Guaranteed Rat Extermination Services in Houston, TX
Are there damaged food packages in your pantry? Do you hear scurrying sounds inside your house at night? These are signs of a rat and mouse infestation. Reach out to Stampede Pest Control right away for expert assistance. We can quickly and safely remove current rodent problems as well as help to prevent future infestations. Our Houston rat and mouse exterminators are the best in the business and we guarantee all services.
Mice and rats can cause serious, expensive problems to your property. They can cause fire hazards by chewing through wiring, spread infected fleas and ticks, and they’re just plain gross. Let us help you protect your home from rodents all-year-round. Call us now for a free quote.
Let’s Talk About Rats and Rodents
Rats reproduce all-year-round. They breed easily, most especially in favorable, warm climates like that of the Houston area. Females can produce up to 5 litters every year, each with 7 to 14 pups.
Rats have a lifespan of about 3 years. However, due to species conflicts and predators, most of them only live for about a year.
These pests can enter homes and businesses through openings as small as half an inch. The most common entry points are holes around roofs, chimneys, and vents.
Diet and Habitat
Food preferences may vary per rat species. However, in general, rats eat basically anything when hungry. In the wild, they consume plants, seeds, and fruits. Indoors, they eat anything and everything they come across.
There are three primary things that can attract rats to your property – shelter, water, and food. They are highly adaptable creatures and can thrive anywhere near food sources.
Rats prefer to nest in secure, warm areas with convenient access to water and food. They build their nests near food sources using shredded materials like fabrics and newspapers. Their nests can be found in several places around your home. Always check your attic, wall cavities, and under and behind appliances.
While rats are considered pests, they are key players in our ecosystem. They help maintain ecological balance. They serve as a good food source for many animals such as snakes and birds of prey. Moreover, they help in spreading seedlings and plants across different areas.
Common Types of Houston Rodents
Deer mice are about 3 to 4 inches long, with pointed noses and big, black eyes. They are uniquely bicolored. The upper part of their bodies is reddish-brown, while their feet and underbellies are white. These rodents don’t live past a year in the wild but can live up to 8 years in captivity.
These tiny pests love eating seeds, nuts, insects, animal matter, and other plant products. Their diet is not limited to these, though. Deer mice also engage in coprophagy, or the act of eating their own feces.
Outdoors, they live in hollow logs, tree holes, or piles of rocks. Once they find their way inside homes, they look for dark, warm areas like attics and basements. If you think your house is infested with deer mice, try looking for their nest in undisturbed spaces. These are usually made from fur, seeds, paper, and weeds.
House mice vary in color, from black and light brown to grey. These mice have pointed muzzles, and their tails are around 2 to 4 inches long. Just like deer mice, they prefer to consume fruits and nuts, but will generally eat any available food source.
House mice love to eat food items that are high in carbohydrates, including chocolates and other sweets. They love spending time under cabinets, under kitchen appliances, and other secluded areas. As for nesting areas, basements and attics are considered hotspots.
These pests gnaw not only furniture pieces but also electrical wires. Exposed, chewed wires can spark, and cause a fire. For this reason, it’s crucial to call reliable pest control specialists the moment you suspect an infestation.
Black Rat / Roof Rat
Despite its name, black rats range from light brown to black in color, with a much lighter underside. They have slender bodies and big ears, with tails longer than their bodies.
Black rats are often found outdoors, living in farmlands or fields. Their diet? Fruits, seeds, nuts, and other vegetation. Though, when food is no longer available, they find their way inside homes and businesses. This is dangerous since black rats urinate and produce droppings often. They contaminate everything they come into contact with. Even if you live on the upper floors, you’re not safe from these unwanted guests, since they are excellent climbers. In fact, they’re also referred to as roof rats, because of their tendency to seek shelter in a structure’s upper levels.
Did you know this rat is capable of squeezing itself through a hole about the size of a quarter? They are about 7 to 10 inches long and weigh about 5 to 9 ounces. These pests are definitely bigger than a quarter! Now, how do they do this? Simple. They gnaw and chew at smaller holes until they’re large enough for them. Then, they wiggle their way in. Black rats have incisors that grow about 4 inches each year. They manage their growth by continuously chewing on things.
Norway rats also referred to as sewer rats are heavily bodied animals with blunt muzzles. They are 7 to 9 inches long, brown in color, with scattered black hairs and white to gray undersides.
These are social pests, often living close to one another. Thus, if you notice that there is one burrow in your yard, more likely, there are others nearby. They build nests near garbage cans, riverbanks, woodpiles, and under concrete slabs.
Norway rats normally live in farmlands and fields, but enter homes around fall when water and food sources become scarce outdoors. Once they manage to get inside, they nest in basements and the lower floors of buildings. Although they prefer to live on lower levels, they also occasionally live on attics and other high areas.
These pests eat several types of food but prefer carbohydrates and proteins. Believe it or not, food items in typical household garbage cans can provide these rats with a balanced diet. Apart from eating cereal grains, meat, and fruits, they also kill and consume small insects, birds, mammals, and reptiles.
