North Carolina homes are unfortunately prone to rats. Rats invade homes, eat food, leave droppings, and put both families and pets at risk for disease. While there are many different types of rats in North Carolina, all of them can be controlled with the right extermination methods.
There is more than one type of rat, but the brown rat/Norway rat is by far the most common. Babies are small and bald, and live in nests of the parent rats. 2 to 10 rat babies may be born in each litter, with 5 litters per year. It’s this rapid breeding that makes rats very problematic.
Rats remain juveniles for as long as 5 weeks, after which time they are able to mate. Rats are also incestual, and breed with any male/female pair they can find. This means that two rats can become hundreds of rats in less than a year, although many will die from disease, predation, and lack of food. Rats can live from 2 to 4 years.
Rats are known carriers of disease, including rabies. They break into food and can create tunnels that allow them to make entire ecosystems in and around your home. Rats can also cause property damage as they use things they find around the house to create their nests. They also leave droppings everywhere, create a lot of noise at night, and may leave a musty smell.
Rats are prevented through exclusion. You or an expert should go all around your home and try to find any points that could become entranceways. If your area is known for rats, you may also want to hide rat poison in areas inaccessible by pets or children.