Roof Rats

Roof Rat Facts

Scientific Name:

Rattus Rattus


Black to brownish-gray; hard to identify by color alone


6-12 ounces; smaller than Norway Rat


6-8 inches

Tail Length:

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 - Identify Damage

Droppings, gnaw marks, and urine odors are just a few signs of rat activity.



Droppings are the most commonly encountered evidence of rodent activity. Even a small rat infestation can produce literally thousands of droppings in a short period of time.

An adult rat typically produces 40 to 50 droppings per day. These fecal pellets are usually dark-colored, 1/2 inch in length, and pointed at both ends.

Gnaw Marks

Gnaw Marks

Evidence of recent gnawing is an excellent sign for determining the presence of Roof Rats.

Rats tend to gnaw on wooden structures such as corners, floor joists, and wall studs. When Roof Rats gnaw holes into cartons and boxes, the holes typically measure about 2 inches in diameter and contain rough, torn edges.

Sounds and Odors

Sounds & Odors

Another indication that rats are present is a strong musty odor. Cats and dogs may sniff excitedly and probe an area where rats or mice are present and will often indicate this by scratching or making unusual sounds.


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