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How to Estimate Your Rodent Numbers

Bug Lady posted this on Aug 11, 2016

Monica Bird+ | December 21, 2010
Because rats typically utilize secluded spots near their runways and tunnels as also eating area, piles of food residue, nuts, seeds, shells or indigestible food items) may been seen and indicate a infestation. Homeowners may also notice cats and dogs performing excited sniffing and probe certain areas, this may be an indication of a rodent problem.

It is difficult to do more than a “guesstimation” of how many rats a home or area may have, but you can assume that if rodents signs are fresh you have a pretty large population. Times when you clearly know there are more than a couple rats it is best to overestimate the infestation. Underestimated will cause a homeowner to use less than the appropriate amount of rat bait or traps for the situation. You will therefore be less successful then if you have used more than necessary traps.

Pest control professional would use a non toxic bait to determine population of rats, and calculate how much of the bait has been eaten in a 24 hour period. Once you have an idea of your rat population using the correct tools such as a rat bait for control is important.

A rodenticide is a pesticide that kills rodents, mice and rats. There are typically 2 different types of groups of mice bait, anitcoagulants and non-anticoagulants.

Anticoagulant rodenticides, comprise about 90% of all products available on the market. These cause death as a result of internal bleeding which causes the rodent‘s blood loses its clotting ability and the capillaries are destroyed. All rodent baits are slow acting and death ranges from three days to 10 days following the ingestion of the rat bait.

Not all rat bait is created equal, there are single feed types that require the mouse to only ingest enough in a single feeding to poison themselves, with others types taking more than one feeding to be successful.

Rat bait is best used in a rodent bait station. They are available in a wide range of sizes and shapes. Homeowners can locate ones that are specific to their needs. By placing the rat bait within an enclosed station, one prevents accidental ingestion of pets and children and make the use of the bait much safer. Bait stations will also extend the life of the bait keeping it free from dust, dirt and other contaminates.

Bait acceptance for mice is very good and usually with anticoagulant bait you will not encounter a shyness. Single feed rat bait will work effectively because typically they will not revisit the bait station and will return to their normal food source after the initial poisoning. This helps keep bait cost down and effectiveness up.

No matter how good the rat bait is means nothing if the mice do not visit the location of the stations. Therefore the location of the bait station is critical, so follow basic guideline of rodent behavior when finding a location for the bait. Make sure the bait station is big enough so that the mouse can enter, this is not a problem if you are purchasing a professional station, only if you are trying to construct your own.

The majority of stations will address all of the necessary needs and the mouse bait will be ingested from the stations. Always follow the directions and safety precautions when using a rodenticide that information is there for a reason, to make it as effective and safe as possible. User need to keep in mind that this is a pesticide and has the potential to seriously harm pets and livestock if not used according to recommendations.


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