Local and National Rodent ControlIs there a rodent infestation in your home that you cannot stop? Learn your rodent control and extermination options.
There are more than 2,000 types of rodents in the world. Some are tiny, and some are quite large. In fact, the capybara is the world's largest rodent. It is native to Australia and can weigh as much as nearly 150 pounds. If you have a rodent infestation in your home, you are probably dealing with a species far small, but small rodents are still quite destructive and dangerous.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), you can potentially contract up to 35 different diseases from the most common house rodents, mice and rats. Those diseases can happen through direct contact in the form of bites. However, you are also susceptible to certain diseases when you touch anything with rodent feces or urine on it. You are also at risk from rodents because they can chew up your belongings, and even your walls and electrical wiring. Every year, many house fires are caused by rodents, including squirrels, mice, and rats. That is why you must control a rodent infestation as soon as you discover it. Below is information on how to select a rodent removal service.
Signs You Have Rodents
The most obvious indicator of a rodent infestation is seeing mice, rats, squirrels, or other rodents in your home. However, you can't always see the rodents themselves right away. If you are not positive you have rodents, there are signs that can help you verify an infestation. Look for rodent droppings. Also, check to see if any walls, doorways, or personal items have been chewed or moved. Rodents also have certain oils on their fur that can rub off as they pass by. Check for oil streak marks indicating a “rodent highway” in a certain area of your home. If you do have rodents, a professional rodent control or extermination service may assist you in one or more of the following ways.
Every pest control service begins with a property inspection. The pest control specialist can help you identify access points where rodents are entering your home. He or she must inspect the inside and outside of the structure. Using signs of activity, such as rodent droppings, he or she can tell you exactly where the weak points of the structure are.
Exclusion is a process of blocking the ways rodents enter a structure. Doing so keeps another infestation from occurring after existing rodents are removed. Small rodents, such as mice can squeeze into tiny gaps and cracks. Filling cracks and gaps in seals off their entry points. The exclusion process may also involve putting caps on items like old pipes and chimneys.
Bait and Trap Setting
There are several types of baits and traps a rodent removal service may use. You must make sure you select a service that offers the form of baiting or trapping you want. Some options include:
Poisoned Food Pellets
Aerosol Spray Poison
Certain methods may not suit your situation. For example, aerosol poisons can harm your pets or children. Other methods present different potential pitfalls, such as a rodent becoming poisoned but not dying until it is inside one of your walls. That can cause an unpleasant odor that may last for several days.
You must also understand that some infestations require monitoring and additional treatments. For example, a company that uses traps may set a particular amount and have to return the next day to check them. Then they may need to set additional traps. Regular rechecks cost money and may take time from your busy schedule. Talk to your pest control company and inquire about their methods to make sure you understand all risk and inconvenience factors.
Outdoor Environment Control
Some rodent control companies offer outdoor environment control to prevent rodent infestations. That process may involve removing plants near the outside of the building that are attracting rodents. It may also involve treating the outside of your home with chemicals or other products designed to deter rodents. If the latter is a service provided by your chosen company, make sure the products they intend to use are safe for wildlife, pets and children in your area.
Finding a Rodent Control Company
When seeking a rodent control company, one method is to ask friends, family members, or neighbors. You may find you know someone who already uses an excellent rodent control service. Most local areas have many pest control services available. To find a local company, you can also check your local newspaper or local online forums. There are also several national rodent control companies offering services nationwide. Among them are:
Orkin – In business since 1901, Orkin has over 400 locations across several countries. The company also offers supportive services for preventing future pest problems, such as insulation replacement.
Terminix – Terminix became the first company to patent a termite control method in 1932. Today, the company handles all sorts of infestations, including rodents and wildlife.
Ehrlich – Although it presently only serves 20 U.S. states, Ehrlich is rapidly gaining a reputation for excellence in pest control. In addition to bug and rodent removal, the company also offers snake removal. Since rodents often attract snakes, the two services go hand-in-hand.
Massey Services – Massey Services operates primarily in the southeast portion of the United States. The company is known for providing rodent and other pest control for clients with tight budgets.
Estimating Rodent Control Costs
Many companies charge approximately $500 for full rodent removal service. Companies like Massey offer discount rodent removal. Such companies typically charge closer to $200 for initial service. However, there is no exact amount you can plan to pay ahead of time. Too many factors determine the cost, such as:
Size of Property
Specific Control Method Used (Traps and Poisons)
Number of Required Follow Up Visits
Related Services Provided (Sealing Holes, Removing Plants Etc.)
Preventing Future Infestations
You must typically use a professional service to get rid of large rodent infestations. However, there are steps you can take after the fact to help reduce the chances of a new infestation occurring. Those steps primarily involve cleaning the inside and outside of your home. Store food in sealed containers, and invest in trash cans with lids. Also, make sure you quickly take care of any new entry points that develop, such as holes in window screens. That way mice and rats will stay outside where they belong.