Rodents are two of the most common pest problems. Rats and mice are alike in the fact that they both have incisors that never stop growing. They also both can carry and spread diseases. However, rats and mice are different in many ways as well. Because they both can be a danger for you and your family, it’s important to learn how to identify rats and mice. At Western Exterminator of Las Vegas, our team wants to ensure our customers are aware of the pest threats they may face. Knowing the differences between mouse and rat problems can help. Our experts have compiled all the information you need to know—read on to learn more.
7 Facts About Rats
Rats are typically bigger and occasionally more aggressive than mice. Here’s what else you need to know:
Rats have thicker bodies and tails that are shorter than the length of their body.
They possess small hairy ears and larger feet.
They weigh anywhere from 150 to 300 grams.
Rat droppings are banana-shaped and much bigger than mice droppings at 10–20 mm long.
Rats produce 3–6 litters a year with up to 10 pups in each litter.
Rats are adventurous, omnivorous eaters who will feed on a variety of grains and meats.
They forage overnight and nest in garages, trees, and basements.
How do Mice Differ From Rats?
Mice are obviously smaller than rats, but they have other differences as well:
The house mouse is usually just 2–4 inches long.
Mice have larger ears and a longer tail compared to its body length.
Mice are often gray or brown in color, with a lighter shade or white color on their bellies.
Mice droppings have pointed ends and are just 1–2 mm long.
Most mice feed on fruits, seeds, grains, and occasionally meat.
They produce 5–10 litters a year with up to 14 mice in each litter.
Mice forage at dusk and nest in attics, garages, basements, and more.
Dangers of Rodents
Rats and mice are similar in that they both can pose a threat to the safety of you and your family with their activities. Rodents are infamous for their ability to carry and spread a number of potentially dangerous diseases. They also can trigger allergies in people. A rodent problem can be a mess to clean up due to the amount of droppings and urine left behind. Lastly, they can cause significant damage to your home. Both mice and rats will chew through insulation, cardboard, wood, and electrical wiring. Due to this reason alone, always contact your local rodent exterminator for help with rat or mouse problems.
Rats and Mice in Las Vegas
The bottom line is that you don’t want rats or mice infesting your property. They both can be dangerous and destructive. As soon as you spot the signs of an infestation, it’s time to contact the rodent exterminatorsat Western Exterminator of Las Vegas.
Here in Las Vegas, pest infestations are a year-round problem. Rodents are one of the most common fall pest problems, and they have been made worse this year by the pandemic. When restaurants and bars closed down or limited operations, rodents suddenly found themselves without their typical source of food. This forced them to look elsewhere and to compete for the little resources available. Unfortunately, this has led to a direct increase in residential infestations. Rodents aren’t just a nuisance—they can be very dangerous if they infest your property. For this reason alone, it’s crucial to learn how to prevent them. This Rodent Awareness Week, the Western Exterminator team is sharing their top tips for rodent prevention.
Are Rats & Mice More Dangerous During COVID-19?
We all know rats and mice have been linked to a number of dangerous diseases, but what about COVID-19? Thankfully, there is no current evidence or research to show that rodents are transmitting the current strain (SARS-CoV-2) to humans. Here’s what we do know about rodents during the pandemic:
With the shelter in place orders, there have been a number of reported cases of rats and mice becoming more bold and rampant in the absence of food sources.
The surge in rodent activity leads to a bigger risk of infestations and rodent-spread issues.
They won’t COVID-19 to you or your family, but rodents still can spread other diseases including hantavirus, salmonellosis, and more.
Once inside your home, rodents can cause damage with their chewing and nesting habits.
Best Rodent Prevention Tips
The last thing you have time to deal with right now is a rodent infestation. Here are our top tips to keep them away during the pandemic:
Store all food securely. Make sure all open food is sealed in tight-fitting containers with lids.
Seal holes around pipes. Use caulk or wire wool to cover up gaps and openings near pipes and other openings.
Cover vents. Install mesh screens on your vents. Also, consider installing screens on doors and windows.
Use tight lids on trash cans. Rodents love to rummage in the garbage! If possible, keep your trash cans sealed.
Protect eaves. Fix any damaged roofing and use wire mesh to seal gaps in your eaves.
