Rodent can include house mouse, roof rat, sewer rat and many more. There is a long history of the associations between mice and men. They have featured in many stories, comics and car-toons over the years. Hospitals, Malls, Government and commercial buildings have been victim to their destructive prowess and economic losses. This signifies the importance of rodent control. It is critical to have a good understanding of the external features and behavioral difference between types of rodents for a successful rodent control strategy. For example, Rats are always cautious and careful and are never too curious to go near new things too quickly, on the other hand, mice are very curious creatures and are easily enamored by new things that attract their stomach. The hiding and nesting places are different, entry points and many such things differ. Rats and mice have three basic requirements of food, water and shelter. We have to start from here for an effective rodent control.
1. Damages due to Gnawing: They damage various food and non-food items, spoil the aesthetics and design of home and office decorations as they gnaw and leave behind ragged holes. They cause vast amounts of damage to books, Documents, Food and drink sources, furniture and various electronic equipment. 20% of the world’s food and drink is ruined by mice and rats. The biggest danger posed by rats is that they can chew up your electrical wires and cause irrevocable damage by causing short circuits, are the cause of countless fire related disasters. They can even get into the foundations of buildings by burrowing holes into it and make it weaker. When they eat and shed their fur over food items, they make it unsuitable for consumption by people.
2. Diseases: They are a major threat to human health as they spread various diseases such as Bubonic plague, Rat-Bite-Fever, Leptospirosis, Trichinosis, Jaundice, Rat-Mite-Dermatitis, Salmonella, Pulmonary Fever and Typhoid among people and their pets. They spread mites, tics and lice from one place to another and cause people to fall sick.
Biting: There have been incidences where rodents have bitten newly born baby, injured and handicapped and elderly people in the house, and hospitals.
3. Rat smell: If there is presence of rodents in your home, you will always find bad odor or smell due to rat urine and their droppings.
Rodent Droppings: Rat droppings carry disease germs as well. Most people get Hantavirus infection by inhaling dust contaminated by rodent droppings or by touching rodent urine and then touching their mouth, eyes, or nose.
Rodent Urine: Leptospirosis which is also called Weil’s disease, is a form of a bacterial infection and it is carried most commonly by rats. Mostly, we get this disease while in contact with fresh rain water contaminated with rat urine. Therefore, people who enjoy outdoor activities where freshwater or wet soil are encountered, are more at risk for leptospirosis. This includes swimming, kayaking, rafting and canoeing in freshwater, hiking and camping.
4. Dead Rat: It is a big problem if a rat dies in your surroundings. Firstly, the unbearable stench of the decomposed dead rodents is too bad, what is worse is that this smell can saturate in your home or office permanently if you don’t rectify the problem in time.
Rat Noise: Rodents usually are active at night or very early in the morning, so you probably will hear their activity while you are in bed. You come to know that there are rodents in the false ceiling or walls by skittering or rustling that starts and stops, or continues for several minutes at a time.
Rats and Mice have very weak eyesight and it is even weaker during the day. Humans can see three primary colors, red, green and blue with ease even from a great distance, but rats are colour blind and their perception of depth is zero. This is why rats always move adjacent to walls.
Contrary to vision impairment, their senses of smell, touch and hearing is very strong. Mice use their whiskers to thoroughly understand their surroundings and make a detailed survey of their surrounding area. Their whiskers are much more sensitive than the tips of our fingers.
Gnawing: rodents gnaw on anything that comes to their way (like false ceiling, cartons, packets, containers, bags of grains, bread, biscuits and pet food etc.) and leave behind ragged holes.
House Mouse (Mus musculus): It has pointed snout, large rounded ears, and a hairless tail which is equal to its body’s length. House mice are from 65 to 95 mm long and their tails are 60 to 105 mm long. Their fur colour ranges from light brown to black, and they generally have white belly. Their weight ranges from 12 to 30 grams. House mice usually run or stand on all four legs, but while eating, they balance themselves on their hind legs with additional support from the tail – a typical behaviour which is called as “tripoding”. House mice are primarily nocturnal and terrestrial. Nervously active, they are agile climbers and jumpers and are also good swimmers. They make their nests in any protected place, contaminate food and damage your property.
Roof Rat (Rattus rattus): It is also known as Black Rat or ship rat. The tail is longer than its body (longest tail amongst rats of our concern) and have large eyes and ears, a pointed nose. Roof rat droppings are soft and moist when fresh but their old droppings are hard and dried. The droppings usually measure about half an inch and have pointed ends. Roof rats prefer to make its nest /shelter in the upper parts of buildings, such as false ceiling, trees, lofts, dense cover and shadows of thick shrubbery, vine covered trees, power lines and fences. behind walls, above ceilings, and in chimneys. They are also likely to be found infesting basements, areas under buildings, and in sewers.
