rats controlThe bubonic plague that once killed an estimate amount of 25 million may once again bring its full terror in Madagascar. With around five hundred cases of bubonic plague reported in the island since 2009, the risk of a major outbreak is expected unless the necessary actions are made to counter this possible epidemic.

The bubonic plague is known to have been the main cause of the “Black Death” which killed around 30-60% of the population in Europe. Those infected with the bacterial infections that rats and mice caries can kill an infected human in about four days if left untreated. With this threat in mind, it calls the importance of how to identify and prevent rat infestations.

Identifying infestations:

In order to identify if there is an infestation in your home, here are some signs to check for;

Rat droppings would be one of the first signs that there is an ongoing infestation. If you notice a lot of them in garbage cans, pet food containers and other areas where rats may be able to find food, then there is a possibility of an infestation.

If you have pets, and they always seem to be chasing rats around your house or may bring dead rats and mice, then an infestation is most likely to be present. If this happens often, it means that there are plenty of rats in your home and this is an infestation. If there are no pets but the rats are seen running around the home, there is an infestation.

Other signs are when you hear sounds from the attic, basement or on the roof. If this happens every day, then expect large populations of rats in the area. Since rats and mice likes to gnaw on most materials such as woods, plastics and other objects, examine them properly for clues. The more of this you see, the larger the rat population is.

Look for burrows and paths that rats make. Rats tend to move in a specific motion and will leave urine trails to mark their habitats, for territorial defense and to attract the opposite sex.  Check your garden or house for these trails if they are numerous which may be a clear sign  of an infestation.

Below are some tips of how to avoid and eliminate rat infestations:

–          Don’t let them invade your homes.

  • Repair any possible entry points that rats and mice could use to get into your house. Repair any small holes in doors, walls and even on the roof.
  • Get the neighbors involved in cleaning because if any of your neighbors are affected, then it’s very easy for the rats and mice to invade other homes as well.

–          Dealing with rat infestations

  • Use traps, bait stations and rodent proofing materials found on the market.
  • Checking the sewer system in your home and ensuring it’s not faulty to allow rats to pass through. By setting up the needed rat-stop functions which allow water to flow and rats to stop entering, you can minimize the entry points of these rats.
  • Allow a two week period to run where the rat traps are constantly used and evaluate how much rats were killed or captured. Check which areas have the heaviest activities for possible entry points and locations where they might be hiding.
  • Repeat steps one and two by constantly evaluating and assessing where the rats and mice may be breeding. Setting traps alone will not get rid of rats, there has to be a constant check and follow up to determine where the rats come in from and do any repairs if need be to block them in.
  • If all of these fail call in a rodent control professionals who can exterminate the rats.
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