Mice and rats are common pest problems in Ridgefield. Though historically common in certain urban and rural areas, the last several years have seen an increase in activities like urban farming, which often can include elements such as raising chickens (which requires feed on one end and creates waste on another) and composting (which, if not tended to properly, becomes a grand buffet for a wide variety of pests).
At Aspen Pest Control, we’re committed to ensuring our clients receive the best possible support when it comes to their pest control needs.
What Should I Know About Rodent Infestations In Ridgefield?
Though mice and rats both fall under the rodent category in terms of pests, how they’re handled and exterminated can be very different. Many people assume that the harm caused by mice and rats are from their bites. While a rodent bite is possible, it is, statistically speaking, unlikely. The real harm caused by mice and rats are from the diseases they spread through their droppings and urine.
The diseases they carry can cause major health concerns. Asthma, lyme disease, salmonella, and hantavirus are just some of the illnesses they can spread when their waste becomes airborne. Proper disposal of these materials is crucial to making your home safer when done with the proper equipment.
It’s not just health risks that rodent infestations can cause. In addition to the potential physical and emotional damage of disease, mice and rats can cause a great deal of damage to your home and property. Their teeth are incredibly strong. Their incisors are in a perpetual state of growth (for which their habit of gnawing is a remedy for), and they are strong enough to chew through materials such as drywall, concrete, and even certain types of metal! A rodent infestation also greatly increases your risk of a house fire, as they commonly chew through electrical wiring.
Remember, these animals are very clever, flexible and resourceful. If they gain access to the home, they will do all they can to nest in its most protected areas and gain access to food. Mice, with their diminutive size, have the ability to squeeze through spaces as small as the size of a quarter. They can be found living in just about every nook and cranny around your property in spaces such as cellars, basements, garages, attics, sheds or barns, and in between walls.
Can I Exterminate Mice and Rats In Ridgefield Myself?
Here’s a very general bit of advice from us: mice — if caught early enough — can be somewhat effectively dealt with via at-home DIY methods. (We say “somewhat” because suppressing the number of nesting mice is entirely contingent on your catching and killing them early. And when we say “early,” we mean early. In the right conditions, a nest can grow to some two hundred mice in just ONE MONTH. A single female mouse can have as many as 10 litters of mice (approximately 10 mice per litter) in a single year! As the common saying goes, if you see one mouse, there are definitely more around.
Are you seeing mouse droppings in your home, garage, outbuildings or other areas in or around your property? Are you noticing bite marks or holes in things like birdseed or bags of dog food? Odds are, you have a mouse infestation. Combating an established infestation requires an immense amount of concerted effort in order to rapidly decrease their population and eventually eradicate them altogether.
Rats, on the other hand, are pests we highly recommend that you have a professional extermination team handle as a standard. Why is this? Rats are incredibly intelligent creatures, and are smart enough to understand when there are new elements in their environment — bait and traps, for example — and will actively avoid those things altogether. The Aspen Pest Control team is highly adept at exterminating rats from people’s homes and properties, using baits and traps that closely mimic a rat’s environmental factors so that they not only engage with and consume the bait, but are often driven away from your home before meeting their end.
As a standard consideration of our rodent pest control services, Aspen Pest Control is able to remove mice and/or rats from your property after they’ve passed. We understand that this sort of removal can be more difficult for folks than the removal of many other different types of pests, so we are happy to provide this service as a courtesy to all who choose us for their extermination needs.
How Can I Prevent Future Mice and Rat Infestations In Ridgefield?
Key factors in keeping rats and mice away from your home and property are based on awareness and maintenance. How often are you able to make the time to review the exterior of your home and any other structures on your property? Is everything as clean and secure as it can be? Once your homestead has met this standard, proactively keeping your property pest-free becomes a matter of ongoing maintenance vs. living reactively to any unexpected pest crises.
What to Look for When Reviewing Your Home for Pests
- The foundation — It’s not at all unusual for a home’s foundation to feature small cracks caused by the house settling over the years. Left untreated, these cracks can grow into openings that, in extreme cases, could threaten your home’s stability and commonly create entry ways for rodents and other pests. In addition, check the integrity of any crawl space vents which may need repair or replacement.
- Door and window seals — This is an incredibly common occurrence in homes and other buildings. Extreme temperature changes and age can cause the seals on windows and doors to break, creating openings for pests and a surefire way to negatively impact your home’s energy efficiency. We recommend checking these areas in or around the extreme summer and winter months to confirm things are as they should be.
- Fireplace and chimney — Left unattended, a chimney with an open damper or with old, cracked mortar between the bricks is a perfect doorway for an enterprising rodent. Regularly check your chimney and fireplace so that you can be certain the damper is shut when it is supposed to be and that any broken mortar can be fixed.
- The up and down — Make sure to look in your home’s rafters, eaves and other hard to reach, out of the way areas where mice or other rodents might like to build a nest.
- Utility entry ways — Check the small, unsealed spaces around gas lines, plumbing, electrical lines, and dryer vents for breaches. Though rodent teeth are incredibly strong, materials like steel or copper wool cannot be chewed through, and are a great preventative measure for keeping these pests out of the house.
Remove the Infestation by Removing Their Resources!
It’s great that you’ve reviewed the above and have determined your home is secure. What’s next? Well, we’ve removed many of their means of shelter, now it’s time to focus on limiting their access to food and water — crucial factors in nesting.
- Keep all pet food and lawn seed sealed — Have pets? Love to take care of your lawn? We highly recommend keeping all pet food, bird seed, and lawn seed stored indoors and in tightly sealed containers.
- Keep trash, recycling, and compost bins shut tight — Your trash, recycling, and compost bins are incredibly appetizing to enterprising rodents. Keep them away by keeping these items sealed. Wash your recycling as directed, and if you’re a household that composts, it is recommended these piles are mixed regularly in order to increase decomposition and avoid further rodent infestation.
- Declutter, inside and outside — Lastly, we recommend making sure that the areas near your home or any other buildings on your property are free of excess debris and foliage. Try to avoid storing things like firewood or similar items too close to buildings and structures, as this creates the perfect environment for mice to build nests. The same is true for attic and shed spaces. Regularly tidying these areas reduces the number of opportunities for rodents to nest.
At Aspen Pest Control, we proudly serve the entire Ridgefield and greater southwest Washington and Portland areas. We pride ourselves in being locally owned and operated, with affordable rates and kid and pet-friendly services. We have years of invaluable experience when it comes to rodent control and the results to show it. Call today for your free pest control quote!