What are Norway Rats?
The Norway rat commonly referred to as the street or sewer rat, is believed to be of Asian origin, arriving in the U.S. on ships from other countries in the 1700s. Today, Norway rats are found throughout the world. They have poor vision and are colorblind. Their other senses, including hearing, smell, touch and taste make up for their bad vision. Although not agile, they are capable of running, climbing, jumping and swimming. These rats are known to cause damage to properties and structures through their gnawing.
- Color: Brown with scattered black hairs; gray to white underside
- Legs: 4
- Shape: Long, heavily bodied; blunt muzzle
- Size: 7-9 ½ inches long
- Antennae: No
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What Do Norway Rats Look Like?
These rats have bristly brown fur, with black hairs dispersed throughout their coat. Their underside tends to be lighter, with gray to off-white coloring and even yellow tones. These rats have small eyes and ears, and their tails are shorter than the length of their head and body coupled together.
Signs of a Norway Rat Infestation
Gnaw marks throughout the house are one clue of the presence of rats. New bite marks or holes tend to be rough, whereas older ones are smooth from wear and are also often greasy. Spotting droppings, which are capsule-shaped, is another key indicator of a rat problem. Norway rats’ droppings have blunt ends, while those of roof rats have pointed ends. Other signs include footprints, greasy and dark rub marks from oily fur against pathways, burrows, runways with stacked food, and damaged or rummaged-through food products.
Norway Rat Prevention
How to Prevent Norway Rats
Norway rats can reproduce quickly, giving birth to about three to six litters each year. This makes it all the more important to take proactive measures, such as Norway rat control, to prevent an infestation from taking root.
These rats are often drawn to piles of wood, so homeowners should keep firewood stored well away from the structure and remove debris piles to reduce ideal nesting spots. It is also important to seal any holes on the outside of the home with steel wool to block potential points of entry. It is best to eliminate sources of moisture like leaky pipes, especially in crawl spaces and basements, as the dampness can attract rats in search of drinking water. If you see signs of a Norway Rat infestation, please give us a call at 336-272-4400 to set up an inspection by one of our certified technicians.
How to Get Rid of Norway Rats
The safest and most effective way for homeowners to get rid of Norway rats is to work with a professional. PMi can help with these infestations.
Thanks to their propensity to gnaw through almost anything, Norway rats can cause damage to properties and structures, making them a threat to homeowners. Equally important, these rats are carriers of serious diseases, including jaundice, rat-bite fever, cowpox virus, trichinosis and salmonellosis. Rats also pose other health threats, as they can contaminate food and introduce fleas into a home.
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