Black Roof Rats AKA Ship or House Rats Spread Diseases to Humans Via Urine, Droppings & More in Vacaville, CA

Some of us have a primal fear of snakes, bugs or rats. The black rat aka: ship rat, roof rat or house rat known to science as Rattus rattus seems appropriate. Lady and Tramp’s nemesis, (thanks Disney for that nightmare). They are everywhere. Roof rats hitch rides in shipping containers, shrubbery and interstate trucks. They are everywhere, colonizing areas previously clear of the plague carriers.

Black Rat Facts; Origin & History

roof-rats-wikiThese Asian invaders migrated west during Roman times, infesting ports and harbors across the Empire. By the end of the first century they had spread to all of Europe. As the European colonials spread around the world they transported the “hitchhiking” vermin with them, to the Americas. Polynesian Island ecosystems have been pummeled by these omnivorous mammals as they spread disease threatening man and beast. These critters can reach a length of 18 inches and weigh in at just short of a pound in weight – that’s pretty Rattus Monstrous.

Roof Rats Spread Diseases Via Contamination, Saliva, Droppings, Bites & Vectors Such as Fleas & Mites

Rat bites can transmit numerous disease organisms, including some that are deadly and incurable. Rat riding fleas were the cause of the “black plague” that killed two thirds of the European population during the Middle Ages. They feast on and crap in our grains. They compete with us for nuts and fruits. Feed your pets, feed the rats. Rats really, really like dog and cat foods. Their only saving grace is that they also eat bugs and feast on fungus (they have a liking for truffles) and thus spread beneficial fungi species.

Rodent Recon: Roof Rat Inspection

Roof Rat Rodent Urine & Poop Droppings: Rat scat bulks mouse dropping by three times the size. Same capsule shape with blunt ends but a ¼ to ½ inch long. Bad enough in the yard, but in our house, no way. Rat pee is a yellow line of fine drops or streaks seen under a black light. Yuck! Get a UV or also known as a “black light” is not only to track rat’s urine but they’re fun at parties and can be used to spot scorpions as well.
Rodent Footprints; Rat Tracks: Rat routes are pretty well packed with no vegetation in the runway. Their back feet leave a track ¾ to an inch in length. Rats tend to “tail drag” leaving a mark between their feet. Side walls are oil or grease marked.
Rat Holes in Walls, Attics, Yard & More: Gnawed holes about two inches in diameter, through wood, walls and food packaging. The gnawing can damage structure and electrical. Gnawing, scratching and digging noises are rats, not Casper the ghost.

Roof Rat Clean Up, Prevention & Exclusion

Clean up & Sanitation: These are primary control mechanisms. Rats need a ready supply of food, water and nesting materials so removing these attractants is important. Store bulk foods in metal containers; remove paper clutter and cardboard, useful for nesting. Store dog and cat food overnight in rat resistant/proof containers. Clean unwanted vegetation from around and close to the house like weeds and grass clippings, wood piles etcetera.
Seal Rodent Entry Points: Roof rats can enter through an opening as small as a half inch. Seal up doors, window and shutters. Check floor drains and vents. Openings should be less than a ¼ of an inch.
Roof Rat Control: Chemical or mechanical. Traps are preferred over baiting. Baiting is dangerous to children and pets. Rat bait can be used if you have a heavy infestation. Rats are nocturnal and reclusive. See a rat in the day, you have a major problem.

Professional Rodent Control
Need help? If you live in the Bay Area of California, a winning solution is to call on the experts from Hydrex Pest Control of the North Bay. We have some special tactics to use against these dangerous disease ridden invaders!


Hydrex Pest Control of the North Bay Inc.
4685 Scotts Valley Rd.
Lakeport, CA 95453
(800) 760-3028

Hydrex Pest Control of the North Bay Inc.
1120 Industrial Ave
#18 Petaluma, CA 94952
(707) 795-6345


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