Fall Rodent Infestations in Las Vegas
All year long, the team at Western Exterminator of Las Vegas is committed to protecting our customers from pest problems. This Rodent Awareness Week, we are shedding a light on the rise of rat infestations. If you need assistance protecting your property, our rodent exterminators can help. Contact us today to learn more!
Here in Las Vegas, we don’t experience the drastic seasonal changes some parts of the country do. But that’s not to say we don’t experience seasonal pest problems! One of the most common pest infestations in the fall are rodents. Rats and mice alike will get indoors as soon as the temperature begins to dip. Once inside, they can cause a ruckus and spread potentially dangerous germs and disease. Here at Western Exterminator of Las Vegas, we understand how distressing a rodent infestation can be for you and your family. For that reason, we are here to share our top fall rodent infestation prevention tips.
Tips & Tricks to Prevent Rats & Mice
The key to rodent control is prevention. By making your property less attractive to the pests, you can effectively prevent an infestation. Our top tips include:
Keep your yard trimmed and neat. Any trees or vines close to your home will welcome rats onto your roof.
Store all food securely. Keep all open food in tight-fitting containers with lids.
Seal cracks and crevices. Use caulk or wire wool to cover up gaps and openings near pipes and other openings.
Cover vents. Install mesh screens on your vents. Also consider installing screens on doors and windows.
Use tight lids on trash cans. Rodents love to rummage in the garbage! If possible, keep your trash cans sealed and stored.
Cover and protect your eaves. Fix any damaged roofing and use wire mesh to seal gaps in your eaves.
How Dangerous are Fall Rodent Problems?
If you’re hearing rustling in the walls or gnawing noises, chances are you may have a rodent problem. For the most part, rats and mice will take shelter in the attic, basement, and garage. They also will infest kitchens, laundry rooms, and are highly likely to invade your trash cans if given the chance. A rat or mouse problem often begins when the rodents get in through your chimney, pipes, air vents, and more. With incisors that never stop growing, their chewing habits can be destructive. They also are known carriers of germs and bacteria that can cause disease. For this reason alone, it’s crucial to learn how to keep rodents away for good.
Rodent Prevention in the Fall Months
A rat or mouse infestation is bad news all around. As soon as you notice the signs of rodents in your property, or if you want to implement exclusion tactics, contact the rodent exterminators at Western Exterminator of Las Vegas.
Rodent problems are any property owner’s worst nightmare. Rats and mice can cause damage, chew through wires, make a mess with their nesting, and even can transmit a number of dangerous diseases. Some of the most infamous diseases spread by rats and mice include hantavirus, salmonella, and even the plague. Because there are more dangers of rodents than you may realize, it’s always important to work with a professional rodent exterminator to prevent them in the first place.
Dangerous Diseases Transmitted by Rodents
Historically, some of the world’s worst illnesses have been tied back to rodents. Although the bubonic plague was transmitted by fleas, plenty of rats and mice carried the fleas and contributed to the outbreak. Today, some of these diseases are still a threat, especially if you’re dealing with a rodent infestation. The main mice-borne diseases to be aware of include:
Hantavirus. Most often found in the urine and feces of deer mice, hantavirus can cause symptoms from fever and chills to aches in pains. In serious cases, it can lead to kidney failure or worse.
Salmonella. The bacteria spread by rats and mice can track onto food. The most infamous bacteria is of course salmonella, known as food poisoning.
Lyme Disease. This is of course transmitted by ticks, which are often carried by rats and mice. This disease is dangerous and can have long-term effects on health.
Plague. Historically, the bubonic plague was caused by infected fleas that were carried by rats and mice. This disease can still be spread today.
Do Rodents Cause Structural Damage?
A rat or mouse pest problem can cause a major mess in your property. Rats have incisors that never stop growing, meaning they never stop chewing. One of the most dangerous things rats chew on are electrical wires. Needless to say, exposed wires can create a fire hazard. Additionally, rats and mice will tear up any type of material to create nests. Rats are able to make their way through tough materials, leaving the very structure of your property at stake.
