Have you ever noticed that it isn't winter inside your home during the winter months? Rodent sure have! On a frigid winter day, your home is a lot warmer than it is outside. It's also a lot cooler on a hot summer day. If your home didn't have a single morsel of food in it or a thimble of water to drink, it would still be a great place for rodents to live. So it isn't surprising that rodents prefer to live inside our New England homes rather than outside in a ground hole, log, or tree cavity. This makes them a year-round problem. But it isn't a problem you have to live with. Here are some tips for managing mice and rat problems in every season of the year.
Your exterior walls are the frontlines in the battle against rodents. It is important to do routine inspections to make sure your walls aren't being breached. Check for:
- Gaps around pipes or holes in the seals around your pipes that rodents have made to gain access.
- Holes in door sweeps or weather stripping around your doors.
- Holes in window or door frames.
- Damaged seals around window or door frames that give access to frame voids.
- Broken window panes in basement windows and holes chewed in the interior of frames.
- Unprotected dryer vents.
- Damaged soffits, exhaust pipe gaskets, roof edges and chimney seals.
Some rodents are great climbers and they will use tree branches to get onto your roof and gain access to vulnerabilities on your roofline. Trim tree branches that cross over your roofline to remove this bridge.
Rodents are skittish creatures. They do not like to be out in the open. Therefore, a yard that has more clutter is going to be more attractive than a yard that is free of clutter. There are many objects that rodents will hide in or create a nest in. They'll also hide between and behind objects. Firewood piles, toys, appliances, old cars, cement blocks, etc., are all potential hiding places for rodents. Stow items in a shed, garage, barn or outbuilding if you can. Or, bite the bullet and take the time to cart those items off to the dump.
Raking up fall leaves is an important job in regards to pest control. Leaves can create conditions that can promote pest problems. When it comes to rodents, leaf piles that are created in your yard can be great hiding places and compacted leaves can capture rainwater and make a nice watering hole.
When gutters or downspouts get blocked or broken, it can lead to water issues. Make sure your gutters are in good working condition. This will prevent the dampness that can lead to wood rot and rodent invasion, and prevent drinking puddles from forming.
Best Way to Control Rodents Year-Round
Rodents can be a serious health problem for a family, and they aren't the only pest that can make you sick. Cockroaches spread bacteria, diseases, and parasitic worms. Ticks spread Lyme disease and other dangerous pathogens. Mosquitoes spread viruses. The list of pest threats is quite long. No home should be without a residential pest control plan. If you select a plan that includes coverage for mice and rats, not only will you have protection from the pests that can threaten your health and property, you'll have the best rodent control possible. Rodent control isn't a one-and-done type of process. It requires ongoing inspections, monitoring, and trapping of rodents. This is best done by a licensed professional. A professional is trained in field-tested methods that are effective at detecting the presence of rodents, locating the damage they cause, identifying conditions that are conducive to rodent activity, and the trapping and removal of rodents.
If you live in our Massachusetts service area, we'd like you to know that American Pest Solutions offers residential pest control plans that include rodent control and exclusion. Our service team members are highly trained and experienced at detecting rodents and keeping them out of New England homes. Get started by requesting a free pest control inspection for your home. Life has enough challenges without adding pest-borne illnesses to the mix.