Everything is calm and the kids and pets are finally asleep, and then it starts. You hear scratching noises in the attic. The noise goes away for a few seconds, so you think you may be hearing things, but then you hear it again, and again. Now you can’t sleep.
What could possibly be causing these noises in the attic at night? Roof rats! If you have been hearing noises from your attic, there is a good chance that you may be dealing with a rodent infestation.
Roof Rats In Attics
Roof rats love getting on your roof and they also love getting inside it. Especially in the winter when they are looking for shelter. But what could they possibly want from your attic? That insulation that keeps your family warm at night also keeps roof rats warm at night!
Roof rats are easy to identify because of their long tails, which are longer than the length of their body. They are smaller than Norway rats and measure between 13 to 18 inches in length including their tail. If you see long cylindrical droppings on the insulation or air conditioning ducts, it is likely from roof rats in the attic.
Roof rats are experts at getting into attics. They are great climbers and are often referred to as palm rats due to the prevalence of these types of rats in palm trees. They can cause damage to your attic by chewing through electrical wires and cables, which can result in fires if they are not removed from the attic. Roof rats also contaminate insulation in the attic with their feces and urine, making them extremely destructive to your home.
What Do Rats In The Attic Sound Like?
What do rats in the attic actually sound like? Is there a way to differentiate between rats and other rodents.
Since rats are nocturnal, you’ll likely hear the noises in the attic at night when they are most active. Rats can be very fast so you may hear it quickly scurrying across the attic. Since they prefer to follow the same runways over time, you may frequently hear the noises in the same area of the attic. If you hear scratching sounds in the attic, it’s because roof rats like to create nests. While they nest in the attic, they get food and water from outside so they leave and re-enter the attic throughout the night which can create noise in certain areas.
How To Catch A Rat In The Attic
You may be wondering how to catch a rat in the attic at this point. First thing’s first, there is more than one rat up there. Putting up one snap trap just isn’t going to do it. Often we’ve found there to be between 5-10 roof rats total in and around a home by the time you hear noises in the attic at night. Also, roof rats are a suspicious bunch. You could put some tasty peanut butter on a trap up in an attic full of roof rats and it won’t be touched if it’s not placed properly.
Rats often stick to their runways, usually with one side of their body along a wall or wood, often on the edges of the attic, near the roofline. Rats also like to run along wires in the attic.
A good way to spot their trails is to look for rub marks (greasy black spots created by their dirty bodies rubbing against things repeatedly.) Roof rats also urinate and drop feces randomly along their runways, making their detection relatively easy.
If the rats in the attic set your traps off without being caught, they will become trap shy and avoid your traps in the future. So make sure to place them properly along the runways the first time. Since rats often jump over traps, it helps to put two or three in a row.
Let Us Remove Rats From Your Attic
Now that you know what roof rats sound like, you may know there is in fact a rodents in your attic. But what next? Sure, you could go to the store and buy some rat traps and poison, but it will be much easier if you simply contact us.
Pestcheck Pest Control is your local rodent control and pest control company in the lower mainland.