The Importance of Rats & Mice Exterminators
If you have a rat or mouse problem, you’re almost certainly going to need help to get rid of them! The many dangers of rodents can cause a hazardous environment in your property, a rodent control expert is the one to call. At Western Exterminator of Las Vegas, our team has the experience and resources needed to get rid of rats and mice in your property for good.
Hindsight may be 20/20, but when it comes to pests this year, Rentokil is looking into its crystal ball to help homeowners proactively defend their homes against pest infestation.
The experts at Rentokil used their field experiences and examined trends and company data to determine the following six pest predictions. Along with the predictions, we are offering some quick tips for homeowners to help keep their homes pest-free in the new year.
Populations of disease-spreading mosquitoes, such as the yellow fever mosquito and the Asian tiger mosquito, have surged in recent years in some Western states. These mosquitoes, along with the already well-established common house mosquito, can spread diseases such as West Nile virus, Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE), and Zika virus, as well as the parasite that causes heartworm in pets.
Homeowner Tips: To protect yourself and your family, dispose of standing water from your property. It only takes a tablespoon of water for mosquitoes to breed. When spending time outdoors, protect yourself and your family by always wearing an EPA-approved insect repellent.
In recent years, in major metropolitan areas across the country, rat populations have surged. Expect to see that trend continue and watch for rat activity to increase in suburban areas, as well. Warmer winters, a booming construction pipeline, lack of sanitation control, and an affordable housing crisis are all issues that have contributed to the swell of recent rat activity.
Homeowner Tips: To deter rats, take the following steps: Eliminate excess vegetation, especially dense low-vegetation that serves as hiding places for rats. Keep trees cut back from the roofline. Seal any exterior openings larger than a nickel with rodent-proof material such as hardware cloth or flashing. Finally, ensure that all trash is sealed in bags and placed into garbage cans with well-fitting lids to prevent an infestation.
Termites are the most destructive pests in North America, causing $6 billion in property damage each year. These wood-destroying pests are a continual problem for homeowners in the Western U.S., and this year could bring heavier pressure than usual. Rentokil experts have seen an increase in activity from subterranean and dampwood termites in many areas this year.
Homeowner Tips: To deter termites, eliminate soil to wood contact and avoid moisture accumulation near your home or structures’ foundation. Remove excess wood (stumps, lumber, etc.) from your yard. Unfortunately, termites can be present for years before homeowners ever seen signs of their activity, causing extensive and costly damage. To avoid this, have a termite protection plan in place. Speak to your pest control provider about risk and protection options for your home.
Cockroach populations have boomed over the past several years, due in large part to wetter springs and winters. Cockroaches carry diseases, infest stored food, and spread these diseases through their excrement. Cockroach removal is vital as infestations can be serious if not taken care of in a timely manner.
Homeowner Tips: The biggest attractant for cockroaches is food. Keep a clean kitchen, mopping or sweeping up any spills. Cockroach-proof your home by sealing small cracks and crevices around windows and door frames with a silicone-based caulk. Ensure that door seals, including the one on your garage, are in place and intact. If you’re experiencing cockroach problems, speak with your pest control professional to determine the best solution for your home.
If you have noticed more flies in your area, you aren’t alone. Filth flies – house flies, bottle flies, flesh flies – are more abundant than we’ve seen in previous years. You can thank increasing population density, waste management practices that haven’t kept pace with growth, and a general trend toward a warming climate for the fly pressure.
Homeowner Tips:Fly activity can be difficult to control, but there are preventative steps homeowners can take to keep them at bay. Screen all windows and doors. Keep trash stored away from your home and ensure that all trash cans have tight-fitting lids. If flies are bothering you when sitting outside, use a box or oscillating fan to keep them away. When air is moving, flies have a hard time landing.
Last year, spiders arrived early and more people reported seeing spiders in their homes. Spiders eat other insects, therefore, heavy rain and record-breaking temperatures over the last few years have created the perfect conditions for the smaller insects that spiders love to eat. With a steady food source, spider populations are increasing. Although beneficial for our ecosystem, most people prefer spiders to stay outside where they belong.
