With the temperatures in the Hunter Region starting to drop, we are getting very close to the time of year known in the pest management industry as rodent season. The fact is rats are breeding all year around. They breed just as much in summer as they do in winter. The reason why we call it rodents season is because during these colder months rodents, like us want to be warm. Our homes provide a fantastic place for rodents to live, especially when it’s cold outside.
Why do rats enter homes?
External conditions start to become less attractive for rats. The pictures taken below from a property in Maitland show Norway Rat burrows around and below compost in our customers backyard. An area like this provides Norway Rats with a fantastic food source which is why they have burrowed right at the food source. This is a classic example of why food sources must be made inaccessible when rats are present and to make your property less attractive. If they find a good food source then they’ll nest close by.
What you really don’t want is rats nesting in your home. In the situation above, eventually the outside temperature will get colder and the rats currently nesting in burrows outside may decide to find a suitable nesting place inside your home. Just like humans, rats like to live in warm environments. Rats find their way in a structure through small holes and make their way through the wall cavities and access exploit almost any area inside your home. The roof void, wall cavities and other confined voids in and around your home make excellent nesting areas seeing as though they will travel up to 50mts for food, our homes also make very good homes for rats.
How can I prevent rats?
There are some things that you can do around your home to help make your property less attractive for rodents to live.
- Ensure all of your household garbage is in tightly sealed bins which Rats cannot access. Restrict their access to food as much as possible. Rats are opportunistic feeders, they have preferred food sources but will eat mostly anything. Once they find a good constant food source they will continue to feed the same way until it is removed or something better comes along.
- Alter your building so that Rats cannot gain entry, look for access holes that Rats can use such as where pipes enter buildings, gaps under external doors. Sealing these points and others similar will make it harder for Rats to enter. Using a gutter guard to seal the roof can be helpful also to stop them entering the roof via the gutters. Restrict their access to shelter as much as possible.
- Trim excess trees and shrubs from around the perimeter of structure especially trees that overhang the roof. This will both take away harbourage areas and make accessing the roof a little bit harder for them.
How can I get rid of rats?
When all else fails and control measures need to be implemented. Amalgamated Pest Control will look at all the available options. The two most common methods of control are;
- Trapping: Using traps to physically trap and remove Rats.
- Chemical Control: Includes a wide range of baiting techniques most commonly bait blocks used in Tamper Resistant Rodent Stations, the baits are secured inside and cannot be removed. Also the use of tracking powders, gels and other baits as required.
When we apply bait to control rodents we first complete a thorough inspection then apply bait in Tamper Resistant Rodent Stations (locked bait stations) as required. Trying to keep bait in areas such as roof voids and sub-floors as much as possible. If needed internally or externally in Tamper Resistant Rodent Stations keep the bait inside secure and don’t allow pets and children access to the bait. The bait cannot be removed from the station. We will always come back to assess the placement of the baits to ensure that they are being consumed and are placed in the most effective areas and to replenish if required.
If you would like more information on how to manage rodent problems at your property, call Amalgamated Pest Control Newcastle.