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Riviera Pest and Falconry covers all aspects of pest control in both domestic and commercial properties in Devon.

Rat Control

There are 2 main species of Rats here in the UK. The Brown Rat (Norwegian or Common Rat) is the larger of the rats in the UK measuring about 20-24cm, without counting the tail. It has a blunt nose, small hair-covered ears and a tail that is shorter than its body. The Black Rat (or Ship Rat) is shorter, has a pointed nose, large, almost hairless ears, a more slender body and a long thin tail that is longer than its body.
The Black Rat is far less common than the Norwegian Rat but can be found at some of our ports. Female Rats can reproduce every 6 weeks and have a litter of around 8-10 pups. The pups can mature in around 3 months and have a gestation period of around 3 weeks. Female Rats are able to mate soon after giving birth so its easy to see how quickly an infestation can take hold.

Rats can carry many nasty diseases, which can spread to humans, normally through rats’ urine or body coming into contact with food preparation areas. These include:

  • Leptospirosis (Weil’s disease)
  • Salmonella
  • Listeria
  • Toxoplasma gondii
  • Hantavirus

Signs of a rat infestation:

One of the most common signs of rats is their droppings, which are dark and pellet-shaped and around 1-2cm in length. These can be clustered in certain areas, as rats often create latrine areas. Chewed materials especially on food packaging are another clear sign of a Rat infestation. Rats will often use wall cavities to get about so noises in the walls/loft will almost certainly indicate a number of Rats in the property. Visual sightings are common and usually a clear indication of a substantial infestation.

TREATMENT: Treatment consists of a thorough initial survey to try and ascertain the reason they are present and identify how they are getting into the property. There are a number of ways to treat an infestation but the survey will go a long way in determining the method used. If Rodenticide is used then great care is taken to prevent children and pets from getting access to it and reducing the effect of any secondary poisoning.