If you have heard the pitter-patter of little feet during the night coming from the attic or the walls it is very likely that you are dealing with a rodent infestation. Rodent control has become a major problem for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that rodents are warm-blooded animals which enables them to survive in almost any condition that humans live in. Rats and mice often infest attics, crawl spaces, garages, and basements.
Rats and mice invade homes looking for food and shelter but threaten home and business owners by spreading diseases and potentially damaging property. Aside from infesting food supply, rodents also build their nests in insulation and chew wiring and the structure itself. In addition, rodents have a rapid breeding rate; a couple of mice or rats in your home can quickly multiple into an infestation.
Rodent Control Methods
Croach Services implements a number of unique approaches to rodent control, using effective methods of inspection, extermination and exclusion to remove these damaging pest from your property and to prevent them from coming back. At Croach Services Pest Control, we believe that the best form of rodent control is prevention; rodents only need an opening ¼” to gain access to your home which is why we focus on rodent-proofing exclusion as well as baiting and trapping.
Unlike many insect pests, rodents have a higher level of intelligence and wariness that makes them difficult to eliminate, which is why it is recommended to refer to a professional rodent control expert. Our Croach Services technicians have years of experience and are able to determine where the rodent infestations are located, and will also implement tailored treatments that will eliminate rodent problems.
Steps to Rodent Control:
Step 1: Inspection – Call our office for a free phone consultation or to schedule an inspection.
Step 2: Trapping – The technician will do a thorough inspection and damage assessment so he can give an accurate estimate for repair costs. It is crucial to employ trapping methods at this point in order to eliminate the rodents before moving forward.
Step 3: Exclusion – The best form of rodent prevention is to shut them out of the structure. Mice can creep in through an opening as small as ¼ inch, but our experienced technicians know where to look for these openings. Exclusion work is the process of locating and closing off or sealing the rodents’ points of entry to the home.
Step 4: Restoration/ Sanitization – In some cases, it is necessary to replace the insulation and vapor barrier in the home. Rodent droppings, urine, carcasses, and other contaminates can cause considerable damage underneath the home and pose a health hazard. The Triad Green Building Council estimates that 60% of the air you breathe on the ground floor of a home with a vented crawl space actually comes from the crawl space. For this reason, many of our crawl space repair plans include sanitizing and deodorizing the entire area as part of the restoration.
Step 5: Prevention– The best form of rodent control is prevention. Croach Services maintenance plans are designed to prevent a re-infestation of the home. This is primarily achieved through monitoring rodent bait stations around the exterior perimeter of the home on a bi-monthly basis.
Sanitation is also essential for rodent control. Although having a sanitary home or business will not necessarily prevent a rodent infestation, having unsanitary conditions will attract rodents to your home or business and significantly increase the chances of these pests invading. Occasionally, it is necessary to replace insulation that has been infested because it can pose a health hazard and even effect air quality.
The most successful and permanent form of house rodent control is to “build them out” by eliminating all openings through which they can enter a structure. All places where food is stored, processed or used should be made rodent-proof. Dried grain and meat products should be stored in glass jars, metal canisters or other re-sealable airtight containers.
Seal any openings larger than 1/4 inch to exclude rodents. Steel wool mixed with caulking compound makes a good plug. Patching material needs to be smooth on the surface to prevent rodents from pulling out or chewing through the patching compound. Seal cracks and openings in building foundations and openings for water pipes, vents and utilities with metal or concrete. Doors, windows and screens should fit tightly. It may be necessary to cover the edges with metal to prevent gnawing. Plastic sheeting or screen, wood, rubber or other gnawable materials are unsuitable for plugging holes used by rodents.
Trapping can be effective if there are only a few rodents present in a building. However, if a rodent witnesses another rodent getting caught in a snap-trap, they will avoid the traps. This condition is called “bait shyness”. That is why scientists have developed baits that take up to five days to kill them. Trapping is a highly effective method of rat control used in the communities around Seattle and Portland.
Bait Selection and Placement
Baits are available in several forms. Grain baits in a meal or pellet form are available in small plastic, cellophane or paper packets. These sealed “place packs” keep bait fresh and make it easy to place the baits in burrows, walls or other locations. Rodents gnaw into the packet to feed on the bait. Block style baits are also very effective for most situations. Proper placement of baits and the distance between placements is important. For effective control, baits or traps must be located where rodents are living. Croach Services’ rodent control technicians use tamper-resistant bait stations to provide a safeguard for people, pets and other animals from accidentally getting to the bait. We place the bait stations next to a wall or in other places where rodents are active.