Rat infestation is, unfortunately, an on and off issue at the York region. However, in the past few months, the problem seems to have gotten worse.
A study has been recently conducted to identify 25 of the most rat infested communities in Ontario. Its results were based on the number of residential and commercial rodent treatments performed by local pest control companies from January 1 to December 31, 2017.
Interestingly, four of the communities included in the list are in the York region – Markham at the 19th spot, Richmond Hill and Concord at the 23rd place, and Thornhill at the 24th spot.
Signs of Rat Infestation
When rats gain entry into your homes or businesses, they can potentially contaminate your food or worse, damage your property. Once they are already in, it is difficult to catch them. However, you can still identify signs of them. Below are a few indications of rodent infestation to watch out for:
1. Rodent Droppings
If rodent droppings are still fresh, they are often dark and moist. Over time, they dry out and turn grayish in color. These droppings are usually found in areas near the sink, food packages, or in cupboards.
2. Foul Odor
When rodents have successfully invaded a structure, a foul odor is most likely to be noticed. If you have pet dogs or cats, consider yourself lucky. They are sensitive to this smell that they tend to paw at a particular area they are not previously interested in. The reason they do that is because the area might be home to rats and mice.
3. Rodent Nests
To make their nests, rodents look for piles of trash and other organic waste. If any of these areas are found nearby, and other signs of rodent infestation are present, you might want to take a closer look. There might be rodents living with you.
4. Scratching Noises
Do you think rats are residing in your roof? If you hear scratching noises every night, then they might be telling you they’re present. You can easily identify what type of rat us at home. Black rats are great climbers, which means they can reach your loft or attic spaces. Brown rats, on the other hand, are less adept climbers. That is why they only bustle under floorboards and decks.
As mentioned, brown rats are not proficient climbers. So, some of them excavate and dig burrow systems for shelter, food, and nests. These burrows are often found close to compost heaps or in garages.
Ways to Keep Rodents at Bay
To prevent these rodents from infesting your homes or businesses, here are some tips to take note of:
1. Seal any gaps. If the foundation of your home has holes or cracks, be sure you seal them with a weather-resistant sealant.
2. Do not give them access to water sources. Water is vital for the survival of pests. So, if they see any possible water sources, they’d want to live in them. Do not allow that to happen. Block any access to these sources as soon as possible.
3. Trim the trees in your surroundings. Rodents are easily attracted to untidy landscaping. They like it so much because they make a great hiding spot. Hence, make it a habit to trim regularly.
4. Be proactive. Acting at any sign of the problem can effectively control the issue. If you think the problem is worst enough that you can no longer handle, do not hesitate to seek help from professional and legit pest control companies.
As for why the rodent population seems to increase in number than the usual, the reasons vary. But one thing is for sure. If signs of rodent infestation are detected, act against them.