Roof Rat Facts
Black to brownish-gray; hard to identify by color alone
6-12 ounces; smaller than Norway Rat
7-10 inches; longer than the body
Thin, slender body, pointed nose
Relatively small; close to body
Large & prominent eyes; color blind
5 to 18 months
½ inch long with pointed ends; dark color; found scattered
Roof Rats - Control Options
The Roof Rat is implicated in the transmission of a number of diseases to humans and also to pets. They prefer to forage for food above ground in elevated areas indoors and out. Don't risk your family's and pet's safety with disease and potential damage that these creatures can cause.
Below is information on rat repellents and traps. We also offer some prevention tips that will minimize the growth of rodent populations. Rodent proofing your home is the best natural rat repellent.
These mechanical traps provide a quick solution to a rodent control problem and can be used many times. One advantage of rat traps is the ability to "recover" the rat to confirm its elimination.
The most important technique for effective trapping is good trap placement in areas of high rodent activity. The most common trapping mistake is using too few traps.
Statistics show that more rodents are trapped on the first night than on any other night. For this reason, it is essential to use a large number of traps initially.
Some rats are harder to catch and are Neophobic or "extra cautious" of new objects that suddenly appear in their environment. For these cases, rat traps should be placed out but left unset and baited for a couple of days prior to setting the traps.
Eliminate and Prevent Rat Infestation With Repellents
Ultrasonic rodent repellents are an effective method of controlling rats. These high-pitched frequency sound waves emit a non-repetitive pattern to prevent rodents from habituating to the sound.
For additional effectiveness, the loudest spike in sound replicates the scream of a dominant male mouse. Rodents are very territorial and will constantly fight to establish dominance. The sound of a dominant rodent will discourage others from inhabiting a territory.
It is important to note that ultrasonic frequencies do not travel between walls. So for the most effective rat control, ultrasonic units need to be placed in multiple rooms.
The most common repellent mistake is using them alone to control an established infestation.
Rodent populations will continue to increase in conditions that allow easy access to food and shelter.
Sanitation efforts in conjunction with rodent proofing provide the best solution to reducing or completely eliminating these conditions.
To adequately keep rats out of your home, all openings need to be sealed off - remember rats only need an opening of 1/2" or the size of a nickel to gain entry to your home.
In addition to exclusion, careful storage of foods and elimination of clutter are valuable steps in the fight to control rats.
Roof Rats will thrive in poorly maintained areas, although the Roof Rat is less dependent on human food than the Norway Rat, providing their natural foods are available in vegetation.
Palm trees should be pruned regularly to remove dead fronds. Roof Rats can also thrive in overgrown bushes or beneath ivy thickets that run along fences or climb the sides of houses.
And remember, it only requires one poorly managed house or yard for a colony of rats to take over the neighborhood.