Rodent Control

The Importance of Exclusion in Rodent Control

Rats and mice need food, water and a source of heat to survive, so houses and buildings are naturally the perfect home.  Anywhere a pencil fits through, a mouse can too.   Mice only need a ¼ inch opening to get inside and young rats only need about a ½ inch.

With rats and mice trying to push their way indoors, focusing on exclusion and prevention is the key to successfully controlling a rodent problem versus one that produces callbacks and continued frustration. 

To help control rodent populations, here’s a checklist for one of the key steps in rodent management, Exclusion and Sanitation.

Check for possible rodent entrances

  • Open doors, chewed wooden doors and crawl spaces where pipes meet wood siding
  • Vertical wires, pipes and tree limbs
  • Defective drain pipes
  • Burrows under foundations of buildings lacking basements
  • Hollow walls between floors

Trim foliage and clean up other potential rodent harborages

  • Trim overhanging branches that provide roof access.
  • Clean-out piles of wood, junk, pallets and hay.
  • Control sources of food and water such as bird feeders, dog bowls, food spillage, fountains, pools and ditches.
  • Eliminate weeds and maintain a clutter-free zone of at least three feet around building exteriors.

Exclude rodents from buildings

  • Close all holes in exterior and interior walls.
  • Permit no openings over ¼ inch, particularly around doors & windows.
  • Install self-closing devices on frequently used doors.
  • Install vinyl, rubber or bristle sweep seals under garage doors to eliminate any gaps.
  • Seals around pipes, drains and vents need to be tight.
  • Chimneys need to be capped and in good condition.

Keep an eye out for new holes & tunnels:

Efforts by rats and mice to return to old feeding grounds will be strongest a week or two after the building has been sealed up.


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