rodent pest control can be a challenge. There are so many different rodent types, each with its own set of issues and problems. Here is a brief overview of the more common types of rodents or pests found in a residential house.
A mouse infestation is not uncommon. They come inside our homes seeking food, shelter, or warmth ... and because they breed so quickly, a pair of mice can quickly become a Very Big Problem!
They can cause significant damage to the walls, as well as to the wiring and insulation in a home. Aside from this straight physical damage, the problem is compounded because the damage may provide an opening for other pests to enter the home. Mouse droppings contaminate everything they come into contact with and can spread parasites to humans.
Like with mice, sometimes rats may be in your home without you knowing it. They are not always easy to detect. If rats are now in your yard, it is likely only a matter of time before they come into the house if measures haven't been taken to try to repel or deter them.
Look for signs of burrows, or nest remnants in areas like stacks of firewood, or behind boxes or other hidden areas in garages or outdoor sheds. Pets may also sometimes kill a rat and bring it home to show their people! Rats are actually reputed to be quite intelligent and it can be a bit more challenging to bait and trap them. It's important to get a handle on the population before it gets too big, as rats can carry a number of diseases that are transmittable to humans. They can also damage walls, wiring, and insulation with their chewing, as well as foundations, attics, and even gardens.
No doubt about it, those cuddly-looking raccoon are adorable. They are also considered pests when they decide they're going to invade your home and make it theirs. Although technically not a "rodent", most people who have had to deal with them probably consider them one (or at least a "pest"!). Raccoon are both smart and destructive... plus they have the advantage of being able to use their paws similar to how we use our hands.
Because they can grow quite big and strong, care needs to be taken when dealing with them. They tend to love nesting in warm, dry areas like attics and even chimneys. Raccoon are nocturnal, so when you're trying to sleep, they're moving around and making noise - which is how most people are alerted to the problem!
They can chew or rip through many types of building materials (creating an opening through which other rodents can enter), and also can also carry and transmit serious diseases to human - notably rabies and roundworm (present in their feces).
Squirrels can be a major headache. They're abundant in areas with mature trees. These adaptable, fast little creatures spend their time relentlessly searching for food, plus they breed like crazy. They can gnaw openings into your home and build their messy nests in attics, roofs, walls, chimneys and vents, often using materials from your home (such as wood, drywall, insulation, and even vapour barrier). Squirrel constantly chew in order to keep their teeth from growing too long - this can make your headache even worse, since they can chew their electrical wiring, causing a major fire hazard (especially when combined with their dry nesting materials). They may also bring fleas and ticks into the home.
If you already have a rodent problem, humane pest control or removal may be possible. With so many different rodent types, it's a good idea to learn a little about them in order to figure out the best way to proceed. And once the problem is resolved it's time to turn your attention to prevention - by deterring rodents from entering your home, it lessens the chances that you'll have to deal with getting rid of them again in the future.