Rats, Mice And Other Rodents
Spreading Disease. One way rodents make themselves unwelcome is by the potential they pose for making us sick. This may be caused in one of two ways – either by germs that are contained in their urine or feces, or by pathogens passed along by their parasites – their fleas, mites, or lice.
A great deal of study on these diseases has been done in the past 7 years, and it is believed that HPS and Arenavirus are transmitted to people in one principal way – through inhalation of “aerosolized” dust or droplets containing rodent feces or urine that are infected with the virus. The rodent excretes the virus with its waste material, and as the surfaces dry the virus remains in the dust on the surface. If this is disturbed in some way and becomes airborne it is possible for us to inhale the pathogens, and they rest in our lungs where they begin their work.
As with any kind of pest – bug or rodent – you want to make your home as UNinviting to the invader as you possibly can. The process called Integrated Pest Management – IPM – simply means that we want to change the environment that has welcomed the pest with open arms, and make it uncomfortable for them instead. The use of poisons to kill mice may be a very useful tool, but it is not the first step. It is the physical changes that you, as the owner of a property, should do to take that big first step in rodent elimination. These physical steps will be very important in ensuring the rodent control is done in the best manner and for long term.
Remove exterior debris: A rodent is not going to come strolling casually up your driveway, and hang around in the open waiting for a door to open. This would expose it to predators such as cats, dogs, hawks and owls. Instead, it will obtain access by using wood piles, yard debris, or any other piles of material that it can hide in and scurry to quickly as it approaches your home. Removing or properly stacking these types of materials takes away the security the rodent needs. Large expanses of shrubbery or ground cover, such as ivy, that cover the soil may also provide the ability of the rodent to remain hidden right up to your home, these should to be trimmed properly or even eliminated.
Remove access points: Only one quarter of an inch is all the mouse needs to get into your home. A critical inspection of the outside of the building will discover many such cracks – under doors, around windows, crawl space screens that are torn, holes where pipes or wires enter the home through a wall. These openings MUST be closed to prevent rodents from entering easily. You can use steel wool in small holes, concrete patch, new screening, or expanding foam that comes in aerosol cans.
Learn more about our Rodent Treatments from our Services page.