Norway rats have an extraordinary reproductive capacity. They need to, because they are very low on the food chain when they are out in the wild. However, in the home, the conditions for survival are much better, which means that this reproductive capacity helps their population explode. This is why it’s important to know the early signs of an infestation and get the rats under control.
Droppings are usually the first sign that you will come across when you have a Norway rat infestation. Rat droppings are easy to identify – they look like and are about the size of black grains of rice. They will be grouped up together in an area, usually behind furniture, appliances, inside drawers, and anywhere rats are active. Whenever you see these droppings, you can be sure that rats are present in the home.
Norway rats will leave two kinds of marks in the home. The first kind is the gnaw mark, which is a result of the rat chewing on surfaces in the home in order to file its teeth down or to get materials for its nest. You will usually see these marks on baseboards and furniture. The second type of mark is a sort of slime trail, which is created when the rats travel through the home. Rats have a film of oil on their fur which will be smeared on the surfaces they come into contact with.
Rats can make a lot of noise as they travel through the walls and go about their business at night. If you hear squeaks or scurrying in the walls at night, you might have either a rat or a mouse infestation.
Live or dead rats
Finally, you might spot an actual rat. When an infestation is large and a nest is overpopulated, the rats become much more careless and daring, so you might see one running around during the day. Similarly, rats may die for whatever reason somewhere that is out in the open, and you could come across one of their dead bodies.
If you notice any of these signs, it’s important to get in touch with a pest control specialist asap in order to get the infestation removed. For more information on how to detect a Norway rat infestation, or if you suspect that there are currently rats in your home, contact us today.