All the signs are there: torn (or knawed) packages in your pantry, scurrying sounds in the walls, and droppings. Yes, you have a rodent problem. Since even a single rodent can become dozens in matter of weeks, it is important to get help as soon as you notice the signs of a rodent in your home.
Does it really matter whether you are dealing with mice or rats? Yes, it does. For one thing, the tactics for getting rid of them are different. This is because mice and rats have very different behaviors, food preferences and habits. Either way, they have to go — and quickly.
The first step to eradicating a rodent problem is figuring out which one you are dealing with — a mouse or a rat. This can be done by looking at several factors:
What They Look Like
Since both rats and mice are nocturnal, the odds of actually seeing either is slim. But if you are lucky enough to catch a quick glimpse, look for these common differences:
- Size: the average house mouse is only about seven inches long; but a rat can be three times that size.
- Coloring: most mice are brown with a bit of graying. Rats, on the other hand, can be any shade of brown with some (or all) black.
- Fur: Rats have longer, rougher and shaggier fur.
- Ears: mice generally have large ears that look a bit disproportional to their bodies. Rats sport short ears.
- Snout: mice have a pointed snout when compared to a rat’s blunter one.
Where They Live
Mice like to stay close to their food source. So, you are likely to find them near the kitchen – even taking up residence in your cupboards or pantry. Rats, on the other hand are burrowers, and tend to live under the house, burrowing their way in to grab a snack and leave again.
How They Act
When trying to decide if you have a mouse or rat problem, consider these pests behavior. Mice are curious creatures and tend to check out anything new. That is why they are commonly caught in traps. Their curiosity can’t keep them from seeing what that new object (with food) has to offer.
Rats, on the other hand, are much more cautious. Putting out a trap (even with food) is going to put a rat on alert. A better tactic is to put a trap in an area for a few days without setting it. This allows the rat to get used to it being there, so that once you do set it, he will be more likely to get caught.
What Their Droppings Look Like
One of the best ways to determine which rodent pest you are dealing with is to take a closer look at their droppings. Mice leave behind rod-shaped droppings (and more of them), while rats tend to void less, leaving behind blunted capsule-like droppings.
It doesn’t matter which type of rodent you are dealing with. Quick action is necessary to avoid becoming inundated with these pests. To get rid of rodents quickly, call in the expert crew from Perfection Pest Control for an evaluation and an individualized pest control strategy.
A black widow is one of the most dangerous spiders living in the United States. The venom it releases when it stings can cause severe muscle pain, breathing problems, and nausea. A bite may even cause death if medical treatment is not sought out. Because they are so dangerous, you want to do all you can to prevent them from infesting your home or the area near your home. Knowing what these pests look like can help you determine if you may have a black widow infestation.
The Identifying Features of a Black Widow
Black widows are most often characterized by their dark black color with bright red hourglass shape on their abdomen. However, not every black widow is red and black. Some can be brown with an orange hourglass shape on their abdomen. It is also important to note that young black widows may not always be dark in color. They can be a light brown color, orange or even white. They still have the noticeable shape of two triangles connecting to make an hourglass though.
Black Widow Habits
Black widows spin irregular looking webs that are close to the ground. These webs are often in secluded areas that do not receive a lot of foot traffic. If you see webs low to the ground that do not look like a traditional neat spider web, you may be dealing with a black widow's nest.
Where a Black Widow Prefers to Live
Black widow spiders do not like to be bothered. As such, they tend to find protected areas to build their web and create nests in. These are likely to be either dense or cluttered areas, with little foot traffic. This allows them to hide and live their life unbothered.
How to Prevent Black Widow Infestations
Since these pests can be so dangerous, you want to take action to help prevent black widow infestations. One of the best ways you can prevent an infestation is to seal all outdoor points of entry into your home. This is not only important to keep black widows out, but also to keep out other pests, including ants and cockroaches. Another tip is to keep your home clear of debris and clutter. You do not want to give black widows a place to hide. Lastly, black widows like to eat pests that they can catch in their low-hanging webs, such as ants, cockroaches and beetles. Having your home treated for all of these pests takes away the black widows food source, which may deter them from making your home their home.
A black widow is not a pest that you want hanging around near your home. If you see webs close to the ground or have seen a black widow, you will want to get your home treated or sprayed. This helps to get rid of one or more black widows that may be living in your home. At Perfection Pest, we want to help you keep all types of pests out of your home, including black widows. Contact us today to schedule your service.