Homeowner Tips:Fortunately, most species of spiders can not survive indoors as their systems are built for outdoor weather. If the thought of spiders lurking around freaks you out, try changing your white outdoor light bulbs to yellow light bulbs, which attract fewer insects that can serve as food for the spiders. There are a few species of spiders that can live indoors and need to be controlled by spider removal experts.
The experts at Rentokil agree that a proactive approach is the first step any homeowner can take to prevent pest issues. With these 2020 pest predictions in mind, take time to evaluate your current pest control plan and ensure that you have the protection you need to protect yourself and your family from pests this year.
Compared to most of the states in the country, Las Vegas experiences pretty mild winters. However, that doesn’t mean that residents don’t experience winter pest problems all the same! Rodents are a common problem throughout the entire year, but infestations are especially common in the colder months. As temperatures drop, rats and mice will seek out warmth and shelter inside of homes. Once indoors, they can cause a lot of damage, making it important to know how to prevent them from getting in in the first place! Keep reading for expert tips from Rentokil on rodent control this winter.
Can Rats & Mice Survive the Cold?
Although many types of animals hibernate during the winter, the same cannot be said for rats and mice. In fact, they seem more active than ever with how common infestations are this time of year. In fact, The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) has reported that 21 million homes in the U.S. are invaded by rodents each winter!
Mice are infamous for being able to squeeze their bodies through the tiniest holes, which is why it’s crucial to seal your home properly.
Rodent Control Checklist
Inspecting your property is a great way to lessen the risk of a rodent infestation. Locating and fixing anything that is in need of repair can effectively keep rats and mice outdoors. There are eight areas in particular to inspect to prevent rodents:
Roof: Replace and repair shingles or any other roof damage
Vents: Cover all vents securely
Screens: Fix or replace any damaged window, door, or porch screens
Vegetation: Keep a tidy yard and cut tree limbs back away from your home
Gutters: Clean debris from gutters and downspouts
Outside: Securely seal trash cans and keep a clean yard
Garage: Make sure your garage closes flush to the ground
Foundation: Seal any cracks or crevices larger than a dime
Year-Round Rodent Prevention
If you’ve done all you can to prevent rats or mice and still have noticed the signs of an infestation, it’s time to call the rodent exterminators at Rentokil. Our team specializes in preventing pest problems before they begin, making us your local leaders in rodent control and removal. To learn more about keeping rats and mice out of your home during the winter and all year long, call us!
You might be thinking mice and rats aren’t really a problem in Southern Nevada. Unfortunately, rodents are a year-round pest problem here in Las Vegas and Henderson. Believe it or not, rodents are actually a very common problem in the fall and winter months. This is because as our temperatures drop, rodents and other pests will look to make their way indoors to wait out the colder months. To avoid dealing with rodents inside your property this time of year, keep reading to learn Western Exterminator’s tips to keep them away!
Rodents in the Winter
Rodents are sneaky critters and often only come out at night when the house is at rest. Once they make their way inside and establish nests, you will start to see activity or at least signs of mice (or possibly roof rats). These common pests are resourceful creatures that can enter a building or home through the smallest opening or crack, and require very little space to travel inside. Mice can easily fit through spaces as small as a nickel!
Mice and roof rats seek shelter indoors, especially during winter months, and once inside can cause more than just an unpleasant infestation. Rodents put homes at risk for electrical fires by gnawing through wires. More frequently, though, rodents serve as vectors, carrying bacteria, such as salmonella, on their bodies and contaminating food sources, kitchen surfaces, and equipment. The common white-footed deer mouse is also known to transmit the potentially fatal Hantavirus.
Simple Rodent Prevention Tips
Fortunately, there are many ways you can proactively prevent and get rid of rodent infestations in your home. Our top ten tips to prevent rats and mice in the winter and all year long are as follows.
Install door sweeps on exterior doors and repair damaged screens.
Screen vents and openings to chimneys.
Seal cracks and holes on the outside of the home, including areas where utilities and pipes enter the home, using caulk, steel wool, or a combination of both.
Store food in airtight containers and dispose of garbage regularly.
Keep attics, garages, and crawl spaces well ventilated and dry.
Replace loose mortar and weather stripping around the foundation and windows.
Eliminate all moisture sites, including leaking pipes and clogged drains that provide the perfect breeding site for pests.
