Tag Archives: rat damage

WHERE DID THESE RATS COME FROM AND WHY MY HOUSE?

Rats are everywhere!  That is, everywhere humans are.

Rats can berats-leaving-sinking-ship-1611324_960_720-2 traced first, from Asia where they then spread throughout Europe along trade routes.  Then they were brought to the Americas by ships transporting people and supplies, to the new world.

In California, two species of non-native rats are primary pests in urban  and suburban communities.                                                                     roof-ratThe ROOF RAT (aka the black rat, tree rat) will live indoors, in attics and upper levels of structures and outdoors in trees, dense vegetation and tall hedges.  They love palm trees, with their dense layers of fronds.   They are known for their climbing skills and have even been seen tightrope walking between telephone poles.  The NORWAY RAT (aka, the norway-ratsewer rat, brown rat) is larger and heavier than his cousin the roof rat, therefore he stays close to the ground, burrowing near buildings, under woodpiles and in garden landscapes.  He is also famous for traveling in sewers, and occupying the  lower levels of structures. These rats are more of a problem in industrial zones and  in densely populated, inner-city or downtown areas.

Rats live very well with humans and most of the time, they go unnoticed, until they start to overpopulate, then,  trat-in-kitchen-on-platehey are everywhere.

Like flies, they live especially well on our garbage. And we produce a lot of garbage.

Rats live to forage, mate and reproduce. A female rat can breed as many as 500 times with different mates throughout their lifetime. baby-rats-by-alexey-krasavinOne female rat can be ancestor to a 1000 rats, over an 18 month period.  Rats give birth to litters of pups (baby rats)  consisting most often, of 5 to 7 individuals.   By the age of three months, they are babies no longer and are ready to reproduce. Rats typically live around two or three years.

Female rats choose accessible attics as nurseries for their young because attics provide safety from predators, including male rats that will feed on  newborns. They  leave only to scavenge food and most always at night.  Male rats will stay where food and water are abundant forgoing the trouble inherent in climbing to an attic and the fight that would surely result if they were to encounter a female.  Male rats are extremely territorial and will fight to protect their domain.

Here are the three most asked questions about rats:

  1. How can I tell if I have a rat problem?

Outside:

  • The patter of running feet on the roof.
  • Droppings along runways, by pet food and water bowls, behind air conditioning equipment and around firewood storage areas.
  • Gnaw marks on wood,  pipes or wiring (including vehicle wiring).
  • Fallen and gnawed fruit , empty snail shells, torn garbage bags, a dead rat in the pool or nesting material in BBQ’s or storage sheds.

Inside:

  • Disturbed insulation in the attic , damage to ductwork or gnawed wallboard.
  • Lines of droppings and puddles of urine along floors and in the attic.
  • Food packages/containers that have been chewed or gnawed.

Fact! Rats are nocturnal so if you see one rat outside in the daytime, you have hundreds lurking close by in the landscape!

2. Why do I have rats? Rats are always looking for easily accessible food options and safe, warm shelter in which to raise their young.  Man-made structures are chosen as harborage areas because they provide all the resources that invading rats actively seek out.  Rats are well-equipped to adapt to most environments, that being said, they can invade structures through any crack or crevice large enough to squeeze through.

rat-in-the-trashOpen garbage cans and pet food bowls left outside make the perfect food sources for those rats looking for an easy meal. Unkept yards and unrepaired structures provide them safe harborage. Mowing tall grasses, pruning dense foliage and repairing holes in walls will go a long way to protect your property from rats.   Once rats have been drawn to your property, they’ll continue to forage around the perimeter ultimately finding a way inside your home.

3. How do I get rid of them?  Rats must be controlled outside in the landscape to stop interior invasions. Your most effective control option is to call a pest professional Knowing where rats are, how they got there and what they were looking for is the job of a rat control specialist. Corkys Pest Control has perfected the science of Rat Control, here in Southern California, and our customers are loving it!  Call 1-800-901-1102 or Schedule a Service On Line.

it-works-no-more-rats-woman-4676131_640                                Don’t Wait! Get rid of rats, today!

Is Your Personal Vehicle a Traveling Pest Hotel ?

Vehicles, cars, camper-vans, buses and trucks, provide many pests with a warm dry environment that often contains food. Vehicles can also provide these pests with transport, spreading the pests to wherever the vehicle travels.

Pests such as ants, spiders, fleas, roaches and rodents (rats and mice) can infest vehicles in the same way they infest homes.

Cavities in vehicles can provide warm dry places for ants to build nests and they will often find food dropped in the vehicle.

spider-web-on-carSpiders find the gaps around wing mirrors and door jams the perfect places to hide and build webs around mirrors and other parts on the vehicle.Rat yelling

Rodents will nest in cars left parked for long periods and may do significant damage to vehicle wiring and upholstery (not to mention the stink when they die in the vehicle).

Another pesky creature that can invade vehicles is the dreaded Bed Bug.

Bed bugs inbed-bug-engorgedvade cars and other forms of transportation.  They are hitchhikers extraordinaire! These many legged creatures sneak into vehicles via clothing, purses, boxes and cartons, luggage and even books and stuffed animals. They love clutter and choose living near a convenient host,You!

Other insects and even small animals can infest vehicles and are usually attracted because of something stored in the vehicle.

Here are a few tips for keep invading pests out of your vehicles.

