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What to do if brown rats are infesting your property?
by
Checkatrade

Pest control tips: how to get rid of rats

The common brown rat, also known as the ‘sewer’ rat, is a prevalent vermin found across the whole of the UK. Adaptable, highly mobile and a rapid breeder; they can be difficult to control. They are the largest species of rat in the country, with an average body length of 23cm and often weighing in at over half a kilo. Curious creatures, brown rats have excellent senses of taste, touch and smell. They also have incredible hearing, often using ultrasound to communicate. All of these things combined means they are tough creatures which thrive in a wide variety of habitats.

What problems can a rat infestation cause?

brown rat infesting your propertyDamage to property

Whether they are infesting your home, commercial property or your agricultural spaces, brown rats can be the cause of a great deal of structural damage. Whether they are causing floods by puncturing pipes or chewing on gas pipes, causing dangerous leaks. In some cases, they have even been the cause of serious fires due by gnawing away the insulation around electrical cables. These are all serious issues which can be extremely costly to repair. Knowing how to get rid of rats is vital to prevent any further damage from occurring.

Carriers of disease

Not only can brown rats cause structural damage, but they are also carriers of many horrible diseases which can be passed onto humans. These diseases include Leptospirosis, Salmonella, Listeria, Toxoplasma Gondii and Hantavirus.

Damage to reputation

Particularly for businesses such as restaurants, take-aways and other any business which provide food. Any sign of the presence of rodents is likely to put customers off of dining with you. You must take steps not only to handle any current infestations but to avoid those in the future.

What should you do if your property is infested by brown rats?

Have you noticed any signs of a rat infestation in your property? If you have, you must take action to find out how to get rid of rats. With so many risks associated with having rats around, taking control of their population and contacting a local pest control expert is essential.

Find a local pest control expert

An experienced pest controller will be able to take a look at the area and carry out a survey to understand the cause of the rat infestation and where the rats are getting in from. This site survey will enable them to put together an appropriate plan of action to ensure that the pests are dealt with in the right way. It’s important to look at the bigger picture to understand how and why rats are causing an issue, as well as putting down bait or traps to remove those who are already present. Rats breed quickly, and if not dealt with properly, the situation could quickly get out of hand.

We spoke to Darren at Exterminate Pest Control Services, based in West Sussex, to hear his advice:

“Many people mistakenly believe that rat infestations are caused by a property being dirty or otherwise neglected. Unfortunately, this is not the case and there are many reasons for rats getting into a property. What it comes down to is that they are seeking food and shelter and so anybody could be a victim of their infestation. We would advise anybody with a rat problem to speak to a local qualified pest control expert. They will be able to not only remove the rats already in your property but also look at the bigger picture by inspecting drains and other sources to see if there are other issues present and to understand how they are gaining access to the property.”

How to prevent brown rats?

There is a range of steps you can take to prevent brown rats from infesting your property in the future. Start by eliminating any entry points, by sealing gaps around pipes and under sheds. Rats are agile and only require a gap of 15mm to gain access to your property. You should also remove any potential nesting sites by keeping your garden clean and tidy, cutting back overgrown areas and clearing any debris. If you have a bird feeder, you should also make sure that you don’t overfeed, as excess food lying around can attract rats too.

Take steps to ensure that your drain inspection covers are in good condition and regularly check them for any issues. You should also ensure that any waste bins are closed with the appropriate lids on them.

Although these steps may help to prevent rats from infesting your property, they will not completely eliminate any future infestations from occurring. Rats are hardy creatures which breed rapidly and thrive in such a wide range of habitats that anybody could experience an infestation at any time.

Find a local pest control expert

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