Inspect items such as boxes, grocery bags, and other packages brought into the home.
Keep shrubbery trimmed and cut back from the house.
If you suspect a pest infestation in your home, contact a licensed pest professional to inspect and treat the pest problem.
How to Get Rid of Rodents in Las Vegas
If you spot evidence of a rodent infestation, do not hesitate to act to handle the problem. Rodents are known to reproduce quickly, and a small problem can turn into a big issue overnight if left untreated. For this reason, it’s always best to enlist the help of a professional rodent control company. Contact the experts at Western Exterminator of Las Vegas to learn how we can protect you from rats and mice!
The roof rat is the most common rodent to invade Las Vegas and Henderson homes and they can be very destructive. Roof rats, as their name indicates, like high places, building their nests outdoors in trees or block walls and indoors in attics or upper levels of the home. Roof rats are very good climbers and can get into the home by running along tree branches, cables or wires.
How Do I Know If I Have Roof Rats?
Rats are nocturnal — that is, they are most active at night — and they live in hidden areas, so you can have a major rat problem in your home even if you never see any. Because of this, you need to keep an eye – and an ear – out for signs of rodent presence. Inspect your yard and home thoroughly. If the answer to any of the following questions is yes, you may have a rat problem.
Do you see droppings, especially around dog or cat dishes or pet food containers?
Have you had visual sightings of roof rats on fences, block walls, trees or eaves?
Do you find hollowed citrus and other chewed fruit in your yard?
Do you hear scratching sounds from the attic after dusk?
Are your pets sometimes unsettled for no apparent reason?
Have you ever removed a drowned roof rat from your swimming pool?
Do you find dark smudge marks along block walls or outside patio areas?
Roof rat Control
Once rats have invaded your garden or landscaping, unless your house is truly rodent proof, it is only a matter of time before you find evidence of them indoors. Experience has shown it is less time consuming to control rodents before their numbers get too high, and fewer traps and less bait will be required if control is started early. Many home owners in the Las Vegas and Henderson area will often opt to hire a professional extermination company that is trained to deal with roof rats before the pesky rodents take over their home.
The roof rat (Rattus Rattus) gets its name from its tendency to be found in the upper parts of buildings. According to the Southern Nevada Health District, roof rats have been documented in the Las Vegas valley since 1990. Initial identifications were made in areas including Spanish Trails and the Scotch 80’s, and were associated with imported palm trees.
Today, however, roof rats can be found in every neighborhood across our valley. From Anthem to Centennial Hills they can often be seen at night running along overhead utility lines or block walls. They may live in trees or attics, and climb down to a food source.
Roof rats are primarily nocturnal and usually begin searching for food shortly after sunset. If the food source is in an exposed area and can’t be eaten quickly, they will carry it to a hiding place before eating it. Many rats hoard considerable amounts of solid food, which they eat later in a dismantled wood pile, attic, shed or behind boxes in a garage.
To make your home less attractive to roof rats, follow these suggestions to reduce any type of rodent infestation:
Caulk all holes, cracks, crevasses, or gaps (any opening larger than a nickel) on the exterior walls and underneath the eaves of block or wood constructed homes, sheds, etc.
Pet doors, vents, and exterior door and window screens should be secured at night.
Secure garbage in proper rodent-proof containers.
Remove attractants such as pet foods, bird feeders, and standing water. Since these rats usually require free water, any source of water can be a strong attractant.
Prune shrubs so that the ground below them is clearly visible.
Stack firewood, lumber and other materials at least one foot away from walls and fences and at least 18 inches off the ground.
Eliminate or severely prune back vines growing on buildings and fences.
Prune trees so that the branches do not touch roofs, fences, overhead wires, or the branches of adjacent trees.
Prune the skirts of trees so that the branches do not hang down to the ground.
If you live in Las Vegas or Henderson and roof rats have overtaken your home or you simply want to prevent a rodent problem, we welcome you to contact us by phone or fill out our form. No matter how large a rodent problem you may have, our trained pest control technicians can curb your existing rodent activity and ensure that these pests are not an issue in the future.
For residential and commercial rodent control and prevention in Las Vegas and Henderson, call Western Exterminator today!