Differences Between Roof Rats & Norway Rats In Elizabeth City
February is sometimes thought of as the month of love. You love your house. You probably don’t love rats. We can all agree that you don’t want rats running around your home any time of year, but it’s particularly important to check your home now before they start breeding in the spring. This month, take some time to observe the perimeter and interior of your home for signs of rats or other rodent infestation. Here’s everything you need to know to observe and safeguard your home.
How to Identify Roof Rats and Norway Rats
These rats are also sometimes called black rats because they’re usually black or grey. They’re quite a bit smaller than Norway rats; in fact, they can sometimes be confused with house mice. Roof rats earned their name because they are excellent climbers, and they can sometimes get inside structures through the chimney.
Also called brown rats, these are the larger of the two species. They are often brown but could also appear tan or grey. They have longer, pointed snouts and long hairless tails. Unlike roof rats, Norway rats aren’t great climbers, but they can swim. Sometimes they get inside homes or businesses by swimming through the pipes.
Problems and Dangers Associated with Rats
Not only are rats unsightly, but they can also be hazardous to your health. Rats are linked to several diseases and bacteria that can be transmitted to humans. To make matters worse, rats often carry other invasive and dangerous pests such as fleas and ticks, both of which are known to carry even more diseases.
Rats are also messy. They may leave feces and urine throughout the house, and you may find fur and feces in their nesting area. Many rats have greasy fur and can leave grease stains along the walls or the furniture.
Rats also like food, like any pest. If they get into your pantry or cupboards, they can cause a lot of damage. They’ll contaminate any food they get into causing mess and waste.
Lastly, rats gnaw constantly in order to keep their teeth trimmed. They may damage your home, your furniture, and your belongings. Even worse than that, they could chew on electronics or wires behind the walls, cause expensive repairs or even electric fires in worst case scenarios.
The Best Way to Keep Rats out of Your Home
So how can you keep your home rat free? Here are some tips:
- Keep your home clean. Take special care to clean the kitchen and bathroom, which are both areas that might attract rats.
- Organize any storage areas in your home, including the basement, attic, and garage. This will make it harder for rats to find good hiding and nesting places.
- Store food properly. Never leave food out overnight, and store food in hard plastic or glass air-tight containers that rats can’t gnaw through.
- Check the exterior of your home for holes or cracks that may be providing easy entry. Get vent covers and chimney covers to protect against roof rats.
- Set up year-round pest inspections. Albemarle Termite & Pest Solutions can conduct yearly visits in order to spot a rat problem early on.
If you suspect you already have a rat infestation, a professional technician from Albemarle Termite & Pest Solutions can stop by to take a look. Our experienced exterminators will ensure that you receive customized, fast, and safe treatment.
Now that you know the difference between Norway rats and roof rats, and understand that they’re both dangerous to have in or around your home, let Albemarle take the next step in getting them out of your Elizabeth City home and away from your family.