Rats Vs Mice
Your pest control efforts will be most successful if you fully understand the difference between these two pests. They may look similar, but there are lots of key differences when it comes to physical appearance. Mice measure around 12 to 20 cm, including their tails. Rats, on the other hand, are medium- to large-sized rodents. They can grow to be as long as 40 cm.
Moreover, mice have bigger ears and eyes relative to their heads. They have sharper, narrower muzzles, as well as thin, slightly hairy tails. Rats’ have bigger muzzles, and thicker, scaly tails. Their ears are also smaller relative to their heads. Compared to mice, rats have coarse fur and bigger feet.
Whether your property is infested with rats or mice, calling Stampede Pest Control is the best solution for an immediate and lasting solution. Schedule an inspection now.
Dangers Of Rat & Rodent Infestations
Annoying scratching, squeaking noises at night? It’s possible that there’s a rat infestation in your home. Ignoring the presence of these pests can lead to container and food contamination, as well as fire hazards and structural damages. They also carry the following diseases:
- Salmonella (Salmonellosis)
- Lyme disease
- Bubonic plague
These diseases are transmitted through rat bites or scratches. You can also get it by ingesting contaminated food or water, inhaling contaminated dust, and direct contact with an infected rat.
Rodent & Rat Removal in Houston
Step 1: In-depth Inspection
The very first thing our team does is to check the rodents’ main entry points and nesting areas. We’ll inspect your home’s exterior walls, attics, roofs, and pipelines. We’ll also check your foundation for holes and gaps, as well as identify trees where rats can climb to gain access to your property’s higher levels.
Step 2: Rat and Rodent Exclusion
The second step is to seal every potential opening and entry point. We use quality steel wire mesh to seal holes, so rodents can’t bite through or tear it apart.
Step 3: Extermination
Our pest control specialists will set up traps inside and outside of your home. From glue and snap traps to bait boxes, we’ll make sure that your property is fully protected from rodents. These solutions are also non-toxic and safe for pets.
Step 4: Post-treatment Sterilization and Disinfection
Rodent droppings, nesting materials, and urine can potentially make you and your whole family sick. We’ll eliminate these contaminants to ensure your safety. Our team uses non-toxic decontamination chemicals to get rid of harmful viruses and bacteria.
Step 5: Repair and Replacement
Rodent control doesn’t stop at decontamination. We recommend that you repair or replace the damaged parts of your home caused by the rodent infestation.
Take away bird feeders.
Apart from feeding birds, these can also cater to several rodents, and encourage them to build nests nearby.
Don’t leave your pet’s food outdoors, most especially at night.
Never leave leftovers outside. Rodents are attracted to any kind of food whether it’s for you, your dog, cat, or bird.
Ensure that your food products are sealed and placed in rodent-safe areas.
Organize your pantry regularly. See to it that food items are in glass or metal containers with tight-fitting lids.
Sealing off all potential entry points.
Sealing gaps and holes around your property will help lessen rat entry opportunities.
Never leave food scraps in your garbage bins overnight.
Just like food products, your garbage cans must have securely fitted lids. This will stop rats, mice, and other pests from feeding on its content.
Try to lessen the amount of trash and clutter in your home.
Regularly clean your home and outdoor areas. Less clutter and dirt means lesser hiding places for rodents.
Check your home for leaking pipes or taps. Monitor warm and moist areas like the garage, garden shed, or laundry rooms.
Leaking pipes and other moist areas can provide pests the water supply that they need to survive.
Call a professional rodent control team.
Intercept and eliminate rat activities early on with the help of professional pest control treatments.
What are the different types of rodents?
There are more than 2,000 species of rodents all over the world. The most common types include gerbils, guinea pigs, hamsters, mice, and rats.
How would I know what type of rodents are invading my property?
Do you hear squeaking, scuttling sounds in your attic and within your walls? If yes, check your attic and other undisturbed areas for urine stains and droppings. Are the droppings small? Most likely, you have a mice or rat infestation. Large droppings usually come from possums, raccoons, or squirrels.
How do rats make their way to my attic?
Rats can easily squeeze themselves in the smallest holes to gain access inside your property. They can conveniently chew their way in, most especially if your home is made from lightweight materials.
What types of rats are in Texas?
Roof rats and Norway rats are both indigenous to Texas. Don’t be surprised if you see them around your basement, garage, or under your foundation. These pests also love to climb trees and explore drain pipes.
How do rats spread disease?
For rats, your entire home is the bathroom, including your pantry, insulation, and kitchen countertops. This is a huge problem since these pests are also carriers of many diseases like hantavirus and leptospirosis. Their urine and droppings can easily contaminate your food, and get you and your family sick.
Looking For a Rat or Rodent Exterminator? Contact Us Today!
A rat infestation that is left untreated can quickly worsen. You need to act now to avoid serious structural and health risks. Let the experts at Stampede Pest Control handle your pest problem, so you don’t have to. We have more than 10 years of experience in providing pest control services in Houston and the surrounding areas. When it comes to 100% customer satisfaction, you can depend on us. Call us now for a free, honest quote.
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