Have you ever heard a gentle scritch-scratching during the night along your rooftop? Maybe a random thud or three in your attic? That’s probably a common Roof Rat you’re hearing. These prolific climbing rodents are nocturnally active and love scaling walls and rooftops. They get their name from their tendency to be found in the upper parts of buildings. If you’ve seen or a roof rat (either alive or dead), there’s probably a lot more that you’re not seeing. With cooler weather, chances are they’ve invaded your home and built themselves a cozy nest.
Roof Rat Identification
Roof rats are typically brown or black, have smooth fur, and a long tail, typical of rodents. Their large eyes and ears help them to evade predators during nightly excursions.
Roof rats can live up to a year. During their lifetime, females can produce between 24-48 offspring. This means they are prolific breeders as well. A mated pair can turn into an established nest in a very short time.
They are also primarily nocturnal, spending nights foraging for food for their colony. Once they find a food source, they’ll return to that spot over and over until it’s no longer useful to them. Just like Field Mice, roof rats leave behind a trail of droppings between their nest and food.
Roof Rat Health Hazards
Roof rats hold the unfortunate distinction of being the original carriers of the bubonic plague. Today, you’re unlikely to run across that disease in Roseville, CA. You’re more likely to be exposed to murine typhus, leptospirosis, salmonellosis (food poisoning), or rat-bite fever. The fleas they carry transmit diseases as well. Roof rats can transmit a number of diseases to domestic animals.
Additional to the diseases they can spread, roof rats can inflict damage to your home and yard. They will tear up insulation for their nests, and have the nasty habit of gnawing on electrical wire. Do you have a citrus tree or two in your yard? Roof rats eat citrus fruits, both rind and fruit, and even occasionally the bark.
Roof Rat Pest Control
1. Just like with field mice, remove all sources of food: Place paper-bagged foods and pet foods into glass or plastic containers. Make sure the containers have tight-sealing lids. Don’t leave food out anywhere!
2. To proof against roof rats, pay close attention to the roof line for entry points. Eliminate plants growing on buildings, lattices, and overhanging tree limbs that can serve as a pathway.
3. Seal all openings that are greater than ½ inch in diameter. It’s best to use sturdier patches, such as concrete mortar, steel wool, or metal flashing to prevent roof rats chewing a new hole through your patch.
4. Contact Pro Active Pest Control for the best roof rat pest control. As a professional pest control company, we have the tools, knowledge, and experience to effectively solve roof rat pest problems.
Roof rat pest problems are a year-round occurrence. Be proactive about dealing with your pest problems. Contact Pro Active Pest Control to take care of existing pests, establish an effective pest barrier around your home, and maintain it through regular treatments. We provide Roseville pest control, El Dorado Hills pest control, Lincoln pest control, Rancho Cordova pest control, as well as provide pest control throughout the Greater Sacramento area. Contact Pro Active Pest Control for a free consultation and let us show you how we can help protect your home or business from winter pest problems.