Though it has certainly taken its time in coming, the cold weather is finally returning to Georgia. While this is good news for fans of layering and hot cocoa, colder weather brings problems for homeowners in the form of invasive wildlife pests.
As the temperature drops, many creatures abandon their homes in the wild and seek out new, warmer locations to east and survive the winter. Unfortunately, your home is the ideal place, and homeowners are often inundated with new and troubling pest threats! One such east, the house mouse, has been increasingly active in the greater Cherokee county area.
So what are house mice, and how can they create problems for homeowners?
The common house mouse grows to a little over 7 inches in length from nose to tail and is covered in short fur that is typically gray, brown, or black in coloration. House mice are extremely curious creatures and are often found in the wild in areas such as fields and spaces with significant foliage. These mice are active during the day, and will typically explore their environment in search of food.
Like most species of mice, the house mouse has an extremely varied diet. While they have a preference for nuts and seeds, they are opportunistic scavengers and will eat almost any type of food when available.
Because they do not hibernate, house mice must find somewhere to survive through the winter. This will often lead them to homes that are both warm and have a readily available food source. These mice are quite skilled at infiltrating structures and can take advantage of the smallest gaps and cracks in the exterior of the home. Common areas that are often exploited by house mice include:
- Unscreened vents
- Cracks and gaps in the exterior structure
- Unsealed windows and doors
- Roof damage
Any of these areas, and many others as well, can be the avenue that allows the mice inside the home. Once they are inside, the mice will typically establish a comfortable living space in a small, secluded area. They will often take nest building materials from the home and can cause damage to insulation as well as wiring and piping in some instances. While the degree of destruction largely depends on the size of the infestation, damage done to wiring and other important parts of the home can create a fire risk.
So you may be wondering, how can you know if mice are active in your home?
Like many wildlife pests, house mice are often discovered due to homeowner’s overhearing “bumps in the night” caused by the pests moving around after dark. Oftentimes these sounds can be hard to trace because the mice could be moving in almost any part of the home, including inside the walls and ceiling.
Another common sign of house mouse activity are leftover droppings in areas that they frequent. These resemble a rod or pill shape and are usually fairly easy to identify. If you are concerned about potential mouse activity in your home, it is often best to call a licensed pest control provider to inspect your home. While you might be tempted to save money using methods with less upfront expense such as DIY traps, this approach is often ill-advised. While a trap is an excellent way to catch one or two mice, DIY traps often do little to deal with the majority o the infestation that remains safely hidden in nesting sites. On top of this, these traps also do not help you to identify how the mice have entered the home, and thus leave you exposed to potential future infestations. Due to these reasons and more, you will often save yourself money and expense by calling in professionals sooner rather than later.
So WHO should you call if you are dealing with mice?
At Canton Termite and Pest Control, we have decades of experience serving is the leading pest provider for the greater Cherokee county area. We offer a wide range of targeted pest solutions designed to deal with any pest problem you might encounter quickly, safely, and effectively!
So if you are in need of pest or wildlife control, or simply have a question, call us today at 770-479-1598!
Rats and Mice
At Canton Termite and Pest Control we deal with Rats and mice and their control all the time.
If you just watched the above video, then one of two things has probably occurred to you:
1- That is disgusting, and rats are apparently a problem wherever that is.
2- It’s actually rather impressive that the size of the pizza slice is greater than the size of the animal dragging it.
Regardless of where you stand between those two options, rats are a known problem in New York, and Nora Prentice does not like it. She has contacted the city’s health department twice about rat population. Nora no longer travels through the neighborhood park because it is home to almost two hundred rats. The city has closed her complaints after telling her that they are “working on the problem”. Comptroller Scott Stringer, who is a financial officer for the city of New York, accompanies Nora in her frustration. Scott Stringer thinks of himself as the “rat czar”, which is fitting based on his opinions about the rat population problem. Mr. Stringer suggests that the source of the problem is in the city’s health department. The department is not responding quickly enough to rat complaints, Mr. Stringer says. Additionally, Mr. Stringer believes that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority does not maintain a proper level of cleanliness in the subway stations, and that this is contributing positively to the rat population. The rats thrive on unclean environments, and Mr. Stringer wants to improve New York’s current condition of sanitation. Legend has it that there is a rat in the city for each person that lives there. When you consider that there are almost eight and a half million people living in New York, you begin to understand the scale of this claim! A Columbia University doctoral student studied the rat infestation last year.
Using statistical analysis, he estimated the city’s rat population at two million. Is this accurate? Scientists and city officials disagree with the student’s findings. They believe that it is impossible to accurately estimate the city’s rat population because of sewers, buildings, and other city structures. Normally, you can estimate the number of rats in an area outside by counting the burrows and multiplying by ten, but that is difficult to do in urban New York City. What, then, has caused an increase in the complaints by residents of New York about rats?
