Rodent Control In Hyattsville, MD
If you spot just one mouse or hear a squirrel in your attic, you’d better call the experts. Rats and mice are prolific breeders. They can do significant property damage, contaminate food and spread deadly diseases. Unfortunately, both species are commensal. That’s a fancy way of saying that they like living in close proximity to humans. Squirrels are also destructive and pose health risks to humans.
Disease specialists have sounded the alarm about the growing rat population in U.S. cities. They blame the escalation on a decision made some years ago to reduce federal funding for rodent control. Since then, most city governments have also made cuts.
Mice and rats breed opportunistically rather than seasonally. Litters consist of six to eight offspring on average, but they occasionally have double that number. One female can reproduce up to 10 times a year, and her offspring will reach sexual maturity in a matter of weeks. When you do the math, it’s not hard to see that infestations quickly get out of control.
How Rodents Enter Homes and Businesses
Rodents seek food, water, shelter and materials for building nests. If living conditions are better inside than out, rats and mice flatten their bodies to slip through cracks and holes. An ordinary mouse can get through an opening about the thickness of a pencil. Rainspouts, sewer lines, dryer vents, and laundry drains also provide access for rats and mice. Squirrels are adept at finding their way into attics.
Rats and mice are omnivores. They prefer plant matter, but they’ll eat just about anything. One behavioral study discovered U.S. rats’ fondness for eggs, grease, peanut butter and cooked corn. Pet food is also enticing.
The Risk of Property Damage
Rodents gnaw incessantly because their incisors never stop growing. If they weren’t filed down, incisors would measure 5 or 6 inches. They are hard and sharp enough to destroy wood, cement, brick, plastic, lead, and aluminum.
Good nesting materials include rope, paper, cardboard, and upholstery. Electrical wiring is another favorite, and many fires in homes and businesses are traced to rodent activity. Whatever you do, don’t let rodents get under the hood of your car.
The Threat of Disease
Rodents directly transmit a number of diseases. Dysentery, salmonella and lymphocytic choriomeningitis are especially serious. Some are contracted through contaminated food, food-preparation surfaces, water or soil. Others are introduced by direct contact with rodent waste or inhaling contaminated dust.
Signs of Rodent Activity
Rats and mice are good at staying out of sight, but here are some telltale signs of a problem:
- Brown or black droppings about the size of rice grains
- Worn grass indicating routine rodent travel
- Furrows in your yard
- Greasy rub marks on walls or baseboards
- Scratching noises in the walls or attic
- Nest-making debris
- Damage to garden crops or fruit trees
How We Can Help
Our courteous technicians are not only extensively trained in pest control, but they’re highly skilled in the carpentry and construction trades. They can find vulnerabilities in all kinds of structures. We’ll do indoor treatments until the problem is eliminated and seal entry points to prevent future problems. Protect your home or business from damage and health risks. Call Capitol Pest today for a thorough property inspection and fast, effective solutions.