The winter pest..
As the weather cools one of the most common pests we are asked to manage is rodents, who seek warmth and shelter in your roof void or outbuildings.
Often you will be alerted to the presence due to hearing scratching noises in your roof void, staining marks on ceilings, or the unpleasant odour! Or lack of snails in your garden...
Identification is vital before any treatment can be carried out, and the easiest way is to inspect droppings which differ in size and shape depending on species.
"The Burrower" is brownish red in colour with small ears, blunt nose and stocky body. This rat burrows in close proximity to food and water sources preferring meat, fish and grains.
"The Climber" is dark grey with large ears, pointed nose and thin body. This rat nests in trees and roof voids in close proximity to food and water sources preferring fruits, vegetables, seeds and grains.
"The Scavenger " is black or dark grey with small head and body. This mouse can be found almost anywhere and will eat almost anything.
How do I prevent or minimise the risk of rodents?
Reduce harbourage by the below;
Eliminate rodents food and water sources
Keep leaf litter minimal
Good garden maintenance
Cut back overhanging trees
Ensure all waste is inside your waste bin with the lid tightly closed
You can also carry out some simple rodent proofing such as;
Seals around pipes, drains and vents need to be tight
Fill all entry points over 1/2cm with good quality steel wool
Close off all major holes in exterior and interior
Bristle strip installation to bottom of external doors
How can rodents be treated?
There are many treatment methods available including non-toxic options, the most important stage is identification then a treatment plan can be put in place to manage the activity.