Yakima County Homeowners' Complete Guide To Effective Rodent Control

Rodents are persistent pests that require a persistent solution. While every home is somewhat different, and conditions vary from home to home, rodent control is often similar. The secret to getting effective results is understanding how rodents behave. We're going to shine a light on this behavior today. We'll tell you what kinds of rodents we have in Yakima County, problems they cause, how exclusion work gets control of rodent problems, and what is required for sustained rodent control. If you have been going round and round with rodents on your property and you just want someone to give you answers, we can help. Navigate to our contact page at any time to request professional rodent pest control in Yakima County. The Prosite service team is happy to help. 

The Types Of Rodents That Commonly Invade Homes

There are three types of rodents that get into homes in Yakima County. They are rats, mice, and squirrels. Squirrels are furry-tailed rodents that typically remain backyard rodents but occasionally invade attics. Rats and mice are the worst because they get into structures and do more than make a mess in attic spaces.

Mice: There are many mice living in Yakima County. We could go through the list and discuss the differences between the Great Basin pocket mouse and the Pacific jumping mouse, but it wouldn't give you much insight into how to control mice in your yard or keep them out of your home. Let's simplify the matter by saying there are three categories mouse-like rodents are placed in. Some never get inside. (Voles are an example of this kind of rodent.) Some get inside but don't prefer to stay. (Deer mice are an example of this kind of rodent.) The worst of all mouse pests are house mice, Mus musculus. (They prefer to live near or inside man-made structures.) So, of all mice that may get into your home, the house mouse is the one to learn how to properly identify. They are typically dusty gray with a cream-colored underbelly.     

Rats: There are many rat species in Yakima County. The two species that create the most trouble are Norway rats, Rattus norvegicus, and black rats, Rattus rattus. Norway rats are brown rats and black rats are—well, black. Black rats are also called roof rats. When you see a Norway (brown) rat in your yard, you can assume a few things. It is likely to enter your home through entry points near ground level and it will likely create a ground burrow in your yard. Norway rats are ground rodents. If you see a black rat, you should know that it is a tree climber and likes to create aerial nests. It will invade your attic, grow a population, and create several nests up there. 

Once you have evaluated what kind of rodent you're dealing with in your home or on your property, the next step is to consider the dangers. Why? Because rodent control isn't easy and professional rodent control costs money. You have to consider the effort or the cost—sometimes both.     

The Many Problems A Rodent Infestation Can Create In Your Home

We won't spend a long time on this. Our goal is to make the point that rats and mice are not harmless woodland creatures. They are common rodents in urban environments and they present many issues wildlife pests don't. If you are already aware of the dangers rats and mice present, you can skip to the next section.

  • House fires. Rodents chew on wires and gas lines. 
  • Damaged belongings. Rodents chew holes in many things. When they get into attic spaces and find stored furniture or storage boxes, they can create many issues.
  • Damaged plants. Rodents eat a variety of plants in landscaping and gardens.
  • Feces and Hantavirus. The feces of rats and mice are a disease concern. When feces are left in ventilation ducts, they can turn to powder and become airborne.
  • Urine. Rodents leave their urine as they move about their environments. Urine is not only stinky but is also a contamination concern.
  • Structural damage. Rodents chew holes to get into your home. They also chew holes to move about inside your home.
  • Secondary pests. Exterior holes created by rats and mice can let other pests inside. Some of the pests in our area bite, sting, or spread diseases.
  • Mold. When water gets in through rodent holes, it can lead to a mold problem. Mold spores can become a source of illness.
  • Wood rot. Damaged wood can weaken the structure of your home and have cascading implications. 
  • Ticks and fleas. These two pests spread many diseases, including Rocky Mountain spotted fever, ehrlichiosis, and Lyme disease. 
  • Food contamination. Rodents get into kitchens and pantries and contaminate stored food.

It is not good to have rats or mice in your home. Not only do they have the potential to do all of these things, but problems increase as their population increases. Believe us when we say, the population will increase! Not only will rodents reproduce indoors, they can grow their populations quickly. For example, a female mouse can have a litter of around six pups every three weeks. Each pup can begin to mate and have pups of their own in as little as four weeks. It doesn't take long to have your home overrun by mice. Rats are just as bad or worse. Rat mommas have three to fourteen pups in each litter.      

Five Easy Yet Effective Rodent Exclusion Tips For Around The House

There are many ways to control rodents, and effective rodent control requires a multipronged strategy, but at the heart of effective rodent control is exclusion work. You have to stop rodents from getting in if you hope to arrest rodent activity in your home. Exclusion work also helps to prevent rodent infestations. Here are a few of our best tips and how they work to keep rodents out.

1. Trim Tree Branches

The branches near your roofline offer a path for rodents to leap onto your roof. Once on your roof, they can access the interior of your home by exploiting vulnerabilities up there. A simple solution is to cut those branches.

2. Block Access To Roof

Rats and mice can work their way up downspouts or climb up pipes that run up the sides of your home. Use wire mesh to keep rats and mice out of your gutter system and install guards on pipes or wire conduits to stop rodents in their tracks. 

3. Repair Building Materials

Weatherproofing is essential. It helps to keep warm air in your home on cold winter days. Your weatherstripping also helps keep pests out. If you have holes, rats and mice may exploit them. Check the seals around all your exterior doors and replace weatherstripping, door sweeps, or screens where necessary. Check vent covers as well. Rodents often enter homes through vents. 

4. Fill In Holes And Seal Gaps

While rats and mice can make holes, they are far more likely to use a hole that exists. They may squeeze and wiggle through a small hole or chew on it and make it bigger. In either case, it isn't good to provide rats and mice with starter holes. Use expanding foam or a caulking gun to patch holes, fill in voids, and seal gaps. A common entry point to pay attention to is gaps around PVP wire conduits, water mains, and sewage pipes.

5. Prevent Harborage

One reason rodents enter homes is that they first find a location that is protected and they nibble on structural wood in the area. If a rodent gets under your deck and chews on the sills of your home over time, they'll have a perfect entry point, one that you're not likely to detect and seal. Preemptive exclusion keeps rodents out of this critical space. We recommend using hardware cloth to create a barrier. Insert the material at least a foot into the ground to stop rodents from digging under. Any space near or under your home can be protected with hardware cloth. Another common trouble spot is under homes that have a crawlspace and block foundation. Use this tip to get in front of rodent problems and keep rodents out from under your home.

Contact The Professionals For Total Rodent Control For Your Home

All pest control companies are not the same. When you look for a company in your area, consider one that goes the extra mile, like Prosite. Here are a few ways we stand out from the competition.

  • We provide pest-proofing service. If you don't want to do all of the difficult exclusion work, we have you covered.
  • We provide crawlspace encapsulations. When rats and mice are getting into the space under your home, we have the perfect solution to stop them.
  • We install pest control attic insulation. When rodents get into your attic, your insulation can make them go right back out. 
  • We provide industry-leading rat and mouse surveillance, population control, and route management.
  • We provide wildlife control services. If squirrels are your problem—no problem. We install one-way doors to allow squirrels to exit, or use cage traps to humanely.
  • Remove squirrels. We don't just deal with rats and mice.

If you're in Yakima County, reach out to us for assistance. You are in good hands with our hardworking and knowledgeable technicians. There is no better way to deal with rodents.

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