Rats are a rodent which live very close to man. They are found in sewers, drains, sheds, farms anywhere they can find food, water and shelter. They can grow up to an average of 40cm in length and the tail is generally shorter than the head and the body and they weigh between 350 and 500 gram.
A rats preferred food is cereal but they are omnivorous. They eat around 30 gram of food a day and rats unlike mice are more selective in what they consume but will eat a wide variety of food. A rat can get through tiny gaps and once they enter a property they can cause a nuisance and can be very damaging which can include gnawing through wires, wood, food, rubbish. They are a danger to health and have also been known to cause fires through chewing electrical wires.
There are several steps you can take to prevent rats from entering your home:
- Inspect the exterior of your home for any holes or gaps that rats could use to enter, and seal them with caulk or steel wool. Pay particular attention to areas around pipes, utility lines, and vents.
- Keep trees and bushes trimmed and away from the house, as rats can use them to climb onto the roof or into upper-level windows.
- Store food in airtight containers and dispose of garbage regularly to remove any potential food sources for rats.
- Keep your yard clean and free of clutter, as rats often nest in piles of debris.
- Install door sweeps on all exterior doors to prevent rats from entering through gaps under the doors.
- Use rodent-proof trash cans with tight-fitting lids to prevent rats from getting into your garbage.
- If you have a compost bin, make sure it is securely covered and the compost is properly turned to discourage rats from feeding on it.
- If you have a bird feeder, consider moving it away from the house or using a squirrel-proof feeder to prevent rats from feeding on the seed.
- Consider using rat traps or rodenticides to help control the rat population around your home. However, be sure to use these products carefully and in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions to avoid harm to pets or other non-target animals.