Rats are a terrible infestation in Australia. In recent weeks, there has been a significant increase in rats seen in Queensland and some people have seen rats that have been rather large, such as the size of cats. Learning how to deter rats from your home or learning how to get rid of rats from your home is very important.
To get rid of rats Australia’s government has passed laws to ensure homeowners do this. In fact, it is a legal requirement. Therefore, read on to find out how to protect your home.
Understanding Household Rat Infestations
There are many reasons and ways that a rat infestation in the home can happen. Understanding the typical rat behaviour can help you to find ways to prevent a rat infestation.
Signs of Rat Infestation
There are numerous signs of rat infestations. Though it is unlikely that you’ll spot a rat. Rats are very secretive and tend not to be spotted out in the open. And they don’t like to be spotted during the day either. If you do spot a rat or if you see one in the day that is a very bad sign, as it means competition between individuals is so high that they’re taking more risks.
It is more likely that you will see smaller signs. You might, for instance, see rodent droppings around the edges of the building. Rats don’t like to walk in the middle of the building, so they will often skirt around the edges, even if it means they have to take a longer route.
Another sign you might find is holes in food storage items. Rats can eat through almost anything including concrete, plastic, and other materials. Therefore, you can spot signs of the rats by how they’re gaining access.
You might also notice odours around homes that have been infested by rats. Rat urine is very smelly and it can be horrendous to smell around the home. In garages and outhouses, it can be very smelly.
Finally, you might notice signs of nests such as grass, hay, or fluff. Rats like to have nests made from soft, warm materials. It helps to keep them comfortable and can be a good place for them to keep young warm before their fur grows.
Risks Associated with Rat Presence in Homes
There are several dangers to rat infestations. For instance, there are numerous rats to human transmitted diseases. These can often be caused by coming into contact with rat faeces and urine.
Rats can also contaminate food sources as they come into contact with the food or packaging.
Rat diseases cause both digestive issues and breathing problems. Some of these can be fatal.
Rats are also known to chew on wooden structures and wires. Damage can cost hundreds of dollars to repair and also cause significant disruption to your life.
Preventive Measures for Rat Control
Pictured above: Ultrasonic Rat Repeller
There are lots of ways that you can prevent rat infestations in the home. Here are some of the options for your Australian home.
Rat-Proofing Your Home
Rat-proofing your home is very important. Several options are necessary to ensure rats don’t see your home as a handy home or food source.
To start with, you need to make sure there are no leaks in the home or ways that water is accessible to rats. Rats are required to drink every day or they die. So they need to find a close water source. That is why any leaky pipes or other water access can be very attractive for the rat.
Another immediate option is to ensure that all access points are protected. While rats can chew through many building materials, they are more likely to avoid doing this if there is no option, so shutting the house up.
The next step is to be more careful with food waste. Metal bins are the most effective at keeping waste secure. If you use bags or plastic bins, rats can easily access them by chewing through the sides.
Similarly, rats can also access bird feeders, so using a rat-proof bird feeder should be considered.
Keeping the home clean is also critical. Mess can prevent you from noticing the smallest signs of a rat infestation. And it can providing nesting materials and food sources for rats.
Finally, use devices around the home to deter the rats. Ultrasonic rat repller devices create a noise that can iritate rats. While it doesn’t cause any physical harm, these devices will often cause the rat to leave an area.
Natural and Chemical-Free Deterrents
There are plenty of natural and chemical-free deterrents that you can use.
Plants are a great option because they can enhance the look of garden/home as well as produce a odour that is distasteful for the rat. Some plants that you might want to use include catnip, rosemary and garlic.
You might also want to use ultrasonic rat repeller plug devices. These should be placed in numerous locations across your property to offer maximum protection to your home. These devices produce an irritation to the rats that they will try to avoid.
Effective Methods to Get Rid of Rats
Pictured Above: Envirobug Plug-in Ultrasonic Rat Repeller
If there is a rat infestation in the home, then you need to get rid of them. Several options are available to homeowners.
Traps and Baits
There are numerous traps and baits which can be placed around the home. While they can be effective at killing rats, rats often live in large colonies. Killing/trapping one or two rats is going to have a limited impact on the population and a female rat can replace those killed in a couple of weeks as rats can have five or six litters every single month.
Other extermination techniques can be used. For example, poison can be used to kill rats by getting them to eat or take back food to the nest which is then eaten by the colony. Electrical tests can also be used.
However, as with traps and baits, one or two rats being eliminated isn’t going to affect the general population. And you might also think that if you eliminated all the rats in the area, some others might just move into the area.
Seeking Professional Help
In many cases, seeking professional help can be important. They can identify where rats are accessing the property, and what they’re doing and create rat treatment plans that can prevent rat infestations in the future as well.
There are numerous rat control experts across Australia. Calling these people in can help you support your control efforts.
Rat Eradication: Specific Home Settings
There are many different rat eradication options in the home. Some of these are about eco-friendly options and some are about killing the rats.
Rat Control in Different Areas of the House
Rat control isn’t just about controlling them in one place in the home. If they’ve entered the home, then they can move around the home. Therefore, when creating rat eradication programs in the home, be sure that you include all areas of the home.
Dealing with Nesting Sites
And while activity areas are important places in the home to protect, nesting sites are core to the prevention of rat infestations. Rats will only seek food near nesting sites. So by getting rid of the nesting sites, you can prevent infestations.
Therefore, if you are seeking to remove nests from your home, find the nest and destroy it.
Maintenance and Long-Term Prevention
Of course, short-term prevention and cures are not going to last long. You need to carefully create long-term solutions that deter and prevent rats from infesting your home.
The first thing to consider is to clean up all infestations carefully. Always wear clothes that can be disposed of or washed. You need to use a strong cleaner to ensure that any germs or potential infections are quickly and effectively used. You might need to use a power washer to ensure the area is really clean.
Preventive Strategies for Future Infestations
Then you need to find ways to prevent infestations in the future. For example, you need to ensure that there are no ways to access the property. You also need to ensure that food stores are safely stored away and can’t be accessed.
Regularly cleaning is also important. Using scents that deter rats can be effective such as mint and lemongrass.
You might also want to consider adding several ultrasonic devices around the home.
Rat infestations can be a significant problem. Solving them is best for protecting your home from damage and the spread of disease. Above are some of the techniques that can eliminate rats and prevent them from re-entering your home.
FAQ about How to Rid Your Home of Rats
How do I know if I have a rat infestation in my home?
There are many signs of rats in your home. Droppings and the strong smell of urine are probably the ones that you will notice first.
Are there humane ways to get rid of rats?
Using deterrence is important. Using plants that rats don’t like and ultrasonic devices are the most humane ways to get rid of rats.
What are the risks of DIY rat control methods?
Some DIY rat control options are less effective and if you don’t know what you’re doing, then it can cause larger rat infestations.
How long does it take to get rid of a rat infestation?
The length of time to get rid of rats in an infestation can take days or weeks depending on the size of the infestation and the methods that you use.
Should I seek professional help for severe rat problems?
A professional can help you solve a severe rat problem. But they can also be expensive.
How do I get rid of rats in the garden, Australia’s laws are complicated.
In Australia, it is the legal responsibility of the homeowner to prevent rats from settling in a home or property. If you notice any rat problems, you need to take steps to get rid of rats in the house or outbuildings.