Pest of the month The Brown Rat

The Brown Rat,

Brown rats are ground-based and frequently found in burrows. But like many aspects of rat behaviour, there is an opposite. This does not mean that they cannot, or do not climb, and enter premises via roof spaces etc. In fact, they are excellent climbers.

Burrows are located near to food and water sources to reduce the time that has to be spent out in the open and vulnerable.

The brown rat is also known as the sewer rat. The sewers offer an environment protected from predators, relatively stable and with a constant food source (human faeces and food waste).

However, migration from the sewers to above ground occurs after flooding due to heavy rainfall or disturbance, eg damage (which may be caused by the rats in the first place). This migration results in a new infestation above ground. Alternatively, rats may travel to and from the sewer system each day. In urban areas, new rat infestations are often associated with defective drains.

When rodent activity is persistent despite a comprehensive baiting programme then the sewer system should be inspected as an ongoing source of the rats. In central urban areas, it has been reported that 60-70% of infestations are related to sewer/drainage defects. In some cases, rats may migrate seasonally, returning to the sewers during the winter months to avoid the harsher conditions. Rats may also leave sewers due to overpopulation.

In conclusion, rat behaviour is complex and knowledge of this behaviour is an essential tool in the toolkit of pest controllers, so if you have a problem with Brown Rats or any other pest please feel free to get in touch.

Contact us if you have any concerns regarding any pests. We can offer free advice and free quotes.

Covering, Bury St Edmunds, Newmarket, Cambridge, Mildenhall, Red Lodge Brandon, Lakenheath, Barton Mills, Great Barton, Fornham St Martin, Ely and neighbouring villages