Norway Rats In New Jersey: What You Should Know

Norway rat on a wooden ledge
There are many upsides to living in New Jersey. One upside is that visiting family across the state doesn’t take that long. One downside is that our population density is higher than most other states, with 1,020 people, on average, every square mile. Now, this in and of itself is not a bad thing. What makes it bad is that rodents such as Norway rats thrive in areas with more people. The good news is that you don’t have to tolerate these pests in or around your home. Here are some things you should know, including strategies to keep Norway rats outside where they belong.

What Are Norway Rats?

Norway rats, despite their large size, are the most common species of home-invading rats around the world. Identify one of these rodents by its heavy body, blunt muzzle, and long scaly tail. A typical Norway rat has brown fur with scattered black hairs and a grey-to-white underside. As for length, adults can grow to be upwards of 11 inches long.

How Norway Rats Invade Homes 

All rodents are equipped with sharp and strong front incisor teeth. A Norway rat’s front teeth are stronger than most. This is shown by the way they chew through materials like aluminum and soft concrete. These pests regularly use this talent to break into homes. If a hole, gap, or crack in your home’s exterior is large enough, these pests will not need to use their teeth to get indoors but will rather just squeeze inside. Something to keep in mind with this is that Norway rats will not just chew through any wall. They need a reason. Most often their reason for breaking into homes is a warm or cool breeze or the smell of food coming out of a gap or crack.

Are Norway Rats Dangerous?

Have you ever heard of the bubonic plague, also known as the black death? It was a disease that resulted in the death of millions of people. One thing that made this disease so deadly was how it was spread by fleas riding on the backs of rats. In modern times, rats still carry dangerous pests like fleas and ticks into homes. These parasites also carry their own list of harmful bacteria, pathogens, and parasites. You may contract a rat-born disease from interacting with its fecal matter/urine or by consuming food that has been contaminated.

The Best DIY Strategies To Keep Out Norway Rats

There are many methods people use to keep rats out of their homes. Here are some of the best tips and tricks our experts recommend homeowners around New Jersey use:

  • Fill in holes, gaps, and cracks around your home’s exterior foundation, using a caulking gun and some steel wool.
  • Address damage to your home’s siding, roofline, and chimney.
  • Trim back bushes and tree branches five feet from your home’s exterior.
  • Keep your yard free of clutter and debris.
  • Clean your home regularly.
  • Fix leaks and broken gutters.
  • Eliminate sources of water buildup.

What To Do About Norway Rats If They Invade

Few creatures are as challenging to remove from properties as Norway rats. To help you manage your rat problems, let the experts at Heritage Pest Control lend you a hand. We will evaluate your property for rodents, put industrial-grade traps down to capture them, and put in place long-term prevention strategies to make sure rats stay out in the future.

Contact us today to get a quote for your home or to schedule it for an inspection. Our technicians will walk you through our residential pest control options and help you find an answer that fits your needs.

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