Finding a new investment property

Finding a new investment property

How To Deal With Rats

Lynn Alexander

In recent years, extra-large 'super rats' have been seen scavenging in urban areas, showing little or no fear of people.  It's thought that the rodents have flourished on a diet of scraps and rubbish discarded by human households.  Rats, 'super' or ordinary, carry harmful diseases and bacteria including E.Coli, Weil's disease, salmonella, cryptosporidiosis and tuberculosis, as well as a collection of mites and fleas.  These creatures are clearly not houseguests anyone would welcome!

So how do you recognise a rat infestation and what can you do about it?  Read on to find out more.

How can you recognise a rat infestation?

Rats are generally nocturnal and secretive, so you won't usually see them during the daytime.  However, you'll know if rats are colonising your property if you see any of the following tell-tale signs:

  • droppings – tapered in shape and dark brown in colour
  • a strong smell of ammonia in cupboards, under sinks etc (rat urine)
  • scratching noises at night under floorboards or in attic space
  • teeth marks on food packaging, wood and plastic
  • holes in sheltered areas, beneath decking, sheds or in a compost heap
  • obvious paths (rat-runs) alongside buildings or fences and through long grass

How to discourage rats

Rats look for shelter and an easy meal.  You can discourage rats by:

  • removing pet food and water bowls from your garden at night
  • ensuring that your rubbish bins have animal-proof lids
  • cleaning up spilled bird seed
  • removing fallen fruit from trees in your garden
  • blocking up gaps in outside walls to prevent rats entering your home
  • locking pet doors at night
  • installing a 'rat-stop' within your sewer pipes to prevent rats from entering

How to get rid of rats

Although you can buy DIY vermin control products, if you think you have rats on your property, the best course of action to take is to call out your local pest control services company.  They will be experienced and properly equipped to deal with a rat infestation and will make sure that the pests are eradicated completely. 

Extermination is usually carried out using traps baited with a slow-acting poison.  A rat eats the bait, retreats to the nest and dies.  Other rats then eat the corpse and are themselves poisoned.  In this way, the whole colony is eventually exterminated.  The pest control company will make several visits to your home in order to monitor the traps and re-bait them, until all signs of rodent activity are gone.

If you find a dead or live rat, do not attempt to touch or remove it unless you are wearing thick gloves and a face mask.  Better still, cover the corpse with an empty box and leave it in situ for the professionals to deal with.

Keep all pets and children away from the bait boxes and areas known to be inhabited by rats until all signs of rat activity are gone, the traps have been removed, and the area has been thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.  Your pest control services company will do this for you.

In conclusion

Rats are definitely not welcome visitors to your home or garden.  If you see signs of rats, call out your local pest control services company, such as Promaster Group, straight away and have the matter dealt with professionally.


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About Me
Finding a new investment property

I don't want to have to work until I'm 60, so I have a very active investment plan for my 20s and 30s. I hope I can retire at 40, so I have been investing in a range of real estate investments to make sure I have a steady stream of income as well as capital growth to fulfill that goal. My blog is all about finding real estate investments to support the goal of early retirement. I explain some of the things to look for when you are comparing different potential real estate purchases and tips on how to increase returns.