14.8 million American housing units saw rodents in the last year. With these numbers, it’s almost inevitable that you’ll see a mouse or rat scurrying across your property.
However, that doesn’t make it any less distressing. Your home is your haven, and seeing unwanted guests can make you feel uneasy.
The good news is that most rodents will start outside your house before showing up inside. So there’s a good chance you’ll spot these pests in your backyard or garden before they move in.
Here’s what you should do if rodents show up in your yard.
Clean Things Up
Rodents are prey animals, so they’re always looking for hiding spaces. Having lots of debris and compost in your yard will make it seem like a safe haven.
If you’ve been lagging on yard maintenance, it’s time to catch up. Here are some things you should do and keep up with:
- Mowing the lawn
- Weeding plant beds
- Removing dropped fruits
You should also remove your wood piles if you have any. These make the perfect nesting spaces for rodents.
If trees and shrubs are touching your home or give good access to it (such as through a branch), give them a good trim. You might even want to consider planting different greenery to make it more difficult for rodents to enter your house.
Remove Food Sources
In addition to removing dropped fruits, there are more steps you can take to eliminate food sources.
If you have a barbecue, give it a good wash, so rodents aren’t attracted to the drippings. It’s best to clean the grill and drip pan immediately after each use.
You should regularly empty your outdoor trash bins. The longer trash sits inside, the more it’ll rot and appeal to pests, not just mice and rats. Rotting garbage will attract flies, too.
Pet food bowls shouldn’t be left outside. If your furry friends are used to eating outdoors, you’ll need to adjust their feeding routine and bring the bowls inside. Even if you do this, ensure you don’t leave food lying around for long, as it’ll attract pests.
Use Mesh Fencing
Vegetable gardens attract mice and rats since they are an excellent food source. You can install mesh fencing around your gardens if you can’t bear to part with yours. You can also apply mesh fencing to trees that rodents have damaged.
Another way to make your vegetable garden more unappealing is to make the borders bare (free of grass and other plants). Again, because rodents are prey animals, they don’t like being out in the open. This bare border will make them hesitant to access your delicious vegetables.
Try to Attract Owls
Owls love to eat mice and rats, so you’ll have a natural pest control solution if you attract these birds to your yard.
To do so, hang an owl house or two on poles; these are easy to DIY. Ensure the opening is the right size so owls can get in, but not larger birds. Don’t hang these on trees, as squirrels might move into these boxes.
Seal Your Home
If rodents are in your yard, it won’t be long before they make their way inside.
Look carefully at your home’s exterior and check for cracks and openings. You should seal them immediately with solid materials that rodents find hard to chew through, such as concrete and metal.
It might help to cut down greenery so you can check hidden places for openings. Doing this could also reduce access to your home.
Set Out Traps
Buy some humane traps to catch the rodents already on your property. But make sure to hide them under boxes so other animals won’t be hurt if they’re attracted to the traps.
These traps might solve your pest population temporarily, but they’re not the most effective solution. Still, they can help control the population a bit.
Call a Pest Control Expert
One of the most important things you can do is call a pest control expert. They’ll have years of experience and knowledge, which means they’ll know how to deal with different kinds of rodents.
They’ll evaluate your property to determine potential entryways and help you seal them up, making it harder for rodents to seek shelter in your home when the weather gets bad.
Pest control professionals can also advise you on making your home as unattractive as possible to discourage mice and rats from sticking around. For example, they might identify food scraps on the floor or dishes left in the sink overnight.
In addition to single treatments, you can get quarterly or tri-annual pest control or customized programs if necessary. These experts will do their best to decrease the pest population on your property so you can have peace of mind.
Get Rodent Pest Control Today
Now you know what to do if you spot rodents outside your home.
While no method can guarantee to eliminate these pests, they’re sure to decrease your property’s attractiveness. And as a result, they won’t be as inclined to stay.
So if you suspect you’ve got rodents in your yard, take our advice to deter them. And make sure you get a good pest control company so they can help you keep these pests away.
If you need a professional to remove rodents, contact Pest Management Systems today. We can give you a quick quote!
*While these steps/tips will help reduce the likelihood of rodents, there’s no guaranteed way to eliminate all risks.