There are numerous species of rats across the US, but only a handful can be considered household pests. These species are known to enter the home or the property and then start causing damage, hurting other animals and spreading diseases. Let’s take a closer look at these species and what you can expect during an infestation.
The Norway rat
The Norway rat is the most common rat species in the world. It is found across all continents with the exception of Antarctica, and if you have an infestation in your home, odds are that Norway rats are behind it. These rats are fairly large at 18 inches long (tail included), which means they can cause noticeable damage to various areas and objects in the home. However, the big issue with these rats is that they can spread a plethora of dangerous diseases. They also reproduce quickly, and they will increase their numbers as long as there is enough food to support their population.
The roof rat
The roof rat is also known as the black rat. It is slightly smaller than the Norway rat, and it is known for its predilection to seek elevated areas. This is why it will usually infest the upper areas of the home. It can also spread many dangerous diseases, and a small infestation can turn into a giant one in a fairly short period of time.
Also known as the packrat, the woodrat has a disproportionately long tail and large ears, with a grayish-brown fur coat. Its diet consists of nuts, seeds, leaves, berries, insects, small mammals and more. They carry numerous diseases as well, including the arenavirus, typhoid and trichinosis. They are most common in western North America, ranging from New Mexico to arctic Canada.
The marsh rice rat
The marsh rice rat is much rarer than the other species on this list, and it is usually found in the eastern part of Texas, Florida Keys and the Gulf Coast. This rat is usually gray in coloration, and it can also spread numerous diseases such as Lyme disease and Bartonella. However, since this mouse is so rare in most of the country, it’s not a real threat to most people.
If you have any questions about these rat species or if you have a rat infestation, contact us today and we will help you out.