EcoPest Pest Control Services Serving North Alabama AreasThe best solution to a pest control problem is preventing it in the first place. So how does one go about rat and mice prevention and elimination? Cooler weather brings a decrease in pest problems such as mosquitos, ants, spiders and wasps. However, cooler weather will often bring a different kind of visitor to your home and office. We are of course talking about rats and mice.
Rats and mice find human structures to be the ideal over wintering spot. We like to be warm and so do the rodents. There are stockpiles of food just waiting for a mouse or rat to indulge. With water and shelter – your home presents itself as the perfect winter home for rats and mice. Let’s stop them in their tracks!
The Rat and Mice Prevention Process
Inspect for Openings
First you need to take a thorough look at your property. Look for any opening that is the size of a pencil or larger. The weak spots commonly found in a home are near central heat and air units, and anywhere pipes enter the structure. Look under sinks and cabinets. Check your vents around your home, are the screens still good? Does the crawl space access door seal well? The best solution to rat and mice prevention is denying them entry to begin with.
Rat and Mice Exclusion
Exclusion is the process of sealing off potential entry points for rats and mice. You will want to use a variety of materials to accomplish this. Steel wool or “stuff-it” should be placed in holes rats or mice can enter and then either silicone in place or seal them with insulating foam. Another alternative is concrete or mortar patches. The steel wool keeps them from chewing their way in or out.
Cleaning Up Droppings and Nesting
On a side note, if you find signs of rodent activity during your inspection such as droppings or nesting, we advise that you use caution during the cleaning process. Rodent droppings can carry disease. Deer Mice are carriers for hantavirus, (A serious respiratory illness) in Alabama. If you encounter large numbers of droppings be sure to wear a dust mask and gloves.
Rat and Mice EliminationIf you found evidence of rodent activity – the best solution is to use a quick killing, 2nd generation rodenticide. These are relatively safe to use, but one should still exercise caution regarding the exposure of children and pets. Keep in mind that rodents like to hoard – so it is better to use a poison block over a pellet. Pellets can be relocated by the target pest and placed within reach of non-targets like children or pets. The other option is to use traps – whether mechanical, like mouse traps or multi-catch live traps. Glue boards are also another popular choice – once the rodent is captured simply toss it in the trash and move on.
Pro-tip: Bait your mechanical traps from the bottom of the actuator instead of the top. This makes the rodent have to work harder to get the bait and increases the chance of capture.
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