When it comes to pest threats, there are few that can equal the threat rodents present to property owners in Salt Lake City. Mice and rats are destructive animals that constantly gnaw on things to file their teeth down. Two things they're known to chew on are wires and gas lines. This can lead to a house fire, which can result in a catastrophic loss of property and potentially a loss of life. But this is far from the only way mice and rats can harm your health and property. They spread harmful microorganisms to your stored foods, food-prep surfaces, and dishes. They bring ticks, fleas, and other parasites into your home. They chew on your belongings and bore holes through building materials. It is not good to have mice and rats. If you're noticing rodent activity, here is a step-by-step guide to help you get control of them.
Step 1: Exclusion
You might think that trapping is the first step, but it shouldn't be. The last thing you want is for mice or rats to come into your home and replace the ones you've removed. Step one is to seal potential entry points and bolster your defenses.
Fill in gaps around pipes and wires that pass through your foundation walls.
Seal any gaps around your window or door frames.
Fill in any wood holes that have been chewed by rodents and other pests.
Replace door sweeps and weatherstripping that have holes chewed in them.
Replace damaged vent covers on exhaust vents.
Trim tree branches away from your roofline to keep roof rats off your roof.
Put wire mesh in your downspouts to prevent house mice from climbing up to your roof.
Step 2: Trapping
There is no better way to arrest a mouse or rat infestation than to apply traps. But keep in mind that there are many pitfalls to applying traps. Children can get into areas where traps have been placed and get injured. Traps can fail to capture mice or rats because they are placed wrong, or they have the wrong bait. But perhaps the worst issue with trapping mice and rats, is that you might catch one or two and think that you've resolved your issue. Rodents can continue to quietly infest your home without you knowing it. We recommend having a licensed pest professional trap the rodents in your home in order to achieve the results you're looking for, and to ensure the complete removal of rodents.
Step 3: Attractants
Once rodents have been removed from your home, it is important to consider rodent attractants around your home. The more rodents you have exploring your yard, the more likely it is that they'll get in again. An adult mouse can fit through a hole the size of a dime. An adult rat can fit through a hole the size of a quarter. Both have strong teeth that are able to make small holes large enough to fit through. It is best to not have rodent activity around your home, or to limit it as much as possible.
- Manage your trash. The scent of trash is a strong attractant for mice and rats. Keep trash bags in covered containers and keep your containers free of smells that will draw rodents to your property. If you can smell your trash can from three feet away, you can bet that rodents can smell it from a long distance.
- Consider birdseed. If you have seeds on the ground, mice and rats will love your yard. Seeds are an ideal food source.
- Consider pet food. If you feed an animal in your yard, be aware that rodents may eat that food as well. Refrain from putting food outside, or only put it down during mealtimes. Never leave it down overnight.
- Remove hiding places around your home. Mice and rats hide in yard clutter, and Norway rats like to create burrows underneath yard clutter. Remove objects that don't need to be in your yard and trim landscaping to open things up.
Step 4: Relax And Enjoy Your Rodent-Free Home
This last step is the easiest. Remember that the best way to achieve a rodent-free home is to let the professionals at White Knight Pest Control help. We use field-tested strategies and appropriate products to get control of mice and rats. Reach out to us for assistance at the first sign of rodent activity in your Salt Lake City home.