Rodents and Rodent Control
The word rodent means to "to gnaw". We will mostly be discussing the type of rodents called "commensal rodents". The word commensal means"sharing one's table".
Through the ages, rodents have been the cause of some tremendous plagues and diseases. Today, due to increased sanitation and effective rodent and insect control programs, the threat of disease from rodents is not as critical.
Rats and mice cause a massive loss of food worldwide. Besides eating our food, rodents spoil it by contamination with their feces, urine, or fur. They also cause damage to our buildings by their burrowing and gnawing activity. Rodents will gnaw through many types of materials in order to reach a location including lead sheathing, cinder block, aluminum siding and some concrete.
Rodents reproduce rapidly with major activity at night. Under stable conditions rodent movement for both rats and mice is limited.
A Norway or Roof rat will move within a diameter of 98 to 164 ft. and a house mouse,10 to 33 ft. If conditions are unstable or there are changes such as new building, they may expand the diameter. They may also expand their range in protected areas such as in sewers, in passages between buildings, and under groundcovers.
Rats tend to eat most of their food at one time, where mice will nibble a little at a time.
Rats tend to be cautious and mice are more curious.
Both of these rodents are able to squeeze through extremely small openings; 1/4 inch for mice and 1/2 inch for rats.
Rodents can be found not only in our homes, but supermarkets, restaurants, warehouses, food processing facilities, livestock facilities, and farm fields.