Thousands of years ago, the Agricultural Revolution transformed the human race, shifting us away from a hunter-gatherer lifestyle to one of permanent housing and farming. This was a major step forward, but it resulted in some issues that persist to this day. To wildlife such as rats and mice, a stockpile of grain and produce is a banquet, and humanity has had to deal with thieving rodents ever since. In fact, it is widely believed that wildcats were domesticated for the purpose of rat and mouse population control, and “mouser” cats are at work on farms even today. Meanwhile, in cities and suburbs, it is not cats who are taking care of rodent removal and other wildlife removal. Rats, mice, or even a squirrel infestation can be handled with professional rodent removal or commercially available rat traps. Animal removal is essential today just like it was in prehistoric times, and rodent removal can take many forms.
Rats and mice are not killers, but they can still pose a threat to human society. For example, the age-old problem of losing food and grain to them is still present. Professionals estimate that rats, mice, and other wildlife consume or contaminate as much as 20% of the world’s food supply, and without modern rodent removal, this figure could be as high as 50%, a staggering amount. This would seriously impact the agricultural industry around the world, all because of rodents.
These small animals present other hazards to people and property in cities and homes as well. Alleyways, houses, and public buildings are appealing to these rodents because urban areas provide a lot of hiding spaces and food alike for these rodents, and they spread trouble wherever they go. Disease and sanitation is one such issue. Rats and mice, like most wildlife, would rather flee than bite if confronted, but they may bite if cornered. A bite not only hurts, but rats and mice are known for transmitting the rabies virus, which is deadly. People and pets alike may be exposed to rabies if rats and mice are present. On top of that, rats and mice tend to carry fleas, and these creatures may jump from rodents onto people and pets.
These rat-born fleas are deadly, too. Their bites draw only tiny amounts of blood, but they can easily carry contagions. The infamous Black Death was spread by flea-infested rats who spread across Europe from Asian trading ships. The cat population was low at the time due to witch hunts, and this allowed rats (and thus the plague) to spread out of control. Today, there may not be a Black Death epidemic, but rats and their fleas are still a serious health threat that should be taken seriously.
Rats and mice also love to chew, and the same is true for squirrels. These rodents’ teeth grow constantly, so they trim those teeth by chewing on anything. This may include wires and plastic pipes in a person’s home, and this damage can short out electrical services and cause leaks in pipes. This results in expensive utility repair. And finally, the sight or even just evidence or rats and mice can seriously damage any establishment’s image, such as a hotel or restaurant. A business may soon suffer just because patrons are aware of rats and mice on the premises. What can be done about this?
In a regular suburban home, rats, mice, or squirrels may invade the home and cause any or all of the problems listed above. Squirrel families may invade the home when tree branches are close enough to the roof, and adult squirrels will chew their way into the attic through the wooden walls. Roofing contractors can be hired to remove those squirrels and patch up the holes that they chewed. Special paint can be used to discourage further invasions.
Smaller rat and mouse populations indoors can be handled with classic baited rat traps, or even poison pellets that are lethal when ingested. Great care should be taken, however, so that children and pets do not eat those pellets, too. Or, live capture can be done: cages with bait can be set up, and once a rodent is captured inside, it can be relocated elsewhere and released into the wild.