Abbey Pest Control

Posts tagged “Rats”

With the persistent wind and rain affecting Berkshire over the past two weeks, we thought we would take the time to do a short blog on how the weather can affect certain pests. With storm Ciara and storm Dennis battering Reading, causing flooding in Arborfield, Wokingham, Theale, Swallowfield and surrounding areas these conditions can encourage rodents into your home or business; much like us rodents don’t like being out in the cold and wet weather and if they can find a way inside you may be sharing your home will some very unwelcome guests. 
 
Rodents like rats and mice will use lower level entry points, such as a broken or missing airbrick to get underneath a garage door. We are currently dealing with a property where rats have gained access through a small gap under the garage door and have built a nest underneath the homeowners nice, warm boiler which unfortunately is also in the garage. This has led to them exploring their new surroundings and finding access inside the house following the network of pipes leading from the boiler; with the weather being cold and wet this is a perfect environment for them to set up a nest, they had access to grass seeds and other plant material to feed on while having a lovely warm area in which to nest in. 
Drain proofing in Charvil
With plenty of rodent jobs keeping us busy here at Abbey Pest Control we thought we’d do a quick blog on how you to spot signs of rodent activity within your home or business. 
 
One of the first signs a customer notices are unusual sounds around the home, usually in the walls, ceiling voids or in the loft. These distinctive scratching sounds are a common indicator that you may have rats, mice or squirrels in your home. Sometimes the sounds can be attributable to birds, particularly in the loft, which is why it’s important to fully survey all sites and correctly identify the type of pest before beginning a treatment plan. 
 
Another indicator of a rodent infestation is the presence of faeces or droppings; these will be found in the same places the noises are being heard. Mice usually leave droppings scattered around on the same routes they use to traverse your home whilst rats tend to favour specific areas to leave their droppings. With a single rat capable of producing up to 40 droppings in a single night these preferred locations can begin to emit a rather unpleasant odour. 
Signs of rat activity in Reading
At Abbey Pest Control we are mostly dealing with wasp nests removals as we reach the height of the busy wasp season, however we are still finding rodents are making a nuisance of themselves in some homes across Berkshire. 
 
With growing populations of rats, mice and grey squirrels around Berkshire and the surrounding areas there are still plenty of rodents looking for homes and food. 
 
We are currently dealing with a number of rodent jobs, from a grey squirrel building itself a new nest in a loft in Lower Earley to rats gaining entry into a kitchen from a burrow under a patio in central Reading. 
Quick video of the first night I had some traps down in a property in Thatcham just outside Newbury in Berkshire, in the video you can see how nervous the rat is around the traps, this is known as neophobia and is common amongst rats it basically means an extreme or irrational fear or dislike of anything new or unfamiliar. This is extremely common when dealing with a rat infestation but with the help of motion cameras like the ones we use helps us in determining where is best to place traps to have a successful treatment. 
A collection of rodents caught on our motion cameras, no footage of any rodents being caught in traps. 
These videos have been taken from all over the Reading and Berkshire area and also includes a couple of surprise guests at the end. 
When it comes to pest control there are 2 different methods that a pest controller can use to eradicate a rat, mouse or squirrel infestation: toxic and non-toxic. The toxic method is the use of poisons to kill off the rodents in or around a building, the toxic approach can sometimes be a quick solution but also comes with the most risk, these risks can be: 
 
- Rats or mice dying within wall cavities and underneath floors. This can lead to maggots, flies and unpleasant smells as the rodent may be inaccessible. These smells and side effects can last a few weeks and create a nuisance for the home or business owner. 
 
- Poisoned rodents can also die outside or within reach of other animals. This can risk poisoning a non-target animal, mainly birds of prey, foxes or even domestic pets. Any toxic treatment carried out by a pest control technician needs to be monitored regularly to look for carcases, especially if the treatment is external as the rodents need to be disposed of appropriately. 
Rats in Shinfield, Reading, Wokingham, Newbury and Thatcham
The brown rat is the most common rat in the UK and goes by several different names including common rat, street rat, sewer rat, Hanover rat, Norway rat, Norwegian rat, Parisian rat, water rat or wharf rat. 
 
The brown rat originated in China but is now the most common rat globally and can be found on nearly all continents. The brown rat is generally found living among humans, more so in urban areas where it can easily gain access to properties and food sources. The brown rat will feed on anything from food found within your home, to waste left outside for bin collections, food left out for birds and even dog or cat faeces. 
Rats in Shinfield, Reading, Wokingham, Newbury and Thatcham
When it comes to rodent control there are several things a pest controller should be looking for when starting a new treatment, one of the biggest of these is how the rodents are gaining entry. Without establishing this you could be leaving home and business owners open to new infestations in the near future. At Abbey Pest Control we offer full surveys when starting new treatments to ascertain: 
 
• What type of infestation the property has (droppings can be helpful) 
• Where in the property the pests are frequenting, this helps us lay traps most efficiently 
• To identify entry points 
At Abbey Pest Control we also offer contracts for a range of commercial businesses, our existing commercial customers include lettings agents, convenience stores, pubs, restaurants, takeaways, hotels and builders’ yards. 
Rats in Shinfield, Reading, Wokingham, Newbury and Thatcham
We are now entering the season where rats, mice and squirrels are looking for nice warm homes to seek shelter from the colder weather. Unfortunately, this could easily be your home if there are voids through which they can squeeze. Rats, mice and squirrels can easily gain access to properties through the smallest of holes, such as those found in broken airbricks or unsealed weep holes, they can even gain access through elevated voids if there is suitable vegetation for them to climb. 
Rats in Reading
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