If you have a rat problem, one of the most important steps to take is to seal your house, so they can’t get inside. Otherwise, you’ll have to deal with rat traps or poison to remove them once they settle into your attic or other part of your home. Since rats carry diseases and give your home a bad smell, you don’t want them to get inside if at all possible. Here are some things you can do.
Find Their Paths
Rats are habitual creatures, and they follow the same paths most of the time. That causes them to leave trails behind that you can follow right to their nest and to where they enter your home. You may see a small trampled path in the weeds that leads to nesting places underground or in a brush pile. If you know where they live and sleep, you can wipe out the colony, or at least disrupt it, so the rats move off your property.
Rat trails on your house are usually easier to spot. You may see footprints or tail marks in the dust. There will be rat droppings and urine stains. If the rats use the same trail for long enough, greasy dark stains will develop on hard surfaces, such as drainpipes, that are a sure sign of a rodent infestation.
If you need help finding the rodent path, you can buy a UV light flashlight to shine along the roof and foundation of your home. This causes the urine to glow, so you can tell where rats have been. You can even buy cotton balls coated with fluorescent powder to leave around for the rats to find. When a rat makes contact with one, the rat will be coated in particles that glow under a UV light. This will help you find the nest and trails much easier.
Seal Your Home
Once you know where the rats get inside your home, you can begin sealing it. You may need to fill active holes with steel wool, or cover them with metal to keep the rats from gnawing them open again. Rats are very smart animals, and if they know food and shelter are inside your home, they will hunt for another way to get inside.
Therefore, you’ll need to go around your home and seal every possible entry point you can find. Look around window frames, examine your roof, and check for cracks in your foundation. Pay special attention to areas where pipes exit your home. Fill holes with caulk or something that is difficult for rodents to chew through. A simple screen probably isn’t enough to keep out a determined rat.
Once your home is sealed, you should visually inspect its perimeter every few weeks for signs of rodent tracks and trails. The rats may try to gnaw back inside, especially if it is cold outdoors and food supplies are low. It may be necessary to call an exterminator for help getting the rodents out of your yard. Although it’s frustrating to battle a rodent infestation, it’s much better to do it on the outside of your home rather than the inside. If rats move into your house, they can do a lot of damage before you get the problem under control.
For more information, contact Eagle Pest Eliminators or a similar company.