Sewer or Norway Rat (Rattus norvegicus): It is also known as the brown rat. It is a brown or grey rodent with a head and body length of up to 28 cm or 11 inches long, and a tail slightly shorter than its body and head length put together. It weighs between 140 to 500 grams. Brown rats dig well, and often excavate extensive burrow systems. The brown rat is a true omnivore and will consume almost anything, but cereals form a substantial part of its diet. Sewer rat makes a new burrow adjacent to an object or structure in order to provide proper strength to its burrow as sturdy roof.
Greater bandicoot rat (Bandicota indica): It can grow to about 27–29 cm without including the tail which can grow to 28 cm. It has a dark gray-brown upper parts with a profusion of long, black hair. Large, aggressive bandicoot rats erect their guard hairs on their backs and emit grunts when disturbed. If caged with other bandicoots, it is likely to fight to death within a few hours. They ‘re so aggressive that sometimes dogs and cats are afraid of these bandicoot rat, they occupy the outskirts of human dwellings such as compounds and gardens and are commonly found near garbage bins. They are also sometimes found on the roadside. Sometimes they get run over by cars and die on the road. Burrowing habits cause great damage to grounds and flooring, as they can also tunnel through brick and masonry. Their characteristic large burrows give away their presence. They are not fastidious eaters, feeding on household refuse, grain, and vegetables, and are very serious pests in poultry farms. They are also a carrier for many diseases.
Lesser bandicoot rat (Bandicota bengalensis): They are also known as Indian Mole Rat. Their length can be up to 40 cm long (including the tail). They are considered a serious pest for the the cereal crops and gardens. They emit piglike grunts when attacking. The head-body length is around 250 mm, and the uniformly dark tail is shorter than the head-body length. These rats are also known to inhabit houses in villages and are particularly aggressive when threatened.
When, you can’t see the rodents but every day you find their droppings or foul odour.
Every morning, you find half eaten tomatoes or damaged bread and biscuit packets.
You hear strange sound usually at night, which is combination of squeaking, hissing, chattering, scratching, gnawing, and rustling sounds. It disturbs your sleep and you are not sure how to stop it.
You notice that there are greasy smears on tile floor, around the holes or chimney or exhaust fans, on the white paints on walls and you don’t know what caused those ugly black smears?
When you find nauseating smell as if rat has died somewhere but don’t know where?
You have bought rat baits from market and you find that rats are not eating it and your problem only increasing.
You have bought rodent glue traps from market and you find that rats are not getting stuck or trapped on it but they are strong enough to run over it.
If you are willing to take the pain of doing it yourself, we can certainly help you with right Rodent chemical, equipment and guidance to do it at your own convenience and privacy.
You can fill up the Rodent DIY information form and we will contact you with all the help, suggestion and estimates. A DIY kit can include rodent glue traps, pre baiting material, baiting material, cages, rodent bait station, dead rodent disposal kit and last but not the least guidance to do the rodent control yourself.
For Rodents, the recommended chemicals are as follows:
Klerat Wax blocks known as 0.005% Brodifacoum
For further details on above chemicals, popular brands available in India, how do their bottle and packet look like, refer to our Chemical Section on Rodent control.
Bitterant 1% (non-pesticide bittering agent): bitteRTM from UPL is a powerful and effective rat repellent spray. Its unique bitterant formulation delivers an intense sensation to the gnawing rodent and compels it to stay away. Rats cannot stop gnawing and the bitteRTM formulation uses this behavior to devise an effective repellant.
Odorless rodent repellent
Eco-friendly: No organic solvents used. Safe for humans
Sticks on most of the surfaces easily
Creates uniform coating
Application does not require any training
Best way to prevent the rodents is by using the 4Ds - Deny Entry, Deny Food & Water, Deny Shelter and Destroy but responsibly.
Seal each and every hole that you find inside and outside the home to prevent their entry.
Install door sweeps on exterior doors
Inspect items such as boxes, grocery bags and other packages brought into the home.
Routinely inspect the loose soil or ground below the shrubberies, around the building periphery, near drains for rodent burrows. Block them or get them treated by licensed pest control operator.
The do’s and don’ts to follow when you notice that you have a Rodent problem
If you have seen a rat in a room, please close the door and if there is a gap below the door, put a door mat or towel or paper sheet to block it so that the rat doesn’t come out of that room to other parts of the house.
If you have noticed a rat trapped inside a carton or a wardrobe and it has no way out, put some rodent glue traps at the exit point so that rat gets stuck.
Call your pest control operator and don’t panic.
Don’t use rodent baits directly by yourself without expert guidance. If at all, you wish to do it yourself, get a DIY kit for rodents and follow the instructions. It will guide you to identify the rodent species troubling you and then the right tools and chemicals to be used in the right proportion in a systematic manner.