Wake County, Raleigh Rat Control Situation:
How can I tell if I have rats or mice hanging out in my walls/attic? We haven't found any signs of anything getting into the main part of the house, but every once in a while we hear them scurrying around in one spot. We only hear them in the evening, and we haven't heard them very often (tonight is the first time I have noticed them in two weeks, but I'm also not home every evening). First we thought it was mice, but I am starting to worry that they might be rodents nesting for the winter. I checked outside and couldn't find any visible entry points, nor any footprints on the roof. I also looked under the roof overhang on that side of the house and there are no holes there. I can't tell if I am hearing squirrel chirping or mouse squeaking--it's almost a squeak-like chirp (real helpful, I know). If we can't find any holes for them to get in, it makes me think mice, but if we haven't seen any signs of them in the house and only hear them in one spot, it makes me think squirrels. Whatever it is has had access to this spot for quite some time, so if they are rats, I think we need to act ASAP, as per the damage reports I've seen on websites. Any and all advice you have to diagnose what we are dealing with would be greatly appreciated! Thanks for your help! - Kristin
My response: Sounds like mouse or rat activity to me. Squirrels are active in the daytime, and people usually hear a lot of morning noise. If you inspect the attic, you can tell by the droppings left behind.
Raleigh Rat Control Tip of The Week
Will Rats Hide From People?
The survival instinct of rats leads them to be cautious animals. The fear of being eaten by other predators makes them live in dark places and avoid being seen in broad daylight. People who come in contact with a rat may have several reactions, but the most common one is panic trying to shoo it away or kill it with whatever they have on hand. This situation causes fear in rodents who will look for hiding places and avoid being seen again.
The Mystery Of Smell
Rats use their powerful sense of smell as an effective survival technique. Through odors, a rat can perceive a predator, including species that are still unknown to the animal. Surprisingly, rats flee from cats not only because they know they may be eaten, but also because cat saliva contains chemicals that cause fear when rodents detect them.
Rats Are Pests To Humans
Farmers usually farm in warm places with relative humidity. Likewise, city dwellers tend to have a busy lifestyle, so their environment can quickly lead to clutter and disorder. Both scenarios are perfect for rodents who need the shelter and food provided by a barn, a dump, a messy house, or a sewer.
Rats are quite practical and, if necessary, can adapt to living anywhere, even in a somewhat messy house. The conditions for living comfortably and reproducing are emphasized in people's homes.
Human beings can unknowingly provide rodents with everything they need to survive, turning them into a pest. Rats, being able to take advantage of everything, from rigorously stored food to napkins thrown away, are able to grow as a population. The main consequence of a growing rodent population is the damage to people's health.