Rat a Tat a Fooey

https://www.cdc.gov/rodents/ The Center for Disease and Control states that “worldwide rats and mice spread over 35 diseases that will cause human infection.  These diseases can be spread to humans directly, through handling of rodents, through contact with rodent feces, urine, or saliva, or through rodent bites.  Disease carried by rodents can also be spread to humans directly through ticks, mites, and fleas that have fed on an infected rodent.”

Last week Central Texas experienced a cold snap.  That cold snap made us all shiver and seek the safety of our warm and comfortable homes.  WELL, our cozy little abodes are an excellent home for other mammals!  Rats and Mice Oh My!

damaged-electric-wiring-from-mice

There were approximately 270,000 1 and 2 family homes destroyed by fire in 2015 with 6% of those attributed by rodent chewing wires. WOW!!!

 

Most frequently asked question from our customers: What is the difference between the two rodents?

The short answer is:

SIZE – The average Rat is 9″-11″ with a 7″-9″ tail or a whopping 20 inches!

SIZE – The average mouse is 3″-4″ with a 3″-4″ tail or 8 inches

EARS – when in doubt look for the ear size.  Large Victrola ears are mice and small cauliflower ears are rats.

rat-a-tat-a-fooey

An excellent example – the signs of a rodent in an attic space!

What can be done to protect yourself from infestation and potential sicknesses associated with these unwanted rodents.  Over the next few weeks I will discuss various ways to prevent unwanted rodents from living on your property and how to treat the home to prevent ticks, mites, and fleas from also finding their way into your living quarters.

STEP 1 – Sealing off the property.  A mouse only needs a nickle size hole to enter and a rat only needs a half dollar size hole.

nickle  quarter  half-dollar

Caulking, mason mix, expanding foam, wire mesh, siding repairs, flashing, and other materials are necessary to fill in gaps where rodents can enter into the home.  For raised peer and beam homes there is an additional challenge.

Start with walking the perimeter of the home and clear any brush tree limbs and leaf debris away from the home.  Rats and Mice are cautious and like the cover given by natural environments that allow their movement into the home without detection.  It is our job to stop these natural gateways and break the migration patterns.

Next identify potential gaps that may allow rodents to enter into the home.  depending on the  material your local hardware store can recommend the necessary filler to close off the access point.

Common rodent entry

 

Hope you found the information helpful and please Stop by Zinger Hardware and enjoy a bag of fresh popped popcorn on us and wander the store on this potentially rainy day!  4001 N Lamar Blvd Austin Texas 78756.

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