Widespread Rodent Problems in AmericaIn Winter on January 7, 2014 at 5:09 pm | Written by admin
Throughout every season of the year, American homes in all areas of the country are vulnerable to infestations from various pests but few are as widespread and as common as small rodents such as rats and mice. According to a recent online survey conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of the National Pest Management Association (NPMA), over 29 percent of American homes have had a rodent infestation at one time or another. The data gathered from this survey was presented by the NPMA as an infographic to make Americans aware of how widespread rodent infestations are and help them prevent rodents from entering their homes.
In this survey, the NPMA set out to determine how widespread rodent infestations are in the U.S. and when and where they are most likely to occur. According to their responses from over 2000 adults, approximately 21 million homes in the U.S. are invaded by rodents each winter with the winter and fall experiencing the highest percentage of infestations at 45 percent compared to 29 percent in the spring and 28 percent in the summer. Most rodent infestations occur in the kitchen as 50 percent of participants reported infestations in their kitchens with 27 percent reporting infestations in the basement, 25 percent in the living room, and 24 percent in the attic or garage. This survey also reveals a small discrepancy between areas of the country that are invaded by rodents with 35 percent of infestations in the Northeast compared to 30 percent in the Southwest, 22 percent in the Midwest, and 28 percent in the West.
When rodents such as mice and rats invade a home, they can cause a variety of problems from major health issues to property damage. The health issues they can cause include triggering asthma attacks and allergies as well as spreading diseases such as Salmonella, murine typhus, infectious jaundice, and rat-bite fever. They may also be carrying disease causing parasites such as ticks, fleas, and lice. Rodents cause the most property damage by gnawing on materials such as wood, drywall, and electrical wires which creates a major fire hazard. They can also contaminate entire food supplies and are capable of producing large amounts of urine and fecal pellets. It is important for homeowners to act quickly if they discover a rodent infestation because a female mouse can give birth to up to 12 young every 3 weeks.
The NPMA is advising that homeowners across the country take the time to rodent-proof their homes this winter to prevent rat and mice infestations. Here are some rodent-proofing tips from the NPMA:
- Analyze the outside of your home for any cracks or crevices that are potential entry points and seal them with caulk. Rats can fit through openings the size of a quarter while mice can fit through dime-sized openings.
- Any large gaps should be filled with steel wool because the rough material is a deterrent for rodents.
- Install screens over attic vents and chimney openings.
- Replace worn out weather stripping and repair loose mortar around the foundation.
- Make sure that shrubbery and mulch in your landscape are at least 15 inches from the home’s foundation.
Green T Pest Control is urging all homeowners in the Chicago area to watch out for rodents in their homes this winter and if you discover an infestation in your home, contact us immediately to address the infestation.Comment »