Get to Know the Norway Rat | The Ultimate Unwanted Rodent

In Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan, we have many rodents that most people are familiar with; however, the Norway rat is one that we often don’t think about. If you have a Norway rat infestation in your home or business, you will want to resolve it as soon as possible. Norway rats carry disease and can cause serious damage to homes, buildings, and other structures. We are going to help you get to know the Norway rat and to better understand why they are considered an unwanted rodent.

What is the Norway rat?

Let’s get to know the Norway rat. The Norway rat, sometimes referred to as the brown rat, prefers to live almost anywhere that humans are. Short, dense fur covers the Norway rat’s body except, for the nose, tail and ears, which are bald. They are usually gray or brown and can reach lengths of 16 inches. Their tail can be just as long as their body. They are large rodents that may weigh in excess of 500 grams.

Norway rats are diggers and burrowers so they are attracted to areas where they can do so. The rats often make their homes in a variety of habitats, from forests and open fields, gardens or yards with high grass, to sewers and buildings. These rats may build extravagant burrows with chambers for food storage and nesting.

According to the Smithsonian’s National Zoo & Conservation Biology Institute, Norway rats are foragers and are able to survive on a huge range of foods. One study of a rat’s stomach contents revealed over 4,000 different items. In urban areas, rats live mostly on discarded human food, but may also become pests, eating food from cupboards or crops from fields. In rural areas, these rats eat a variety of plants as well as whatever protein sources they can find.

How do Norway rats get into homes and businesses?

Like other Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan pests and rodents, the Norway rat can find its way into your home or business. A Norway rat will enter buildings in search of food and shelter. This rodent will enter through gaps and crevices as small as ½ inch. They often take advantage of foundation cracks, holes from utility and plumbing lines, crawlspace doors, drains, vents, and gaps under doorways.

With businesses, it is common for the Norway rat to make their way in through open doors, loading docks, and uncovered ventilation. Companies such as restaurants and warehouses are especially appealing to the rat because of their abundance of food sources. Just having scraps in the office break room can draw these pests indoors and once they are inside, you can really get to know the Norway rat.

Are Norway rats dangerous?

Norway rats can cause many health issues and may be carriers of various diseases that can transfer to humans through rat urine and feces. A Norway rat may also carry fleas that can pass on other serious diseases.

Along with the health risks a Norway rat infestation may bring to your home or business, they also can cause major structural damage. These rats gnaw through wires, furniture and other belongings, contaminate food, and can cause destruction to home and building foundations with their burrows and nests.

How can I prevent Norway rats?

Now that we have reviewed what this rodent is, you are probably thinking that you don’t want to get to know the Norway rat up close and personal and want to keep them out of your home or business. Below are some tips to help you deter these rats from your home or business:

  • Store food in containers with lids
  • Keep your garbage cans closed and emptied regularly
  • Check windows and doors to ensure they close tightly with no gaps
  • Dryer vents should have screen covers
  • Ensure pet food is off the ground and in sealed containers
  • Remove pet feces from your yard and property
  • Seal holes where power lines and water enter your home or business
  • Fix plumbing leaks and any other water sources near your home that can create standing water

If you find your Northwest Ohio or Southeast Michigan home or business with a Norway rat infestation, call Delving Pest Control.

Delving will come out and inspect your structure to identify the level of infestation and recommend corrective action plans to eradicate your rodent problem fast. Trust Delving Pest Control to eliminate your unwanted rodents discreetly.