Rodents can cause great damage to our homes and gardens. The most common ones are rats and mice which infest our homes during wintertime. They are true parasites that can transmit many pathogens to humans and animals. Therefore, we need to find the right way for their removal.
First of all you need to know the difference between a rat and mouse.
Mice are small rodents having a gray or brown color. They commonly appear in isolated and comfortable places in the house. On the other hand, rats are larger in size and proliferate in urban areas, peri-urban areas and agricultural areas. The weight of the black rat and the brown rat is not over 500 grams and often dwells in attics, cellars or in the surrounding facilities.
Why do they come to our houses?
Due to the cold weather outside they are on the look-out for hot places to find shelter and as well as food. Their smell for all kinds of foods is highly developed and because of that they are commonly found in our homes and kitchens. They thrive on foods like wheat, flour, bread, sweets or pet food.
These rodents find their refuge in our homes by making ball nests 15 to 20 cm in diameter with paper or plastic bags behind the fridge, under the radiator, under the sofa, or even under the bed.
How to remove rodents from our homes and prevent their colonization?
In order to prevent their fast colonization we need to act quickly as they can have 4 to 8 litters each year. Although most of us turn to calling the exterminator companies they can be expensive and most of them use harmful chemicals which are also harmful for the human health and as well as for our pets. There are some natural remedies that can help us with this issue. But, first we should follow certain steps before we use them.
Steps of Getting Rid of Rodents
Inspection of the house
The best time for inspecting your home if it is infested by these pests is during dusk when everything is calm and quiet. Take a flashlight and start checking the holes and potential entrances for rodent marks like feces or small pieces of paper.
When you find the first signs of rodents, you should implement deep cleaning by removing any trace of food in the entries which has been brought by the mice.
Cover every hole in your home by using steel, wool, metal, concrete or aluminum foil. The aluminum foil is the scariest for the rodents and because of that they are going away from it like crazy. But, make sure not to use materials like wood or rubber because they are easily degraded by mice and rats.
The smell of peppermint is refreshing for the humans, but rodents cannot stand it. Hence, if you want to drive away rodents from your homes dip cotton balls in peppermint oil and put them in places where rodents hang out or pass, like the entrances. Plus, these cotton balls will offer the pleasant freshness in your home.
The next step is sprinkling baking soda in areas where mice release their feces or where are there are signs of them. When the mice ingest these balls the baking soda will prevent the produced gas inside the animal from being released, and in that way causing death. But, if you have a pet in your home, put baking soda in a container with a hole, and in that way secure it that it is not ingested by your pet.
Bars of soap
Scented soaps offer the same effect as peppermint; therefore they are the ideal repellent. All you need to do is to put them around doors, windows and in each possible opening where rodents enter the house.
The old recipe for homes free from rodents is the cat. This animal is a true predator that often catches them, but in most cases they do not eat them. But, your cat may be poisoned if the mouse has ingested a toxic product.
Do not leave food around your home.
Elevate the garbage bin from the ground over 30 centimeters.
Make sure to clean your yards and gardens from lumps and old tires which can turn into ideal nests for rodents.
If you keep animals like chickens, rabbits, or horses, you should keep them in a protected enclosure from rodents and regularly clean their shelters.
You can as well as grow plants in your gardens that rodents do not like, including the imperial crown, eucalyptus or peppermint.