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Rat and Mouse Control - Greater Birmingham, Alabama

Commensal Rodent Species Common in Alabama

An infrared picture of a rat walking upside-down on a floor joist

Rid-A-Critter has high-tech infrared imaging equipment to help detect stealthy rodents.

There are many species of rodents, but only three of them are commonly encountered as "pests" in Alabama: the roof rat, the Norway rat, and the house mouse. This chart can help you tell the three species apart.

Roof rats are slender, athletic, and skilled at climbing. They're very common in Alabama, and are usually found in attics and walls of homes (although they can live pretty much anywhere near a source of food and water).

Norway rats are stockier than roof rats and usually live in burrows, basements, crawl spaces, and other areas close to the ground. They can climb very well when necessary, however; so like their cousins the roof rats, they can live pretty much anywhere.

House mice are small and slender and can be found almost anywhere. They have poor vision, so they especially like tight places where they can feel their way around using their whiskers and special body hairs. They don't need to drink free water, so basically they can live anywhere close to food and where they feel cozy and safe from predators.

(A few other rodents, such as squirrels and flying squirrels, are a bit higher on the rodent social scale and are considered "nuisance wildlife.")

Rodent exterminators and public health biologists refer to the roof rat, Norway rat, and house mouse as "commensal rodents," meaning that they "eat from the same table" as we do, or in other words, they live in close proximity to us and eat the same stuff as we do.

This tendency to live in close proximity to humans is a big part of the reason why rats and mice are important public health pests. Rodents are involved in the transmission of a whole bunch of diseases, and their closer they live to humans, the easier it is for most of these diseases to be transmitted.

Public Health Importance of Rat and Mouse Control

A rat exterminator in a crawl space in Birmingham, Alabama, barely visible among the pipes and debris

Doing rat control in Birmingham is a dirty job, but someone has to do it.

Rats and mice are among the most important public health pests, being directly involved in the transmission of many diseases, and indirectly involved in many more. In fact, the rat is believed to have been the first animal specifically identified as a disease-bearing pest, with references dating back to biblical times.

Aside from contaminating food and living spaces with their droppings, urine, and shed fur, rats are hosts for a wide variety of insect and other parasite disease vectors. They also serve as reservoirs for many diseases that their parasites spread including plague, Lyme disease, and many others.

Like rats, mice also carry diseases. In fact, despite their small size, mice can actually be more important disease vectors than rats. Mice are smaller than rats and can get through smaller openings, have a smaller home range, don't require free water in their diets, and most often live within a few feet of their food sources. This means that mice are actually more likely than rats to come in contact with humans (or more commonly, our food).

Some of the more notable diseases transmitted by rats and mice include:

Plague. This is the disease that rodents are famous for spreading, of course, seeing as how it wiped out a large part of Europe on several occasions. The bacteria that cause plague, Yersenia pestis, are usually transmitted to humans by fleas that carry the bacterium from an infected rodent to the human. But they can also be spread by handling an infected animal.

Hantavirus. There are several strains of hantavirus, all of which are spread by the droppings or urine of rodents or by coming in contact with infected animals. Exposure can lead to the development of Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome, a serious and potentially fatal respiratory disease.

Lymphocytic Chorio-meningitis (LCM). LCM is a serious neurological disease that is spread by breathing dust that has been contaminated with the droppings or urine of rodents, or by coming in contact with nesting materials or other contaminated items.

Some other rodent-borne diseases include leptospirosis, murine typhus, salmonella, rat-bite fever, tularemia, Lyme disease, and many, many others.

Economic Importance of Rodent Control

In addition to their public health importance, rats and mice are serious economic pests, as well. Among the ways that rats and mice cause economic harm are:

Direct Damage to Property. Rats and mice are gnawers, and they'll gnaw on pretty much anything that's convenient -- including both buildings themselves and stored belongings like shoes, clothing, books, and so forth. They also stain and damage items with their urine and droppings.

Damage to Stored Food, Feed, and Seed. Rats and mice consume millions of tons of stored food, feed, and seed every year, and contaminate millions of ton more with their urine, droppings, shed hairs, and other filth.

