Rats

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Rattus norvegicus
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6" - 10"

To some, rats are pests - to others they are pets. For most people, rats are unwelcome and a serious risk to the integrity of their home.

Threat Level
7
Nuisance Score
9

Characteristics

Rats are considerably larger than mice, these furry rodents measure about 6-10 inches in length, not including their long, thin tails. They typically sport fur in shades of brown or black, making them harder to see in the dark. 

Much like mice, rats are great at climbing and also swimming! Rats were known to spread the bubonic plague, which makes them some of the most dangerous rodents on the planet.

Biology

Just like mice, rats are omnivores with an impressive dietary range that includes seeds, nuts, fruits, vegetables, and even the contents of your trash can. These creatures breed with staggering speed, with up to 12 litters in a year. In their natural habitats, rats can survive for up to 3 years.

Another interesting fact about rats is that their teeth never stop growing. By adulthood, a rat’s incisors  could be as long as 7mm. Rats are acutely social and incredibly intelligent - displaying their IQ by escaping traps and solving complex problems during experimentation.

Despite their spread of disease, rats are quite clean - engaging in grooming behaviors very frequently.

Habitat

Rats can thrive in a variety of habitats, from your attic to businesses, and even out in the wild in forests. They seem to have a particular fondness for warm and humid environments, just like the lovely climate we enjoy here in North Carolina.

Evidence of rats will be easily found if they’re in your home - you may see droppings or gnawed materia.

Human Interaction

Rats are more than just an unpleasant surprise in your kitchen or yard. They can be a real nuisance and a great risk for health. Capable of contaminating food, spreading diseases, and damaging property, rats need to be treated and removed. They also pose a fire risk, as their gnawing habits extend to electrical wires.

FAQ

How can I get rid of rats?
How do rats get into my home?
How do I identify a rat?

Pest Control

In situations where the rat infestation is severe, it's time to call in the professionals. A pest control company will have the necessary experience and expertise to resolve your rat problem quickly and effectively.

To stop these unwelcome guests from invading your home, consider some of the following:


  • Maintain cleanliness to discourage rats from finding food sources.
  • Store food, especially pet food, in airtight containers.
  • Regularly inspect your home for signs of rats.

I hope this information on rats has provided valuable insights into these creatures and has equipped you with the knowledge to tackle any potential rat problems in your home or yard.

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