How to Get Rid of Roof Rats

By Ann Hills / a couple of years ago

Have you ever found gnaw marks, torn wiring, or hollowed-out fruits in your home lately? Perhaps you have spotted grease marks, droppings, or urine stains? What about dead rats or a lingering, nasty rodent odor? Well, you might have some uninvited guests in your home; roof rats. Before these pesky intruders ruin your property and put your family’s health at risk, follow this comprehensive guide to get rid of them fast!

Keep Everything Clean

Sanitation is the first and most important step to get rid of your roof rat problem. Roof rats thrive wherever food, water, and a nesting site are accessible for them. Although they have an affinity for fruits and seeds, they will eat practically anything. If you have any leftovers or any food remains in your trash, expect them to devour it. Here are some tips on how to keep your home clean and your roof rat-free:

  • Keep your trash cans closed at all times
  • Store your food in a tightly sealed container
  • Keep your home clutter-free by removing cardboard, paper, and the likes
  • Prune shrubs, grass, and trees regularly
  • Remove any stagnant water
  • Stack firewood and lumber away from walls and fences
  • Discard piles of rubbish properly
  • If you have any trees on your property, pick up the fallen fruit or nuts right away
  • Make sure not to leave pet food or bird feeders outside overnight

Seal Entry Points

Roof rats usually start invading your home by entering through gaps or holes, utility lines, and voids along your roofline. Roof rats can be a recurring problem if their point of entry remains open. To prevent these pests from invading your home, fill small holes with steel wool and caulk. For larger holes, fill them with cement, metal sheeting, or hardware cloth.

Roof rats are roof rats for a reason. As your home’s roof is the most popular entryway for these pests, remember to always check for any holes in the rafter, gables, and eaves. If there are more than enough holes for you to handle, perhaps it’s time for a roof upgrade. Experts from Point Roofing suggest that if you haven’t replaced your roof in a few years, you might need to have it updated, especially if you are trying to increase your property’s appraisal value. Nobody wants a worn-out roof or a rodent-infested home, after all.

Use Baits And Traps

One way to reduce the number of these annoying creatures in your home is to set up baits and traps. You can use peanut butter, dried fruits, and nuts as bait. Try to place these traps in places near burrows, crevices, or locations where you spotted their droppings and urine. Inspecting your property regularly for their nesting sites or regular pathways can help you select the best spot to set your traps.

If you are using snap traps, take note of these reminders:

  • Set a pre-baiting period of two to three days to get the rats used to eating in that location
  • Wear gloves when setting up your bait
  • Secure your traps with duct tape, rubber bands, or screws
  • Make sure to only keep them out at night if you are setting your trap outdoors

If you plan to use glue board traps, keep these in mind:

  • Only use glue board traps indoor
  • Keep glue board traps away from children and pets
  • Replace glue board traps regularly as it loses its effectiveness over time

If you opt for poison baits, here are some reminders:

  • Always keep poison baits away from children, pets, and non-target animals
  • Replace moldy or stale poison baits regularly as roof rats will not feed on them
  • Poison baits come with specific instructions, so follow them carefully
  • Keep placing poison baits until you no longer see traces of roof rats in your home

After setting up your baits and traps, it is very important to dispose of rodent carcasses immediately. Never pick up rodent carcasses with your bare hands. Always make sure to wear gloves and place the carcasses in a disposable bag. Lastly, throw away both the gloves and disposable bags in a secure outdoor garbage container.

These little rascals can be a real nuisance if you’re not careful. As long as you keep your home sanitary and in check, roof rats will no longer be a problem. However, if you have already tried getting rid of them on your own to no avail, it is best to contact pest control services right away. As much as possible, act immediately, for your own health, safety, and peace of mind.

About the author

Ann Hills

My name is Ann Hills and I am a food blogger and a yoga teacher. When I was a child, I often got around my mother and watched her cooking in our kitchen. My mom always says to me that: “Kitchen is the heart of any home”. I strongly believe in her saying that’s reason why I prefer spending my money to make my home better than other stuff.

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