Fires. Rodents cause countless fires every year by gnawing on the insulation of electrical wiring. Our techs come across this almost every single day. It's a very serious problem.

Non-Chemical Rat and Mouse Control in Alabama

Rid-A-Critter is a bit unusual in that we specialize in non-chemical rat and mouse extermination. We trap the rodents that are in your home, and then seal them out permanently. This is called "rodent exclusion" or "rodent-proofing," and it's an entirely different way of dealing with rodent problems than most people are familiar with. We believe that it's also a much better, more modern way of handling rodent problems.

Most mouse and rat exterminators use poison bats as their primary rat control tools. They place the bait in burrow, in walls or ceilings, in bait boxes along runways, etc. to kill the rats and mice. Eventually the rodents find the bait; and a few days after that, they die. Sounds like a plan, right? Well, we don't like that plan. Here's why.

Non-Chemical Rodent Control is Safer. When you use poison baits, there's always the chance of poisoning some animal that you didn't want harmed, such as a pet or another non-target animal.

Our Rodent Control Methods are Environmentally Friendly. Most rodenticides exhibit something called secondary toxicity, which basically means that the poisoned rodent's carcass becomes poisonous. So if, for example, a hawk eats a poisoned rat, the hawk could be poisoned, as well. Our non-poisonous rodent control system eliminates that risk.

No Risk of Dead Rodents Stinking Up the Place. With our non-chemical approach to rodent control, the rodents in your home are trapped and removed, and then your home is made rodent-proof. That means there's no chance of a poisoned rat or mouse dying and rotting away inside a wall or ceiling.

Long-Term Money Savings. Our non-chemical rodent control system is designed to make your house rodent-proof, meaning that once it's done, it's really done. You don't have to pay a rodent exterminator to show up every month to refill the poison bait stations -- for the rest of your life.

In short, our unique, non-chemical rodent control system is safer, more environmentally friendly, and more permanent than old-fashioned rat and mouse extermination methods that rely on poisons.

Rodent Control Gallery

Here are some pictures of rodent control jobs that we've done in Birmingham and throughout our Metro Birmingham, Alabama service area.

Rat and Mouse Extermination Pictures:

For more information about rodent control or any of our quality services, please call us today for an on-site inspection and consultation.

 

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Brown Rat Chew Hole through a Crawl Space Door at a House in Talladega, Alabama
by Webmaster
Jun 27, 2019 10:50:15 am.

Typical Roof Rat Entry Gap into a House in Homewood, Alabama
by Webmaster
Jun 20, 2019 12:30:40 pm.

Man-Made Rat Entry Hole into a House in Hoover, Alabama
by Webmaster
Jun 14, 2019 10:32:47 am.

A Missing Brick Allowed Rats into a House in Birmingham, Alabama
by Webmaster
Jun 13, 2019 12:35:44 pm.

Love it when a really good song comes on the radio in between stops. Gets me a little squirrelly. Lol Have a Good Friday everyone.
by Jason Arruda
May 31, 2019 11:48:33 am.

Out seeing our wonderful clients in the pest control industry that refers us for wildlife (rats, bats, snakes, squirrels , bees, etc. Thank you from all of us!!
by Jason Arruda
May 30, 2019 01:45:40 pm.

Norway Rat Hole in a House in Birmingham, Alabama
by Webmaster
May 20, 2019 10:53:34 am.

Roof Rat Damage to a Baseball in an Attic in Heflin, Alabama
by Webmaster
May 15, 2019 10:12:28 am.

Typical Roof Rat Damage to a House in Birmingham, Alabama
by Webmaster
May 14, 2019 10:55:34 am.

Typical Roof Rat Entry Gap into a House in Hoover, Alabama
by Webmaster
May 13, 2019 11:14:30 am.

Norway Rat Entry Hole into a Brick House in Birmingham, Alabama
by Webmaster
May 09, 2019 09:55:12 am.

Great day in Valdosta. I helped one of my clients customer with a honey bee problem and set them up for our technicians to quote extraction.
by Jason Arruda
May 07, 2019 03:13:38 pm.

