof Rat is destined to lose the battle. In spite of this, it is possible for both rats to exist in the same building simultaneously. The Norway Rat will establish itself in the basement and possibly first floor of a building that has several floors. The Roof Rat will remain in the attic or second floor.
Rats can easily squeeze through a small hole that is ½ inch in diameter, or they can go underneath a door with a similar gap. In addition, a door made of wood is susceptible to them gnawing a gap to allow them access to various areas of your home.
A Norway Rats food source consists of various items, among them nuts, fruits, meats and grains. In its established territory it will generally travel up to 150 feet from their nest. Once a nest is established, with ample food and water nearby, the female will begin to produce litters, as many as 6 per year. She generally can produce more than 20 offspring per year.
Roof Rats diet consists of slugs, snails, nuts and berries. Rarely do they travel more than 300 feet from their nest. The females will have 5 litters per year producing approximately 40 offspring.
Rats contaminate more food than they consume. It’s not just the contamination that is the problem, they will damage your storage containers and sealed packaging materials. Both rat species cause damage to electrical appliances by gnawing on the wires. Then there is the damage they cause to wooden structures such as doors, baseboards and even the insulation in the attic and walls of your home. They will hollow out the insulation to make a nesting area for their young.
It is well known that rats also transmit diseases to humans and other animals. Some of these are murine typhus, leptospirosis, salmonellosis (food poisoning), and ratbite fever. Plague is also a disease that both Roof and Norway rats can carry and infect humans. In the past, this dreaded disease was found in southern Oregon. The following link will provide more information. http://thatoregonlife.com/2015/10/confirmed-case-of-bubonic-plague-in-oregon. This is a situation that you do not need to be worried about, just be aware, it is in Oregon, but fortunately not in the Eugene and surrounding areas.
So now, what can you do to protect your home against Rats?
The first place to start is with sanitation. If you fail here, then there is very limited hope of solving your rat problem. Keeping the kitchen clean and free of clutter and an accumulation of food is an absolute must, no exceptions. Remove any paper or plastic bags stored between the refrigerator and cabinet. For some people this is not a problem at all, unfortunately for others it presents a major challenge. Do not let garbage build up inside your home. Keep all living areas free of clutter, making sure you have easy access to all areas. Keep your pet food and water picked up at night. Make sure all pet food that is stored is in a sealed container. This will greatly reduce their ability to find suitable food. Collect garbage, trash, and garden debris frequently, and make sure all garbage cans have tight-fitting covers.
Outside your home, trim and keep bushes at least 2 feet from the house, remove all tree limbs that hang over and touch the roof. Be sure to thin all dense groundcover, and dense hedges. Doing so will make it more difficult for rats to nest in these areas. And PLEASE CALL TODAY 541.915.7581 for fast results you can depend on.
Eugene Rat Control Company
Keep in mind that rats can gain access to your home through a hole as small as ¼ of an inch. Make sure to replace any broken foundation wire. In addition, repair or seal cracks and openings in building foundations and any openings around pipes, electric wires, and sewer lines. Check for gaps around screens, windows and doors, any one that does not completely seal, replace.
Be aware that Roof Rats will enter your home through access points along the roofline and be sure any problem areas are properly repaired. If you find that roof rats are traveling on overhead utility wires, contact Merle’s Pest Control (541.915.7581) for more information on how to correct this problem.
When food, water, and shelter are available, rat populations can increase and will increase very quickly. Seemingly overnight a seemingly small rat problem will become one that is out of control. Doing your own rodent control you may discover that mechanical traps and even baiting may not be enough to contain, control and stop a rat infestation.
Keep in mind; you should never touch a rat that is dead with your hands. The easiest and safest way to remove a dead rat is to place a plastic bag over your hand pulling the rat into the bag and disposing of both into a sealed outside garbage receptacle. This way you will not come in physical contact with the rat.
There are many products available to you in the market place for rat control. These include glue boards, spring traps, ultrasonic devices, and baits. You are probably already aware that glue boards are messy, and the slightest amount of dust on them will render them ineffective. Spring traps work well, but placement and baiting material can be a problem. Ultrasonic devices are not effective for rat control. At first the rat is frightened by the unusual and unfamiliar sound, but very quickly adapts and will continue with business as usual, contaminating your food and damaging your home.
Interesting, Pepsi or Coke that is freshly opened and poured into a dish will kill a rat. Once they ingest one of these, the carbonated gas begins to build up. Since rats cannot burp, the gas eventually builds up inside to the point where it will suffocate the rat. It only works if the pop is fresh; if it is flat (lost its carbonation) then you have simply provided another food source for the rat. Since the Norway Rat nest in burrows underground, it is possible to drown them by placing a garden hose into the hole and flooding its nesting area.
Eugene Rat Control
There is a lot involved in rat control, in most cases you will need help. I have the experience, technology, the right materials and skills necessary to eliminate your rat problem, and will do so while protecting you, your family, your pets and our environment. Call today for fast results you can see.
Eugene Rat Control
For further information, or to schedule a service call Merle Jackson at Merle’s Pest Control (541.915.7581).