It is almost fall and while most people think of this time of year as a time to prepare to go back to school, we think about it as a time to prepare for rodents to enter into structures.
Rodent control is important in south Florida. Due to the numerous canals in the area, high populations of rats are considered normal. As the temperatures cool down, the rats begin looking for a warm place to go to raise their young.
This past summer, we and other pest management companies in the area reported being unusually busy with rodent work. An extremely high summer population means that we can expect a lot more rodents trying to sneak inside this fall. The best method to control rodents is to prevent them from entering into a structure in the first place.
Rodents are mammals of the order Rodentia, characterized by a single pair of continuously growing teeth in each of the upper and lower jaws. Because their teeth grow 3” per year, they are constantly chewing on and damaging things to keep their teeth short and sharp. They are known for going into structures and chewing on the wires. In fact, it has been estimated that rodents have caused 20% of undetermined fires in the United States each year. They also chew holes in air conditioning ducts, water pipes, and other important things. The University of Florida states that many times rats bite sleeping children while trying to get bits of food on the child that were not washed off before going to bed.
When rodents gain entry into a structure, they contaminate any areas in which they travel. They urinate wherever they walk and are constantly leaving fecal droppings and hair wherever they go. Because they do not bathe, you will see greasy, black marks on the walls, floors and entry points. They carry vermin like fleas and mites into the structure. Not only that, they spread diseases like bubonic plague, murine typhus, spirochetal jaundice, Leptospirosis, rabies, ratbite fever, and bacterial food poisoning.
Rodents can enter through any unsealed area. The most common areas in which they gain entry are under the garage door, especially if the seal is not in good condition and from the roof through vent stacks, unsealed holes in roof soffits and tears in roof vents. Crawl spaces that are not completely sealed make structures easily accessible. Mice only need a hole the size of a dime to get in and a rat a hold the size of a quarter.
It is common to see rats outside in the yard in south Florida. According to the University of Florida, if you see them during the day it indicates a high population. You can make your yard less attractive to rats by keeping your grass trimmed and mowed and keeping stored items out of your yard. To keep rodents off your roof, keep trees trimmed at least 4 feet away from the roofline. We also recommend having rodent bait boxes installed around the outside of your home. This will help keep the population around the outside under control.
Because of the high population of rats in the area and the severity of the damage that rodents can do, it is not an overstatement to say that every structure in South Florida should procure a preventative Rodent Exclusion Service with annual Rodent Inspections. Keep in mind that a reputable company will always offer a guarantee.
Call Hometown Pest Control today for a free rodent inspection and quote! 866-278-8250
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