Rodent & Pack Rat Control
Rodents have lived near humans for centuries, causing most of the major plagues in history. Originating in Asia, rats and mice are now a global concern, reproducing at alarming rates, carrying diseases and causing structural damage to homes and businesses.
Even with Tucson’s moderate climate, rodents will move into your home in the cooler months in search of food, water and shelter. While these rodents vary in size and nesting habits, they all share the ability to cause damage to houses and spread diseases such as Hantavirus and other pathogens, transmitted by infested fleas, ticks and feasting insects. Rodents can also infect food supplies, spreading Salmonella to humans.
The most common rodent problems in Southern Arizona can be attributed to:
- Roof rats – also known as the infamous bubonic plague carrying black rats and brown rats, roof rats can be identified by their dark coloring and long, hairless tails. Roof rats can measure 18 inches long, including their tails. Nesting in trees in the wild, as well as wood piles and dense vegetation, roof rats tend to enter houses on tree branches and electrical wiring, infesting attics and upper levels of homes.
- Pack rats – also known as wood rats, are particularly persistent pests in the Tucson area, due to three different species vying for free food, water and shelter in your home or business: Mexican, whitethroat and Stephen’s pack rats. Measuring 6-8 inches in length, pack rats sport fur covered tails, white feet and white underbellies. With an obsession for collecting a variety of objects for their nests, pack rats transmit Hantavirus, a cardio-pulmonary disease spread by inhaling airborne dried pack rat feces and urine particles.
- House mice - smaller than rats, house mice can enter homes through tiny openings, infesting homes in greater numbers than rats. With grey coats and off-white underbellies, house mice foraging in your kitchen can contaminate food.
- Kangaroo rats - Kangaroo rats have pouches, but not for carrying their babies. Their pouches are on the outside of their cheeks and are used for carrying seeds back to their burrows. They don't sweat or pant like other animals to keep cool because that would cause them to lose water from their bodies.
Gnawing to manage their large teeth, rodents can cause house fires by damaging electrical wiring in homes. Most of Southern Arizona rodents are nocturnal, or most active at night and spend the day sleeping. While their nocturnal habits might make rodent infestations difficult to detect, telltale signs include rodent droppings, scratching or scurrying noises in your walls or attic and gnawed dry goods packaging in your pantry.
If Tucson and surrounding area homeowners, suspect that their home has fallen victim to household rodents, they should contact Arizona Pest Control as soon as possible for a free rodent investigation. Reducing rodent populations is especially important for homes with children, as a home with rodents will often provide several opportunities for rodents to transmit life-threatening diseases like Hantavirus, Salmonella, tapeworms, and rat-bite fever, among others. Call AZ Pest Control today at (520)886-7378 for more information.