Affordable and effective rodent baiting
Ever had a bad nights sleep because something is making noises in the roof space above you, or you’re hearing scraping sounds in the walls? What’s that you wonder? A rat, a possum, a bird? In most cases, it will be a roof rat or more likely, roof rats. These rodents live and nest in your walls and go out into the roof space and into your house, to look for food. Most commonly they seek shelter and food in our homes in autumn and winter but are known to take up residence in the warmer months as well.
Perhaps you’ve encountered a mouse in the house, scurrying past you at infinite speed. The cats excited, he’s found a new plaything, or perhaps he’s too lazy or too proud to move from his comfy sleeping spot. Or maybe you’ve seen evidence of their droppings in your pantry. These small rodents are too, unwanted guests in our homes.
Rodents have prominent incisor teeth which grow continuously and gnawing is a natural and necessary survival behaviour. However, this fetish for chewing wires is a potential cause of costly repairs to electrical wiring in roofs as well as to electrical appliances and can even result in fires.
Rodents contaminate our environment with their urine and droppings and are known carriers of over 50 disease organisms including the causes of plague, typhus and food poisoning. The typical mouse or rat that you see scurrying about in your home has become rather reliant on you for survival. Every last little of scrap of food they can gain from your pantry or garbage helps them survive quite comfortably, thank you. The longer they nest in your home, the greater the danger they pose as their urine and droppings spread a variety of disease carrying organisms that can harm you, your children and your pets.
What you can do
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 to survive and increases the effectiveness of control strategies.
Rodent Proof Your House
Keep them out! This may be simple but 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 doors, overhanging branches, vents and penetrations for plumbing and electrical.
What we can do
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.
There are a variety of traps including sticky boards and snap traps. The placement of these devices is critical to their success. This works well if you don’t have a problem with disposing of the bodies after they have been caught.
Baiting is the most common method used by Pest Technicians. Death occurs from four days after commencement of feeding.
At Frontline Pest Management we prefer to use First Strike Generation soft bait rodenticides, suitable for rats and mice. Deliciously tasty morsels that no rodent can resist, it has unmatched palatability and efficacy. A French innovation, it is the most technologically advanced rodenticide on the market.
- High acceptance by rodents, even when competing food is available.
- Unique package design allows aroma to escape, attracting rodents.
- Single-feed soft bait effective for the most challenging rodent control problems.
- Maintains palatability and integrity in hot environments.
- Contains no wax, enhancing its palatability to rats and mice.
Baits are generally placed in the roof space as this is often where the rodents are living. They will be living and nesting in your walls and coming out into the roof space to forage for food, usually at night time which is why they can cause havoc with sleep problems for people.
With mice, the baits can be placed into lockable mouse stations and placed in locations where there are known mouse traffic areas but out of the way areas such as behind the refrigerator or in a hole in the wall where it has been determined that the mice are travelling through. The lockable mouse stations are particularly effective in those households where there are young children or pets as this is a much safer option.
There are three main rodent pest species found in Australia today.
Norway rat, Common rat, Brown rat, Sewer rat – Rattus norvegicus
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.
Roof rat, Ship rat or Black Rat – Rattus rattus
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’.
House Mouse – Mus musculus
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.