There has been an infamous war between New York’s health department and rats for decades, and they believe that the rat population has not increased over the past several years. According to them, the rats that are present in New York City became bolder last winter due to trash being left out on the streets for days on end because of snowstorms. The city officials also believe that complaining has risen because of the city’s new 311-smartphone application. Dr. Bragdom, the city’s rat expert, works in the health department as a scientist. She formerly had less than a dozen workers, but now has a team of nearly fifty and a three million dollar budget to attempt to bring down the rat problem so that it can be controlled; however, New Yorkers should bear in mind that even with lower populations, rats will always be present. No one is always going to avoid the rats in the Big Apple, but at least Nora Prentice will be able walk through the park.
Additional information on rats can be found below. Did you know that rats are carriers of at least eleven different diseases? One of those diseases is commonly known as the plague! Rats will transmit disease and infection through bites, scratches, touching food and surfaces, and other methods of physical contact. They reproduce quickly, and are assisted by this with good food and water sources, much of which is found in cities or other urban areas. If you want to prevent the chance for rats to enter your home, then “rat proofing” construction can be used, but more often sanitation is the bigger component of keeping rats out. The University of California’s Statewide Integrated Pest Management Program provides homeowners with a good means of searching for rat infestations below:
“ Inspect your yard and home thoroughly. If the answer to any of the following questions is yes, you may have a rat problem.
Do you find rat droppings around dog or cat dishes or pet food storage containers?
Do you hear noises coming from the attic just after dusk?
Have you found remnants of rat nests when dismantling your firewood stack?
Does your dog or cat bring home dead rat carcasses?
Is there evidence rodents are feeding on fruit/nuts that are in or falling from the trees in your yard?
Do you see burrows among plants or damaged vegetables when working in the garden?
Do you see rats traveling along utility lines or on the tops of fences at dusk or soon after?
Have you found rat nests behind boxes or in drawers in the garage?
Are there smudge marks caused by the rats rubbing their fur against beams, rafters, pipes, and walls?
Do you see burrows beneath your compost pile or beneath the garbage can?
Are there rat or mouse droppings in your recycle bins?
Have you ever had to remove a drowned rat from your swimming pool or hot tub?
Do you see evidence of something digging under your garden tool shed or doghouse?”
If the answer to even one of the above questions was yes, call 770-479-1598 for a free estimate today! Here at Canton Termite and Pest Control, our professionals seek to serve at the optimal level, ensuring your satisfaction with our work. We provide service throughout Cherokee County Georgia. Have a blessed day!
The first portion of this article gained information from World Teen, volume 2, number 3.
Mice in the House
In Cherokee County Georgia, During the cold winter months, small animals often seek shelter in homes and other structures.
One offender is the common field mouse. There are approximately 38 species of mice around the world. Mice have an excellent sense of smell can are actually more accurate than dogs at detecting scents. In fact, Israeli scientists have been working to train mice to work at sensing traces of bombs or dangerous chemicals as an airport security detector. As comical as that sounds, the research has been promising and the mice are more accurate than other detectors currently used. Mice are herbivores that typically consume fruits, seeds, and vegetables. However, mice adapted to urban environments will eat almost any type of food or scrap. Many cities have an epidemic due to large mice population, but suburban areas are at risk as well.
Every year, mice invade approximately 21 million American homes. These mice carry disease, contaminate food, and damage your home. Mice often enter into the residence by chewing holes into walls or through pipes. They will chew wire, books, furniture, and other materials in the home. Mice often shred soft items such as clothes or blankets to create scraps for nests. The frayed and chewed wiring that the mice leave is a fire hazard and could cause catastrophic damage. To make matters worse, mice droppings are poisonous, create a bad smell, and can carry disease. If a mouse enters into your home, it will quickly reproduce and soon create a major infestation. It is important to call a pest control specialist if you see even one mouse in your home, often a large infestation is hidden somewhere that will continue to spread if not eliminated.
Mice often enter homes during the winter months or if their food supply is destroyed. They are seeking food and shelter and will often form nests wherever they break in. The female mice mature quickly, and annually produce over 100 offspring. Once mice infest a home, it is difficult to remove them. Contrary to popular belief, cats are not useful for mouse control, and the only effective method is the use of baited traps. Snap traps, catch and release traps, and poison are the major tools for mouse control. While it is possible to deal minor infestations yourself, it is usually easier to at least consult professional help.
To prevent a mice infestation, make sure to repair any holes in screens, windows, and walls in your home. Seal any possible openings that a mouse can exploit. It also helps to regularly take out trash and to store food in appropriate containers. Firewood or any other piles of materials should be stored away from the house. If you hear sounds late at night or suspect you may have a mouse infestation, call a licensed professional to inspect your home. At Canton Termite and Pest Control, we receive hundreds of calls during this season relating to mouse and other pest removal. We have years of experience, and will give you the best price for the highest quality service, guaranteed! If you think you have a mice infestation, or any other pest or insect, call us today at 770-345-0442! We’ll make sure that, this Christmas season, nothing is stirring, not even a mouse!