Roof rats are a common problem Arizona homeowners face. They will eat your food, disrupt your living environment, and cause health issues if left untreated. That’s why we’ve put together this simple guide on how to identify a roof rat problem in Arizona and ways to quickly solve it.
In this blog, we’ll look at the following:
- What are roof rats?
- Why are roof rats in my house?
- What are the signs of roof rats in Arizona?
- How do you get rid of roof rats in your home?
What Are Roof Rats?
Roof rats (Rattus rattus) are also known as black rats, ship rats, or house rats. This species is a scourge to homes worldwide and are identified by its blackish-brown coloring and long tail. Their name and nicknames are indicators of where they tend to find shelter and cause damage.
Their nesting, breeding, and eating habits create unhealthy environments for humans, and they are quite detrimental to food and water supplies if they have access to them. Thus, we recommend when you first spot a sign of roof rats, you immediately deal with them.
Why Are Roof Rats in My House?
Roof rats are in your house because they are looking for food, water, and places to nest. Additionally, they prefer to be in higher locations to keep themselves safe from ground predators and to store their food safely.
Because roof rats are great climbers, they have no problem reaching hard-to-access spaces. This is why there are often roof rats in attics and ceilings, which cause the dreaded overhead scurrying sound typical of an infestation.
Read More: Common Household Pests in Phoenix?
Signs of Roof Rats in Arizona
Here are some signs that you might have a case of roof rats in Arizona:
1. Gnawed-On or Hollowed-Out Fruit: Roof rats are notorious for snacking on citrus fruits because they can get up trees, and they act as a great source of both food and water. However, they’re also not opposed to eating lower-hanging fruits – even if it’s sitting on your counter at home.
2. Rat Droppings: Roof rat droppings will look like small black pebbles or grains of rice. They will often accumulate around the nest or on the pathway to and from sources of food and water.
3. Gnaw and Claw Marks: Roof rats will tear at walls, furniture, or other items in order to produce shredding for their nests. Additionally, just by climbing and existing in your home, they’re sure to create additional wear and tear.
4. Squeaking or Scratching Noises: Also described as the overhead scurrying you normally have with a roof rat infestation, and is one of the more annoying symptoms of having them in your ceiling.
5. Strange Pet Behavior: Roof rats are known to disrupt household ecosystems – and this includes your beloved pets. Their scent and sound will cause dogs and cats to become wary, and they can often be great first trackers to pick up on a roof rat infestation.
If you’re seeing one or more of these signs before actually encountering a roof rat in your home, you still have time for some proactive measures before it becomes a serious infestation. When it does, you’ll likely need a professional pest control service provider to take care of it.
How to Get Rid of Roof Rats in Your Home
Once you’re aware of an infestation, getting rid of roof rats should be your number-one priority for your health, safety, and sanity. Here are some quick and effective measures to take for roof rat eradication:
- Tidy up your home: Roof rats are looking for food and water. If there are crumbs and scraps around your kitchen or living room, rats will surely find them. Similarly, if you have pet food, trash, or open supplies in your kitchen, this will attract plenty of unwanted guests into your home.
- Seal entry points: doors, windows, and cracks in your home are all entryways for roof rats. Sealing them will prevent them from entering and burrowing into your home.
- Trim trees and shrubs: Especially if they’re leading up to your roof, these are going to be the main access points for roof rats entering your home.
- Get a professional roof rat inspection: This is really the only reliable and effective long-term solution for preventing and removing roof rats from homes in Arizona. A professional pest control service can easily identify signs of infestation in your home, and their methods will surely get the job done.
Ultimately, roof rat infestations are problems that require professional solutions. Because of how smart, resilient, and capable these rodents are, simply catching one in a trap every so often won’t be enough to do the trick. Professional pest control technicians utilize hazard-free treatments potent enough to eradicate roof rats and keep them out for the long term.
Read More: What to do After Pest Control Treatment