Rodents are one of the commonest pest problems reported by homeowners. There are many rodents causing problems in homes all over the country. Homeowners stand a chance of experiencing rodent problems at any time, irrespective of the season of the year. During the winter season, rodents find their way into at least 21 million homes in the United States. This migratory movement is in the quest for warmth, shelter, and food. A survey conducted by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) revealed that as many as one-third of Americans deal with rodents causing problems in homes.
Harm from Rodents
The invading rodents are of different species and may be particular to an area or season, especially during the winter and fall seasons. Added to this, rodent problems are usually particular to areas of the home like the kitchen, basement, and living room where there is warmth during the cold winter weather and food.
Having to deal with a mouse or rat problem at home or business can be mentally and physically stressful. In addition to this, you also face the health risks associated with pest problems on your property. Due to their nature, rodents are known to be carriers of a wide range of microorganisms and pathogens which can be transferred to humans and with dire consequences. In addition to this, rodents may also trigger allergic reactions in most people and may also expose humans to disease-causing parasites like fleas, ticks, and lice.
Other Risks & How to Treat Them
Away from the health risks, rodents are also known to have a negative effect on the property. Their actions can damage drywall and they can also chew on furniture, electrical wires, and others. Allowing rodents to linger in your home may cause other problems that you never imagined, for instance, a mouse breeds quickly and can produce as many as 12 offspring every three weeks which makes the rate of infestation higher.
All of these problems and more are a part of the threats posed by rodents. These are enough reasons to raise awareness against them and also to hire a pest control professional to handle your pest control needs.
Common Types Of Rodents Causing Problems In Homes
To help you to better understand the problem and its potential solution, below are some of the common rodent problems you may face.
Deer mice are typically half brown and half white with a bicolored tail. They are found across the United States. These mice are most prevalent in the rural areas where structures like tree hollows, old fence posts, and long piles of wood exist. Although homeowners may come in contact with this type of mice from time to time, especially during the winter season when they are in search of food and shelter, they are rarely a problem in a residential setting. During the off-seasons, Deer mice can often be found in areas like cabins, sheds, and barns.
Deer mice pose health-risks to humans. They are known to be the most common carrier of hantavirus. A hantavirus is a group of diseases spread by rodents and causing ailments that affect the blood, kidney, and respiratory system. The problem can sometimes be fatal in humans. It is mostly transmitted through inhalation of dust particles that have come in contact with the rodent’s bodily fluid, whether saliva, urine, or feces.
To protect yourself from this rodent, be sure to store pet food away from easy reach. Also, avoid keeping bird seed or pet food in areas like storage sheds, garages, and other areas close to your home.
They are the commonest rodent species found across the United States. The House mice live in a dark and secluded area in the home or inside structures. Being excellent climbers, it is not uncommon to find them at heights. This rodent has the potential of causing a significant amount of damage to the home and structures contained in it. Some of the common areas affected include wiring, insulation, and drywall. When attacking wires, they can cause electrical sparks which may lead to fire problems in the home. They also contaminate stored food and spread salmonella and other diseases.
To protect your home from this rodent, you should be proactive about cleaning and clearing clutters to get rid of dark and secluded spaces where they hide in. Also, get rid of boxes placed on the flood and keep food properly sealed and stored. To prevent food contamination, you should invest in rodent-proof containers.
House mice have fur covering which makes it possible for them to slip through small holes the size of a dime.
Like every other common rodent, Norway rats are common across the United States. These rats are nocturnal which means that they spend a significant part of the day resting and operate at night. They are known to burrow into piles of garbage and are found in the dirtiest of environments. These rats can gain entry into the home through various openings and commonly nest in the crawl spaces, basements, and other places with relatively low human interaction.
Norway rats are perhaps the most destructive of the lot. They are known for their constant gnawing on items and appliances. They are also a carrier of common health problems like jaundice, plague, cowpox virus, rat-bite fever, and more. They can also bring mites and fleas into the home. Preventing or dealing with this problem will require you to be attentive to common signs like droppings, urine, gnaw marks, damaged food, and grease rub marks on the walls of frequented areas. Detecting and dealing with this problem as fast as possible is essential to prevent an infestation.
Though they are said to be originally from Southeast Asia, the Roof rats have spread across the U.S. coastal states. These rats live in colonies and are commonly found on trees or tall structures. They are vectors of bubonic plague and can also spread diseases like jaundice, trichinosis, and typhus. Roof rats can be prevented by taking prompt action to clean fallen fruits from fruit trees surrounding your home. In addition, carefully manage and store your garbage as this could also attract them.
If you are dealing with any of the common household rodents mentioned above, hire a pest control professional to get the desired result.