As the weather gets cooler, rodents like mice, rats and squirrels look for warmth inside of homes. In fact, the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) estimated 45 percent of rodent issues occur in the fall and winter. To promote public vigilance against rodents and the health risks they pose, NPMA has declared October 22-28 to be Rodent Awareness Week. Terminix Service, Inc. is joining NPMA in this important effort by educating homeowners on the threat of rodents and how to best keep an eye out for a potential infestation.
“Not only is a rodent infestation a nuisance, but these pests are known to spread a variety of dangerous diseases.” said Dixon Herman, Wildlife Division Manager at Terminix Service, Inc. “It’s important for homeowners to know how to spot a rodent infestation within their homes and to take the necessary steps to avoid these unwanted visitors.”
Common signs of a rodent infestation include:
Droppings & Urine Staining: Fecal pellets are often left behind in places where their food is stored, such as attics, soffits, window dormers, as well as wall cavities and on top of wall beams. Dark colored stains may appear on walls and leak between tongue & groove ceilings.
Gnaw marks: Rodents will chew through air vents, exterior walls, roofs, and fascia boards along the gutterline. Once inside, they are known to bite through walls, wood and wires. The damage to wiring within walls can increase the risk for a house fire.
Nests: Rodents prefer to nest in dark, secluded areas where there is little chance of disturbance. Be on the lookout for shredded insulation, leaves and woody debris inside attics and void spaces. Debris hanging out of an air vent is a dead giveaway you have a problem.
Rub marks: Rodents tend to leave dark grease or dirt marks — from their oily fur — around entry point holes and on posts or columns as they follow a trail in and out of the home between their nest and food.
Strange noises: Scurrying in the walls or in the attic could mean a rodent family is present. Gray squirrels are most active at dawn and dusk whereas flying squirrels are active only at night.
If a rodent infestation is suspected, it’s best to contact an experienced wildlife control professional to assess the situation. For more information on signs of rodents and prevention tips, please visit https://trustterminix.com/for-your-home/wildlife-control/