Rodents

What are rodents?

Rodents make up the largest group of mammals. All rodents have continuously growing front incisors. These pests are adaptable and have the potential to successfully live in almost any indoor or outdoor environment. Rodents will take advantage of any food, water, and shelter sources they find, and can become a problem any time of the year. Some examples of common rodents found here in North Carolina include house mice, field mice, and rats.

a rat on a doorstep at a home in farmville north carolina

House mice
House mice have small, slender bodies that grow to between 2 ½ and 3 ¾ of an inch in length. Their tails are about 3 to 4 inches in length. Their tails and large ears are covered in a light layer of velvety fur. Their fur is usually grayish-brown, dark gray, or black in color. Their underbellies are lighter in color than the rest of their body.
 
Field mice
Field mice are gray or tawny brown in color, and their underbellies are covered in white hairs that extend behind their tail. They also have lighter colored or white feet. Field mice have short tails that are about the same length as their bodies. From nose to tail, adult mice grow to between 5 and 8 inches in length. Field mice have large, dark eyes, and thin, prominent ears.
 
Rats
Adults rats are much larger than mice. From their nose to the tip of their tails, rats can grow up to 12 to 16 inches in length. Their fur ranges from light brown to dark brown, and their underbellies are lighter in color. Unlike mice, rats' tails and ears are usually void of hair. Depending on their species, their bodies may have a heavy or light build.

Are rodents dangerous?

Rodents are dangerous. They contaminate food sources and the surfaces of homes with their urine, feces, and saliva. Rodents are responsible for spreading a wide variety of diseases and bacteria to people, including Lymphocytic choriomeningitis (LCM), Hantavirus, dysentery, leptospirosis, and salmonellosis.
 
In addition, rodents create a lot of structural damage. To stop their teeth from overgrowing, they constantly gnaw on objects. Inside homes, they will cause damage to furniture, flooring, drywall, insulation, walls, pictures, books, wallpaper, and more. They can also cause fires and water damage by chewing through pipes, wires, and ducts.

Why do I have a rodent problem?

Properties with gardens, compost piles, pet food, open containers of garbage, outdoor eating areas, bird seed, bird baths, clogged gutters, wild animal feed, pet food, wood piles, dense vegetation, and piles of debris can become a home to mice, rats, and other rodents. Rodents are attracted to properties that offer easy access to food, water and shelter sources. Once living on your property, it is only a matter of time before rodents find their way inside your home while looking for food sources, or if the weather outside becomes unsuitable. They typically enter through spaces in your home's foundation, gaps underneath doors, through holes along your roofline, or inside chimneys.

Where will I find rodents?

Where rodents decide to nest and live depends on their exact species. In general, rodents living outside nest in or around trees, wood piles, tree stumps, debris piles, and dense vegetation. They also nest under decks, porches, foundations, along river banks, and in abandoned bird nests.
 
Rodents that have found their way into homes like to nest in warm, safe, secluded areas. They also like to make sure they place their nests near food sources. Indoor nesting sites include behind walls, in attics or basements, inside crawl spaces, inside storage boxes, behind appliances, in the backs of cabinets or closets, and underneath sinks.

How do I get rid of rodents?

To eliminate destructive rodents, partner with an experienced pest control professional. At Pest & Termite Consultants, we offer the modern services needed to solve your property’s rodent problem. Our qualified professionals provide accurate identification, cost estimates, and perform effective rodent treatments. To learn more about our professional rodent control services and how they can protect your Raleigh-area home from these destructive pests, reach out to us!

How can I prevent rodents in the future?

To discourage rodents from choosing your home to live in, we suggest doing the following:

  • Seal openings found in the foundation and exterior walls of your home.

  • Seal spaces found around utilities entering your home from its exterior, and place covers over vents.

  • Place a cap on your chimney.

  • Trim tree limbs, shrubs and bushes away from the exterior of your home.

  • Remove fallen trees, tree stumps, and other debris from your property.

  • All outdoor trash cans should have tight-fitting lids on them.

  • Place garden areas, wood piles, and compost piles a distance away from the exterior of your home.

 

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