Getting rid of rats in Berkshire.
The worst type of rat problems in the home occur when the Rat colony has access to shelter, water, available food and are left to breed and prosper in numbers. As the colony increases in size, or as the colder winter months commence, the rat hazards increase as they attempt to enter buildings occupied by humans to find food and shelter.
Rats are known to carry parasites such as fleas, ticks and mites which many people can be allergic to. Several diseases are also known to be carried (and spread) by rats such as:
- E Coli
- Weil’s disease (leptospirosis)
Rat Pest Control Tips
How to stop rats from entering your home or business
Look for early signs of a rat infestation. One customer found earth had been disturbed and piled up by the side of her chicken coup. They kept chickens in the garden of their house near Reading Berkshire. After calling our rat pest control service in Reading we responded to investigate the problem. Evidence of rat holes (burrows) rat runs and rat droppings (faeces) were found. Rats were allowed easy access to the chicken coup as it didn’t have a base and they could just tunnel under to where the food source was. In addition to implementing control measure to get rid of the rats, we were also able to answer some key questions. How did the rats get there in the first place? How can you stop rats from coming back again? You can view a short video of this treatment later on this page.
How to check for the presence of a Rat infestation.
- Rat hole’s, Rat runs, Rat droppings (dark tapered droppings 1-2cm), Rat “smear marks”
- Rat nests (warm hidden places such as in loft insulation) may contain shredded materials like plastic bags and paper.
- Damage as a result of gnawing *Ripped Bags *Ripped packaging
- Smells – strong ammonia type smell, more noticeable in enclosed spaces
- Noise – Scratching noises in the loft, Noises in wall cavities, Rustling sounds in sheds and garages
The Brown Rat
Latin/scientific name: Rattus norvegicus
Brown Rat, Norway Rat, Common Rat
They spread across Britain via the shipping traffic from foreign countries in the 18th Century, largely replacing the black rat. Along with house mice, they are considered to be the most widespread terrestrial mammal
Typically up to 18 months in the wild, but domestic rats live for an average of three years.
Head and body length: 18cm, Weight: 200-400g.
Brown rats have coarse brown (occasionally black) fur, with a pale underside. They have a long tail, which is sparsely haired.
Although originally native to east Asia and Japan, brown rats are now distributed world-wide. They are found all over Britain except for exposed mountain regions and some small offshore islands.
Brown rats are highly adaptable and can be found in a variety of habitats, typically near human habituation.
Brown rats are omnivorous but prefer starch and protein-rich foods, such as cereals. Their diet includes meat, fish, vegetables, weeds, earthworms, crustaceans, nuts and fruit. They sometimes cache food to return to later.
They are typically nocturnal, although they will sometimes forage for food during the day.
They live in loose colonies, made up of aggregations of clans – usually consisting of a mated pair, or a male and a harem of females. Clans will defend their territory from other rats, and there is a dominance hierarchy whereby the biggest rats are dominant over their smaller counterparts.
Home ranges are generally 50 metres in diameter. In areas of high population, fights will often break out, involving a vigorous scuffle leading to the loser being chased off and bitten on the rump.
Brown rats swim well and are sometimes mistaken for water voles. Rats have well-developed senses of hearing and smell.
Brown rats breed throughout the year and can produce five litters a year. Females give birth to an average of eight young, after a gestation of 22-24 days. These are weaned after 3-4 weeks.