Obvious Roof Rat Rub Marks on a House in Birmingham, Alabama
by Webmaster
May 01, 2019 11:36:21 am.

Squirrels in my attic, rats in my crawl, bats flying in my house to snakes in my yard. Yes we can handle it all from Hiawassee to Valdosta .
by Jason Arruda
Apr 30, 2019 12:37:58 pm.

Typical Roof Rat Hole in a House in Birmingham, Alabama
by Webmaster
Apr 23, 2019 11:15:35 am.

How Roof Rats Got Into this House in Birmingham, Alabama
by Webmaster
Apr 18, 2019 10:03:56 am.

A Roof Rat Gnawed Through a Metal Rain Gutter in Hoover, Alabama
by Webmaster
Apr 17, 2019 10:07:33 am.

This Was the Roof Rat Entry Hole in a House in Hoover, Alabama
by Webmaster
Apr 16, 2019 10:15:56 am.

Roof Rat Burrows Through the Insulation in the Attic of a House in Birmingham, Alabama
by Webmaster
Apr 15, 2019 09:26:29 am.

Awesome day in Macon Ga. visiting clients. South Ga. pest control companies are referring us more and more bat jobs. I explained that now is the season. Thank you for referring us
by Jason Arruda
Apr 04, 2019 02:36:39 pm.

Norway Rat Entry Hole in a House in Chelsea, Alabama
by Webmaster
Apr 01, 2019 11:44:56 am.

Well it was a great day in Alabama seeing my Pest Control clients that refer us. If you don’t know by now majority of Pest Control companies refer us for squirrels, raccoons, rats, bats, bees and more. Now it time to head back to Georgia.
by Jason Arruda
Mar 28, 2019 03:24:50 pm.

Excluding animals is a continuous task. That’s why our Warranty Division is always hard at work keeping those reoccurring, persistent, and pesky Critters out of your home. Have you let your Warranty coverage lapse?? Get caught up today !!
by Tim McDavid
Mar 28, 2019 09:29:04 am.

Norway Rat Burrow Outside a House in Birmingham, Alabama
by Webmaster
Mar 15, 2019 10:57:00 am.

In Columbus Ga today meeting new clients.
by Jason Arruda
Mar 14, 2019 12:45:31 pm.

Obvious Evidence of a Rat Problem in an Attic in Birmingham, Alabama
by Webmaster
Feb 27, 2019 11:28:42 am.

Visiting clients in Albany Ga. on this Presidents Day. Be safe!
by Jason Arruda
Feb 18, 2019 11:52:47 am.

Had a good day yesterday!!! Quoted several houses in the Birmingham area with gray squirrels. Got a couple squirrel quotes in Birmingham today. Then off to Pell City to quote a customer with bats in their game room, attic, and walls.
by Chris Scott
Feb 12, 2019 08:08:55 am.

Wow, this warm weather has these bat calls on the rise. Bats are gonna be out early with this warm weather and early spring.
by Jason Arruda
Feb 06, 2019 11:57:56 am.

Rats are a year round problem critter we work with. We solve many rat problems each month. If you or someone you know has a rat problem, we are the best around. We will protect your home and family against rodents. Call for a free estimate.
by Richard Adcock
Feb 01, 2019 12:13:29 pm.

Near Perfect Rat Hole in a House in Birmingham, Alabama
by Webmaster
Jan 29, 2019 10:49:38 am.

Well it was a good Monday seeing clients in Carrollton, Dallas, Rockmart and Bremen Ga. today. Time to head home. Be safe everyone.
by Jason Arruda
Jan 28, 2019 04:25:42 pm.

The Birmingham, Alabama office of Rid-A-Critter provides non-chemical rat and mouse extermination in Birmingham, Alabama and the the entire Metro Birmingham area including Anniston, Bessemer, Brighton, Chelsea, Fairfield, Heflin, Homewood, Hoover, Hueytown, Irondale, Jasper, Leeds, Midfield, Moody, Mountain Brook, Oxford, Pell City, Trussville, Valdosta, Vestavia, and their surrounding areas.

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