The Most Effective Rodent Control Solution For Yakima County Properties

Rodents are everywhere, but we hardly see them. When a squirrel appears on the back deck, some of us freeze to watch it. We would do that if we saw squirrels all the time, or in large (and disconcerting) numbers. We do the same thing with other rodents, such as woodchucks. Have you ever slowed your car to watch a furry woodchuck on the side of the road? Woodchucks and gophers are fun, until they cause trouble— and Bill Murray has to go after them with dynamite. But the rodents you'll deal with in your Yakima County yard will rarely be ground rodents or lawn rodents. Today, we're going to take a look at common types of rodents in our area, how different rodents are different, and how you can use a knowledge of rodents to keep them out of your home. If you don't want to learn about rodents and you're only here because you have a rodent problem, don't worry. You don't have to read an article about rodent control to get control of rodents. You can jump to our contact page for rodent pest control in Yakima County. We can fix your rodent problems.

How To Identify Common Types Of Rodents In Yakima County

Do you know what makes a rodent a rodent? If you don't, you'll have a difficult time keeping these pests out of your home. Rodents in Yakima County have a few common traits. They all have hair. You won't find any rodents with feathers or scales. They all have tails, though some have long tails and others have short tails. All rodents give birth to living young. They don't lay eggs. But, the most important trait of all are the incisor teeth of a rodent. They never stop growing so rodents must gnaw on things to file those teeth down. Sometimes, this brings them into your home where they will give birth to many living young.

When you see a hairy animal in your yard, it is likely a rodent. Forty percent of all mammals on the earth are rodents. You might see a squirrel, gopher, vole, chipmunk, rat, mouse, or some other animal of the order rodentia. They are all common in Yakima County yards. We're going to focus on two of them. Can you guess which two? If you thought, rats and mice, you are correct. Those are the worst rodent pests we have in our area. They're also the worst rodent pests found in the entire world.

Rodents Can Spread Disease And Damage Property

It is essential to consider the threats that rodents present, as you consider what to do about them. If you think of them as cute and furry critters, you may not roll your sleeves up and take the steps needed to keep rodents out of your home. Here are just some of the ways rodents present a risk.

  • Rodents carry ticks and fleas. Infected ticks and fleas can spread diseases such as Lyme, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, ehrlichiosis, tularemia, bartonellosis, Murine typhus, plague, and more.
  • Rodents pick up bacteria when climbing in trash, sewers, and other dirty places. As they move about in your home, they'll contaminate surfaces and food.
  • Rodents chew on stored furniture and soil them with their waste.
  • Rodents chew on wires inside walls and are considered a fire hazard.
  • Rodents chew holes in baseboards, sheetrock, plywood, and other building materials.
  • Rodents rip up insulation, wallpaper, and clothing as they gather materials for their nests.

People often think of rodent problems as being the thumping and scratching noises they make inside walls. If the rodents in your home are doing this, you might want to thank them. Annoying noises will make you take action. Not hearing noises can allow rodents to impact your health and damage your property right under your nose.

How And Why Rodents Find Their Way Into Our Homes

Now that you know why it is critical to address rodent problems and keep rats and mice out, let's focus on rodent prevention. A great way to consider rodent prevention is to talk about how and why they find their way into homes.

Teeth: We touched on this, but now it is time to drill into the topic. Rodents use their teeth to gnaw on things. You have to guard your home to keep rodents from chewing their way inside. In most cases, minor exclusion materials are needed, such as expanding foam and silicone caulk. While rodents can chew through these materials, they may not think to try.

  • Seal around your utilities, such as pipes, wire conduits, and wires.
  • Put foam in joist voids.
  • Apply metal flashing to wood that rodents are chewing on.
  • Use hardware cloth to keep rodents from getting under your deck, porch, patio, or stairs.
  • Use a foundation repair kit to seal cracks in your foundation.
  • Use a caulking gun to fill in gaps or holes in rotted wood, or replace the wood.
  • Inspect door and window frames. If you see holes, use wire mesh or hardware cloth to cover those holes and keep rodents from continuing to chew their way through.

Noses: Rodents don't always create holes to get inside. In many cases, they will enter through openings that already exist. They'll also make small holes larger if they are sufficiently motivated to do so. One motivator for rodents is the smell of food. You can seal smells in your home in a few ways.

  • Make sure your exterior doors have a good seal all the way around by replacing weatherstripping and door sweeps, or by realigning your doors.
  • Put trash in a scented bag to mask the odor of food when it decays.
  • Put meat, and other items prone to decay, inside plastic bags that you collect from the grocery store before you place them in your trash.
  • Store kitchen and pantry foods in sealed containers.

Garbage: The scent of your garbage is probably off putting to you. Believe us when we say that rodents do not find that smell unpleasant. They love it. The smell of decaying food is a promise that dinner is ready. You need to properly manage trash to keep rats and mice out of your home.

  • Get your trash to the curb weekly so that organic matter doesn't rot and stink up your receptacles.
  • Keep your receptacles covered. Why covered? Because rats and mice can jump and climb into trash receptacles in ways that would startle you.
  • Store receptacles away from your exterior walls if possible and not terribly inconvenient.
  • Clean your receptacles if they acquire an odor.

Routes: While rodents can get into your home by way of foundation cracks and low-lying entry points, they often get in through roof vulnerabilities. Most homes have more vulnerabilities up there than they do at ground level. Don't worry; you don't have to get up onto your roof to deter rodents. Here are some ways to keep them from accessing roof vulnerabilities.

  • Trim branches away from your roofline or cut down branches that hang over your roof.
  • Insert something in your downspouts to prevent rodents from climbing up through your gutters. Wire mesh works well.
  • Put protector guards on pipes that run up your exterior walls. These guards look like upside down cones.

Clutter: Rats and mice have poor eyesight. They must use their other senses to navigate. But they use these other senses so well that they can move in the pitch dark with little or no trouble. One sense they use quite a bit is their sense of touch. They'll move their head back and forth to feel around them with their whiskers. As they do this, they're also using their senses of smell and hearing, but we're going to focus on touch. A clutter-free yard is resistant to rats and mice because they can't comfortably cross over open spaces.

  • Stay on top of picking up toys.
  • Store lawn equipment inside.
  • Remove unnecessary objects from your yard.

Food: Rats and mice eat several times a day. They are strongly motivated by food. While they'll eat garbage and will try to get into your home if they smell the food you're cooking, the food sources that attract them to your yard are mostly natural.

  • Nuts
  • Fruits
  • Berries
  • Bird seed
  • Bugs

Are you beginning to see a clear picture? When you alter conditions and block routes, you keep rodents from getting into your home. Sure, it takes a little work, but you'll have more success using these tips than you will laying down traps for them. While traps have their purpose, they are not a complete solution on their own and, when they fail, you may not know it. This can allow rodents to continue to harm you and damage your stuff. 

The Most Effective Rodent Control For Yakima County Homes

When you want a complete rodent control solution, reach out to Prosite. We use industry-leading methods to control rodents. When we're done, you won't have to wonder if the rodents are gone.

Connect with us today to schedule service for your Yakima County home. You don't have to live with rodent problems.

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