Why Does the Cold Weather Attract Rodents?
The temperatures have dipped a bit in Florida in recent weeks. And while that’s a welcome break from our usual warm weather, the colder temps may also bring some unwelcome activity in and around your home. You may notice more rodents are out and about this time of year. Squirrels, rats, and mice are among the most likely rodents we’ll see in Florida. What makes them more visible than usual and what can you do about it? We can explain.
Winter and rodent activity
It may surprise you that rodents are active in the colder months. You might think that rats, mice and others hibernate during the winter.
But rodents are actively seeking warmth and food. Food is harder to find outside during the winter. And as you likely know already, squirrels will come out on chilly mornings to search for their next meal. You may find them roaming your lawn early in the day. Other vermin, including mice and rats, are attracted to our homes for warmth — and for the areas where we keep our food.
How do you know if you have a rodent problem?
Signs that rodents may be in your home
If you think you may have an issue, here are a few signs that may indicate rodent activity:
- Noises in your walls or attic. These may be signs of mice, rats, or squirrels.
- Droppings. Look for these pellets in cabinets, your attic, and the floor of your garage.
- Bite marks on wood, boxes, cardboard or paper products, walls, and wires. Also look for shredded paper items.
How to keep rodents away from your home
- Minimize water sources. Fix any spigot that may be leaking; empty any buckets or other containers – including trash bins – that may fill up with rain water.
- Place your food in air-tight containers and clean up messes immediately.
- Trim any tree limbs that would give rodents easy access to your roof.
- If you have pets, make sure you feed them indoors only. Pet bowls left outside will attract unwanted animals and pests.
- Seal your garbage in trash bags, and place them in a secure bin outside your home. Doing so will make your home less attractive to rodents as well as raccoons.
- If you keep your garage door open – like when you’re working on a project – make a quick inspection of the inside of the garage before closing it. You want to make sure you haven’t invited in any critters.
- Walk around the perimeter of your house and look at your soffits. Repair any damage, particularly openings that shouldn’t be there. Even very tiny openings can give rodents easy entry to the warmth of your attic.
The EPA also has tips for finding and preventing rodent infestations.
Choose JD Smith for your rodent control
- Sealing gaps, holes, or breaches bigger than a quarter inch
- Eliminating the pest associated with rodents
- Installing roof vent shields that will help keep out rats, mice, and squirrels while also preventing leaks