LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION : RAT CONTROL

Three main rodents invade our structures the Norway rat, Roof Rat and the House mouse.  There is very large line of professional traps, glue boards, baits and bait stations for all your rat control needs.  Knowing which product and their location is the harder part of rat control.

The Norway rat has an average body weight of 10 to 17 oz, often well over a pound!!; The body is heavy and broad, usually between 7″ and 10″; The head is long and has a blunt nose; The Norway rat tail is usually about 6 inches long, and is never as long as the body; The ears are typically small and held tightly against the body; The color is brown to black on the back and sides, and gray to yellow on the belly. The Norway rat prefers to feed on meats, fish, flour, fruits, vegetables. The Norway rat usually nests in basements & lower portions of buildings. They quite often burrow in the soil and have extensive runs. The Norway rat is active primarily at night; They are fair climbers but good swimmers; Rats are suspicious of changes in the environment or new foods, for this reason it may take a couple of days for traps or poison baits to take. Rats are nocturnal, with their peak activity at dusk or before dawn. When the population is large or they are disturbed or hungry, you can see activity during the day.

The Roof Rat average body weight is 6 to 12 oz, and has a long slender body, usually 6 to 8 inches in length; the nose is pointed compared to the Norway Rat and the ears are large and very prominently displayed; The tail is long and uniform in color, and can usually reach the tip of its nose; The color is black on the back and grayish white on the underside. Roof Rats usually enter and nest in upper portions of buildings. They can nest outside in trees, especially in palms and ivy; They rarely burrow and are excellent climbers; Very active at night; Rats are suspicious of changes in the environment or new foods, for this reason it may take a couple of days for traps or poison baits to take. Rats are nocturnal, with their peak activity at dusk or before dawn. When the population is large or they are disturbed or hungry, you can see activity during the day.

Where you place your bait station will determine how successful you will be with your rat control program.  Knowing where the stations should be placed in critical and knowing where they are nesting, travelling, and feeding.  Placing your stations based on rat behavior will guarantee your success.

You will want to place rat stations in their runways where they are more likely to come in contact with them, for Norway rats this is usually on the ground and for roof rats this usually means up high, with mice it means locating the stations high, low and in between.  Rats will usually give you an indication of where to place the stations, because of their drop marks, rub marks, gnawing, urine stains, trails through insulation and signs of feeding.

Do not let your stations run out of rodenticide:  Once you get them to start feeding inside the station don’t have missed opportunities because it is empty.

When you see that 2 or more stations are showing heavy signs of feeding in a close area, add another station in between to make sure the rats are not nesting or getting into the structure between the stations.

Locate the stations where you will not likely have any interference from no targeted animals such as raccoons, dogs and squirrels.

Rats have an instinctual fear of new things, a rat may pass the same trail 2 times a day for weeks and he is familiar with everything in that path.  When you place a new item, say the rodent bait station, in its path, the rat will go around it for a few days until he realizes that this item will not harm him.  You can bait the stations with non toxic food, such as peanut butter, fish or lived flavored cat food, apple slices, or candy for a few days.

Space outdoor placements closely to intercept rats from coming from likely harborages such as a rat infested building next door.    If your rodent pressure is light then you can space them a little further apart.  Be careful not to contaminate your rodent bait with bad tasting chemicals that you may have on your hands, rats have a very good sense of taste and will not be likely to ingest the rodent bait.

Monica Bird (922 Posts)

Monica’s compassion for her customer's struggles with pest control issues and passion for pest control stems from over 10 years in the industry. With a master’s degree in entomology, she uses her knowledge and experience in chemistry, insects and pests to educate her customers.


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