Rodents

There are three main rodent pest species found in Australia today.

They are introduced rodents and cause problems in urban areas.  These are known as commensal rodents - those that live with or near people and depend on humans for at least part of their food or shelter.  They are often attracted to houses for food and shelter as the weather cools in autumn and winter.

Rodents prominent incisor teeth grow continuously.  Gnawing is a natural and necessary survival behaviour of the rat and mouse.  Rats and mice enjoy gnawing wires - a potential cause of fires in houses.

Rodents contaminate our environment with their urine and droppings and are known to be vectors of over 50 disease organisms including the causes of plague, leptospirosis, murine typhus and food poisoning.



 

                                                   Control Measures
INSPECTION
1.  An inspection of the premises is carried out by the Pest Technician to determine the species, the extent and severity of the problem, the location of harbourages and areas of activity and appropriate control strategies.

HYGIENE
2.  Hygiene is critical to any successful pest treatment.  Mow the lawn, eliminate clutter, debris, rubbish and access to pet food (metal containers and take in at night).  Limiting food, water and shelter makes it harder for the rodent ot survive and increases the effectiveness of control strategies.

RODENT PROOF YOUR HOUSE
3.  Keep them out!  This may be simple or not practical - a mouse can get through a hole the size of the tip of your little finger, a rat requires the size of the tip of your thumb.  The main areas of entry are door, overhanging branches, vents and penetrations for plumbing and electrical.

TRAPPING
4.  There are a variety of traps including sticky boards and snap traps.  The placement of these devices is critical to their success.

BAITING
5.  Baiting is the most common method used by Pest Technicians.  Death occurs from four days after commencement of feeding. 

 

Norway rat, Common rat, Brown rat, Sewer rat – Rattus norvegicus

Frontline Pest Management - Norway Rat

Norway rats are stocky medium to large rodents up to 25cms long and the length of their sparsely haired tail is shorter than that of the head and body. The snout is blunt, the ears are relatively short and thick, the fur is coarse, being brownish grey on the top and a lighter grey on the belly.

 

The brown rat is usually active at night and is a good swimmer, both on the surface and underwater, but unlike the related Black Rat they are poor climbers. Brown rats dig well, and often excavate extensive burrow systems.

 

The droppings of a Norway rat are large rectangular droppings which are characteristically blunt at both ends, similar to possum droppings, but these are usually redder in colour and grainier in texture.

 

Frontline Pest Management - Norway Rat Droppings
 
Roof rat, Ship rat or Black Rat – Rattus rattus
Frontline Pest Management - Roof Rat

Roof rats are moderately sized growing 15-20cms long, they have pointed noses and slender bodies, their tail is naked and longer than the head and body combined, their ears are large and prominent, the fur is dark brown to black on the back and from white or grey to brown on the belly.

 

Compared to the brown rat, it is a poor swimmer, but more agile and a better climber, tending even to flee upwards, more than likely to where it has occupied your roof space.

 

Roof rat droppings may be of similar length but are elongated and pointed, often described as ‘sausage shaped’.

 

Frontline Pest Management - Roof Rat Droppings

 

House Mouse – Mus musculus

Frontline Pest Management - House Mouse

House mice have a body length of 7.5–10 cm and a tail length of 5–10 cm. They vary in colour from white to grey and light brown to black. They have short hair and a light belly. The ears and tail have little hair. The voice is a high pitched squeak.

 

House mouse droppings are blackish, about 6mm long and are elongated and pointed.

Frontline Pest Management - House Mouse Droppings

 

If you think you have a problem with rodents in your property, call Frontline Pest Management today on 3293 4475.

 
 
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