Rats are comensile pests, and have a symbiotic relationship with us. In short, the more humans, the more rats. They will be found anywhere that provides harbourage, shelter, food and water.
Typically, they will burrow under compost heaps, sheds, decking, and will quite often gain access to the cavity walls of a property via breaks in the sewers.
An example of a modern plastic manhole that has been gnawed through by rats:
The brown rat weighs between 350 and 500 grams and is typically between 20cm and 28cm long [excluding the tail]. They vary in colour from black through to grey/brown.
The first sign of a rat infestation is often their droppings [torpedoed in shape and about 20mm in length].
Other signs can be damaged packets of food, cartons, bags etc. and grease/dirt smear marks on skirting boards, floors and work tops.
Rats will urinate and defecate indiscriminately and almost continuously – producing up to 60 droppings per day. So, in short, yes, they pose a real risk.
More worryingly is the damage they can cause. Their propensity to gnaw means they can gnaw through electrical wires causing expensive electrical faults [and worse, electrical fires]. We have found instances where they have gnawed through plastic water pipes and caused flooding.
They pose a risk to health because they spread diseases through bites, urine, droppings, skin contact and parasites.
Yes, but please bear in mind they can squeeze through gaps of only 20mm in width.
Quite often however, problems with rats usually stem from the sewers. From breaks in the sewers, they can gain access to your cavity walls, and like mice, will gain access to the loft, and from here, forage the entire building looking for food and water.
In addition to proofing gaps and cracks, good rodent prevention practices include:
If you have a suspected problem with rats, ask us how we can help …
I wish I had employed PPM Pest Control years ago, they do a superb job in controlling pests on our site - nothing is too much trouble.
We had a Halls of Residence that had an infestation of Pharaohs Ants. PPM were quick to identify the problem, which is important, because the wrong type of treatment worsens the problem. They put together a treatment plan, informed all of the students, and implemented the riddance program perfectly.