  • Keep it Clean! –washing-carBe sure to keep your vehicle clean and remove clutter on a regular basis. This is the best way to deter pests from making themselves at home. Clean the outside too. Don’t forget to wash the undercarriage, wheel wells and under the hood. Your wheels are a critters bridge from the road into the vehicle.
  • Use a power vacuum – Make sure to keep your carpets and mats super clean! If you don’t have a good strong vacuum, use the pay-per-use vacuums at a gas station or car wash.
  • Shampoo –Shampoo or steam clean carpets and other fabrics.
  • Natural repellents – Making a solution of vinegar and lemon or vanilla is a great way to keep bugs and spiders away.  Just wipe surfaces with a 50/50 solution. There are other herbs that also turn away unwanted visitors, such as eucalyptus. Always test the surface to be treated first to make sure the solution doesn’t do any harm.
  • Insecticide – Always follow the label instructions and employ recommended safety measures. Once the vehicle is all clean, spray a little under each floor mat; just spraying-cockroachenough to keep insects away but not to overpower you with its smell or fumes. If you keep your car outside, spray around the perimeter of your vehicle.

If you know or suspect you have an infestation on your hands, be aware that a DIY approach will not always provide a successful solution. Professional pest exterminators should be consulted to provide accurate identification, and proper and successful control methods.

Rats and Mice, Fall’s Most Unwanted.

Fall (and continuing through winter) is the time of year that nearly all of the rat infestations occur, according to a survey from the NPMA (National Pest Managemroof-ratent Association).

 

With daytime and overnight temperatures falling, animals go into overwintering mode and for them this means leaving the landscape for warmer places which can provide food and water and a safer environment in which to have and raise their young. Your home is at the top of their list!

Rats (and mice) are our most frequent unwanted visitors, this time of year.mouse-brown

Besides being disgusting, noisy and destructive, rats and mice can contaminate food, spread diseases, bring on allergies and even invite their friends; fleas, ticks and lice into your home.  Rats, especially, have been known to damage property by chewing through drywall, insulation, and electrical wiring (including vehicle wiring).  So, if you park your car outside, don’t forget to check under the hood frequently.

Prevent rats and mice from making your house their home by:

  • Removing yard debris and trash. Always look for places you think rats might like to live such as wood- piles and thick ground covers. Take time to thin out the vegetation and move firewood away from the home. Frequently restacking the wood will also discourage rodents from the area.
  • Keeping trash cans tightly closed. rat-in-trash-bag-2
  • Storing pet food or bird seed in metal cans with secure lids.
  • Picking up fallen fruit. (Don’t feed the rats!)
  • Bringing in pet bowls and bird feeders at night when rodents are the most active.
  • Keeping your home in good repair. Check for openings where rodents can get in. Remember that a mouse can squeeze through a hole as small as a dime, and rats can enter through quarter-sized holes. Covering the openings with metal, concrete or mesh wool or copper mesh wool will stop them from getting in.

Rats and mice are sneaky, determined  creatures, so if they’ve gotten past your best defenses, it’s time to call in the professionals.   

rat-at-dentist-1_k2puy3y6fb6ohq-5csefwhttps://youtu.be/km2Vnk4cE70

Fun Fact:

Rats and mice have a need to gnaw. 

Rats and mice gnaw to take care of their teeth.  Their front teeth constantly grow and without gnawing and chewing to reduce the size of their choppers, the teeth would grow right out of their mouths until they would be unable to eat therefore starving to death or the bottom incisors would poke through the roof of the mouth stabbing into the brain. Not a good way to go!

It’s Rodent “Beware-ness” week: “Batten Down the Hatches”!

Fall is a time of change.  The weather is cooling, leaves are falling, plants and animals are going into overwintering mode and for animals this means heading out of the landscape for safer, warmer places, like inside your home, inside your car or inside your BBQ (not to mention inside pool equipment cabinets).

 

The most frequent unwanted visitors, this time of year, are Mice and Rats.mice-on-cornRat yelling

 

Besides being disgusting, noisy and destructive, rats and mice can contaminate food, spread diseases, bring on allergies and even invite their friends; fleas, ticks and lice into your home.  Rats, especially, have been known to greatly damage property by chewing through drywall, insulation, and electrical wiring (including vehicle wiring).  If you park your car outside, don’t forget to check under the hood frequently.

Prevent rats and mice from making your house their home by:

  • Removing yard debris and trash. Always look for places you think rats might like to live such as wood piles and thick ground covers. Take time to thin out the vegetation and move firewood away from the home. Frequently restacking the wood will also discourage rodents from the area.
  • Keeping trash cans tightly closed. rat-in-trach
  • Storing pet food or bird seed in metal cans with secure lids.
  • Picking up fallen fruit. (Don’t feed the rats!)
  • Bringing in pet bowls and bird feeders at night when rodents are the most active.
  • Keeping your home in good repair. Check for openings where rodents can get in. Remember that a mouse can squeeze through a hole as rat_pipesmall as a dime, and rats can enter through quarter-sized holes. Covering the openings with metal, concrete or mesh wool or copper mesh wool will stop them from getting in.

Rats and mice are sneaky, determined  creatures, so if they’ve gotten past your best defensive line, it’s time to call in the professionals.  

Fun Fact:

Rats and mice have a need to gnaw. rat-at-dentist-1_k2puy3y6fb6ohq-5csefw

They’re not looking to add wiring or building materials to their diet, they are doing what they need to do to promote good dental health.  Yes, rats gnaw to take care of their teeth.  Their front teeth constantly grow and without gnawing and chewing to reduce the size of their choppers, the teeth would grow right out of their mouths until they would be unable to eat therefore starving to death or the bottom incisors would poke through the roof of the mouth stabbing into the brain. Not a good way to go.