Rodents can be a huge problem for any homeowner. Getting to pinpoint the signs of a rodent infestation early can save you time, money, and a lot of hassle in the long run.
Some common signs that give away a rodent infestation are the presence of droppings, gnaw marks, and tracks. You may also hear noises coming from your walls or ceilings or see rodents running around.
13 Rodent Infestation Signs to Watch Out For
If you’ve ever had the misfortune of dealing with a rodent infestation, you know how difficult it can be to get rid of them.
And even if you’ve never had an issue with rodents, it’s important to be aware of the signs of an infestation so you can take steps to prevent one from occurring.
Here are 9 telltale signs that there may be rodents lurking in your home:
1) You Hear Strange Noises Coming from Your Walls
If you hear strange noises coming from your walls, it’s one of the most clear-cut signs that you have a rodent problem.
Rodents are nocturnal creatures, so most of their activity will take place at night. If you hear scratching, gnawing, or scurrying noises coming from your walls or ceiling, it’s a good indication that there are rodents in your home.
Rodents typically make these noises as they’re trying to create openings in your walls so they can enter and exit your home easily. Additionally, they could be nesting in your walls, which is why you hear the noises in the first place.
2) You See Droppings Around Your Home
Another telltale sign of a rodent infestation is the presence of droppings around your home. Rodents generally prefer to stay hidden, so if you see droppings in plain sight, it means that they feel comfortable enough to be out in the open. Rodent droppings look like small, dark pellets and can usually be found in areas where food is present.
They may also be present in drawers, cabinets, and pantries since these are all areas where rodents typically look for food. If you see droppings in any of these areas, it’s a good indication that you have a rodent problem.
As an added bonus, droppings can also be dangerous to your health as they can contain harmful bacteria and viruses.
Inhaling dust that has been contaminated with rodent droppings can also lead to respiratory problems. For all of these reasons, it’s important to clean up any droppings you see and take steps to prevent rodents from entering your home.
3) You Find Holes in Food Packaging or Containers
Mice and other rodents are notorious for their love of food. If you find holes in food packaging, it’s a strong sign that rodents have been helping themselves to your snacks.
To confirm your suspicions, try setting up a trap near the affected area. If you catch a mouse, that’s definitive proof of an infestation.
4) You Notice Gnaw Marks on Woodwork
One of the first things you might notice if you have a rodent infestation is gnaw marks on woodwork. Mice and rats have sharp incisors that they use for gnawing, and they will often chew on wood beams, door frames, and cabinets.
The gnaw marks are usually quite distinctive, so if you see them, it’s a good indication that you have some unwelcome guests in your home.
5) You Find Nesting Materials
If you find nesting materials like shredded paper or fabric, it’s a surefire sign that rodents are nesting in your home.
Mice and rats will use any soft material they can find to build their nests, so if you see any of these materials lying around, it’s a good indication that these pests have taken up residence in your home.
Nests are usually located in the dark, hidden areas like closets, attics, and crawl spaces.
6) You Smell a Musky Odor
Another sign of a rodent infestation is the presence of a musky odor. This odor is caused by the rodents themselves and their urine and droppings.
The smell will be most noticeable in areas where there is a high concentration of rodents, such as attics, crawl spaces, and basements.
Additionally, rodents also produce a strong, musky odor that can quickly fill up a room. If you notice this odor, it’s a good indication that you have a rodent problem.
7) You See Dust or Soil Tracks Around Your Home
You may not think much about the dust and dirt that accumulates in your home every day. However, for a rodent, these tiny particles are like a roadmap, leading them straight to their next meal.
If you start to notice little dirt tracks around your baseboards or on your countertops, it’s a good indication that you have some uninvited guests.
These dust or soil tracks are usually most evident in areas where food is present. So, if you see them in your kitchen or pantry, it’s a good indication that rodents have been helping themselves to your food.
They could be coming in through tiny cracks and crevices, so it’s important to seal up any openings to prevent them from getting inside.
8) Your Lights Start Flickering or Dimming for No Reason
If your lights start flickering or dimming for no reason, it could be a sign that rodents are chewing on your electrical wires. This is a serious problem as it could lead to an electrical fire.
If you notice this happening, check for gnaw marks on your wires and call an exterminator immediately if you suspect a rodent infestation.
9) Urine Stains and Smears
Another sign of a rodent infestation is the presence of urine stains and smears. Rodents will often urinate in areas where they travel, so if you see any stains or smears, it’s a good indication that these pests are present. These stains are usually reddish-brown in color and have a strong, musky odor.
Urine stains are most likely to be found in areas where rodents travel, such as along baseboards and under appliances.
Unexplained noises, gnaw marks, and musky odors are just some of the signs that you may have a rodent infestation.
Understanding these signs can help you identify an infestation early on and take steps to get rid of these pests. If you have noticed one or more of these signs, baits and traps may help to get rid of the rodents. If you are unsure about how to proceed, call a professional exterminator for assistance.