How To Keep Rodents Out Of Your Bay Area Home The Easy Way

rat in a tea set

There are three ways to keep rodents out of your home. Two are not easy. The first is to use your muscles to address factors around your home that can lead to a rat or mouse infestation. But it is easy to get behind or to come up against a project you can't tackle, which leads some residents to try the second way, which is to get rodent control products. Unfortunately, rodent control products require specialized knowledge. When misapplied or used in an incomplete strategy, they don't achieve results. Sometimes, they make the problem worse. Join us today as we walk you through the process of how to keep rodents away naturally and what works to keep them out of your home. Then, we'll discuss the third option for keeping rodents out of your home: professional rodent pest control in The Bay Area. We'll talk about methods your professional will use to keep rodents out and what they do on the inside of your home to ensure that no rodents remain. We're covering every aspect of how to control rats and mice. If you would prefer to skip reading an article about rodent control and speak with someone in person, we're happy to help with that as well. Navigate to our contact page and connect with us or just give us a call. We're happy to speak with you.  

Clear Signs Of A Rodent Infestation On Your Property

rat eating grapes

There are only a few ways to tell that you have rodents on your property. These warning signs are subtle, so it is likely you'll have to look for them. Here's what you're looking for around your home.

Rats And Mice: Obviously, the best way to tell that you have rodents on your property is to actually see them. You may see one when you go into your attic or storage areas. All you have to do is flick a light on and move stored items. It is harder to detect rodents that haven't gotten in yet. They are active at night. It is hard to see them in your yard. To make things harder, roof rats are black and house mice are dark gray. 

Rodent Droppings: You don't have to see rodents to detect them. They leave their droppings for you to find. Rodent droppings are black. You may find them on utility boxes, underneath plumbing pipes, and along your foundation walls. On the interior of your home, look for droppings in hidden places. You may find them in your kitchen cabinets, on the floor of your pantry, behind your oven, or in attic spaces. When you find droppings, clean them up. Doing so will allow you to check back later and see if more droppings appear. If they do, you have a current and active infestation. When cleaning up droppings, wear a respirator and rubber gloves to guard against illness-causing microorganisms and airborne diseases. 

Holes: Rats and mice chew holes. If you see gnaw marks on wood or concrete, you know something is up. You may also see holes in weatherstripping, door sweeps, frames, sills, screens, and other building materials.

Grease Marks: When rats and mice move about around or underneath a home, they often leave grease marks. The fur of a rodent tends to be greasy. You may see grease marks on wood members or on top of pipes. Dark grease marks are an indication that many rodents are traveling the route.  

If you find evidence of rodents entering your home, skip to the last section of this article. The next two sections focus on keeping rodents out of your home. If you have rodents already inside your home, you don't need rodent prevention, you need interior rodent control. 

Five Tips For Effective Rodent Prevention

If you don't see evidence of rodents entering your home, you're in good shape. There are many ways you can work to keep rodents out of your yard and away from your exterior. Here are five that will provide the most protection possible.

  1. Remove ground clutter in your yard. Rodents have poor eyesight but they use their other senses to easily navigate, even in the pitch dark. One of the senses they use most is their sense of touch. Ground objects provide the sensory input rodents need to move across yards easily.
  2. Remove stacked objects near your home. Rats and mice like to hide inside and underneath objects that are in a pile. They are particularly attracted to dead branches and scrap wood. Move these away from your exterior and store them in a bin if possible.
  3. Remove access to voids underneath structures. Hardware cloth can keep rodents from getting underneath your back deck, shed, or some other structure on your property. You can also use hardware cloth to prevent rats and mice from entering through vents.
  4. Remove hiding places in your landscaping. Rats and mice love to hide in vegetation. When you remove weeds, unwanted grass, and other plant clutter, you make rodents feel exposed when they get into your landscaping.
  5. Address potential food options. Rats and mice are attracted to the scent of garbage. Trash management is critical. They also eat seeds and nuts. Remove bird feeders from your yard and stay on top of cleaning up nuts that fall from trees if you want to make your yard more resistant to rodents.

Rodents seem like mysterious animals, but they're not all that mysterious. They are attracted to conditions and environments that are beneficial to their survival. Your goal is simply to make your yard less beneficial to them.   

How And Why Rodents Find Their Way Into Our Homes

When rodents persist in entering your yard and coming near to your exterior, they can get the bright idea that living in your home is a pretty good idea. How do they get this idea? They find routes. Here are a few of the routes rodents take to go from outdoor environments to indoor spaces.

  • A little mouse can't help but explore the gap around a pipe. Use expanding foam to seal those gaps and keep rodents from getting the wrong idea.
  • Rodents live in trees and logs, you can expect them to check out rotted wood holes in the wood of your home. Use expanding foam or a caulking gun to fill in wood holes or gaps between wood members.
  • Rodents climb trees and run along branches, just like a squirrel. They also have the ability to jump several feet and fall from high locations without hurting themselves. Don't put it past a little mouse to jump four feet from a branch to your roof. If you think they can't do this, you're underestimating these tiny rodents. Trim branches away from your roofline to prevent rodents from getting on your roof.
  • Rodents climb up downspouts to get onto roofs. If you stuff something in your downspouts that prevents rodents from climbing up but still allows rainwater to flow down and out of your gutter system, you may keep rodents from getting up to your roof and finding a route into your attic.
  • Rodents use the tiniest of holes. An adult mouse can get through a gap the width of a dime and a hole a little larger than a nickel. Adult rats can fit through a gap the width of a quarter. If you have storm cellar doors and a small hole at the bottom of the doors where they touch, that is all a little mouse needs. If you have a tiny gap in a door sweep or weatherstripping, a mouse can squeeze right in.

Address routes and entry points to keep rodents out of your home. In most cases, no more rodent control is required, but when rodent pressures are high, or conducive conditions are hard to correct, more control is needed.    

The Most Effective Rodent Control For Your Home

There are many ways you can work to keep rodents out of your house. Sometimes all it takes is applying foam sealant for mice and rats. When more control is needed, a licensed pest control professional is the best choice. A service technician has specialized knowledge and uses a combination of inspections, control methods, and monitoring devices to stop rodents. If the rodent pressures in your yard are high, your service technician will use tamper-resistant bait stations to cull rodent populations. Fewer rodents in your yard will result in fewer attempts at entry. Along with bait, your service technician will evaluate the conditions and inform you of things you may address and also help by applying certain exclusions for you.

If rodents are already infesting your home, a trained and experienced professional applies a multi-pronged strategy to remove the rodents, alter the conditions of infestation, and seal the entry points they are using to get inside. Rats and mice are not easy to control, and failing to control them can allow rodents to continue to impact your health and damage your property.

Are you having trouble with rodents in the Bay Area? Contact Bay Pest for advanced rodent pest control. We use the most trusted products and strategies to remove rodents and keep them out.        

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