Getting rid of disease-carrying mice and rats professionally is the best way to keep these pests at bay. You may have spotted a lone mouse and are wondering if one mouse is serious enough to call in the professionals. Well if you see one think mouse infestation.
Why Getting Rid of Mice Professionally Matters
If you have spotted a lone mouse, it is almost guaranteed others are in proximity. The failure rate for getting rid of vermin by using DIY methods is high. Rodent populations increase at an alarming speed, so it is best to tackle the problem immediately and professionally.
How 1 Mouse Pair Can Turn into an Infestation
Although the breeding season is relatively short (about three months of the year), female mice can still produce between five and ten litters a year. Their gestation period is only 19 – 21 days but can be extended by several days if the female is producing. Then comes a litter of 3 – 14 little mice.
Mice get sexually mature at a very young age¾about six weeks, with a bodyweight of just 25 grams. They continue growing in weeks after that until they reach a weight of between 40 – 50 grams. Mice are born without fur and are also born blind. They become fully furred at about ten days, and they open their eyes at 14 days.
That means within a span of three months, two mice can turn into hundreds. If one female mouse gives birth to a litter every 20 – 30 days, and it takes females in that litter 6 weeks before they can start reproducing, the knock-on effect can leave you with an epic infestation in a short amount of time.
What to Do to Protect Your Home and Business
Mice and rats carry diseases. If you suspect you have these vermin-carriers in and around your home or workplace, ending the problem before a full-blown infestation is essential. The best way to do this is by calling in expert pest control teams to guarantee a vermin-free environment.
Professional pest control companies will only use rodenticides as the very last resort and once the mice have been denied all food access. Pest control companies will take other factors into account, such as pets and young children or nearby wildlife, birds, and other considerations prior to treating mice and rats. The peace of mind of a rodent-free environment is only a phone call away.
It is a known fact that roof rats can enter homes and other structures through the smallest of openings, whether these are doors and windows that are not fitted properly, air vents that are not in good working condition or screens; they will find a way of getting into the smallest spaces.
By taking a couple of steps to reduce gaps in windows and doors and other spots that are easily accessible, you are already putting steps in place to reduce the rat population in and around your surroundings.
Take these measures to reduce the rat population:
- Seal all openings that are more than a cm with wood, mesh, caulk or similar
- Fit all doors and screens tightly or cover these with metal sheets
- Sewer pipes and drains should have covers that fit tightly to prevent access to these openings
A regular, thorough inspection is essential
to gauge whether there are rats and mice is important. The signs to
look out for are gnaw marks, droppings, grease marks, rat urine stains,
live or dead rats and mice and the noises they make.
Once established, it is a good idea to then embark on a plan of action such as calling in pest control experts.
Look out for these signs for roof rats:
- Gnawing holes – these are usually about 4 cms in diameter and will have rough edges. Roof rats like to chew on wood but can also be the cause of electrical wire damage and damaging the packaging of foodstuffs
– Roof rat droppings are usually about 6 mm to 12 mm in length, have a
capsule shape with blunt edges and usually shiny and black in appearance
although this largely depends on what the rats eat. Rat droppings are
in the region of about 3 x the size of that of mouse droppings
- Sighting and hearing rats – rodents are nocturnal creatures, therefore, if sighted during the daytime it means the infestation is severe
stains & odours – these appear as a line of fine drops or streaks
that can be spotted under ultraviolet lights or black light tool
– the runways of roof rats are smooth and impacted outdoors, plus they
are vegetation-free. Furthermore, roof rats leave a hind foot track plus
they drag their tails which leave a trail between their foot tracks.
- Grease marks – these usually appear along the walls next to the runways
While you are preventing future rat population growth through inspection, sanitation, and exclusion, you will also want to begin working towards the complete elimination of the population that is already present through the use of a professional pest control company.
Avoid mosquito, flea and spider bites during the hot summer months by taking a few preventative measures. Keep your home free of roaches and your roof free of birds, too, to ensure your entire environment is safe and clean for you and your family.
Prevention is always better than cure, so be sure that Rover and your cats are dewormed and de–flea on a regular basis; change your linen every week and vacuum the insides of your cupboards vigilantly to avoid any nasty surprises.
This is where the experts enter the equation – call in pest control services to pinpoint where roaches breed, to oust spiders that are dangerous, lurking in corners and other spots such as the garage and sheds, eradicate ant nests and get rid of pesky birds in the roof that also carry fleas and other bugs such as ticks.
Never scratch bites from fleas and mosquitoes, ants and flies (yes – these can administer nasty bites too), as this could lead to infection. Some preventative measures include covering arms and ankles, especially at night, and placing wire or gauze over doors and windows. Fans will also discourage flies and mosquitoes in the home.
Choose insect repellents from the wide range readily available from your pharmacy or supermarket which come in a variety of lotions, creams, sprays and patches.
Repellents do not prevent bee, wasp, yellow jacket and hornet stings. Choose light-coloured clothes over bright clothes and try not to wear heavy scents and perfumes that could attract stinging insects.
Pest control experts assist with other insects and pests including bats, wood borer insects, termites and rodents.
Furthermore, South Africa plays host to a multitude of snakes – your pest control experts will remove reptiles from your property safely.
Prevention is always better than cure; ensure your home is safe from infestations of every description by using expert pest control services.
A beautiful lawn is one that is lush and emerald green, and also completely free of weeds. Weeds are part of what happens in gardens and keeping your weeds under control can prove to be both difficult and costly, as well as downright annoying.
No matter how much effort you put into growing your flower beds and landscaping, your garden will never look good if your lawn is infested with weeds and patchy.
Here are ten things to do to grow a beautiful lawn
- Getting rid of weeds in South African gardens can be a relatively easy exercise as most weeds that invade our lawns are of the broad-leafy variety. The weather patterns have changed, and gardens have either been exposed to extremely dry spells or flooding. As a result, weeds have taken over many lawns and are practically impossible to get rid of.
- The only way to rid weeds in your garden is by calling in the pest control experts to assist. Once the lawn is free of weeds, taking care of your grass should be a lot easier.
- Avoid mowing your lawn prior to herbicide being applied to your lawn and always allow 24 hours to pass after applying any treatment of weeds.
- Destructive insects can destroy your lawn completely. Instead of going the DIY route to eradicate your lawn of destructive crickets and other insects call in pest control professionals to assist.
- Always consider the climate and the amount of sunlight the lawn will be exposed to and how much traffic the lawn will be submitted to when planting a lawn. Kikuyu is a popular choice for warm season grasses, followed by LM lawn, although Cynodon and Buffalo lawn is great for sunny areas and are hardy which means they are more tolerant to traffic and easy to maintain and establish.
- Mowing is perhaps one of the best ways to bring out the best in your lawn – if a lawn grows fast, it is a good idea to mow your grass at least twice a week.
- The biggest lawn care mistake made is by cutting the grass too short.
- It is important to never cut off more than 1/3 of the leaf blade in one mowing session.
- It is always important to keep the blades of the mower sharp.
- An easy way to tell if your lawn needs water is to walk on it – a healthy lawn is soft underfoot and if the lawn is crunchy in any way whatsoever and if it breaks then it means it should get more water.
Call in the experts to eradicate your lawn of weeds to ensure you have a lush, green lawn at all times.
Ladies – forget about getting your husbands to rid your home and the surroundings of rats and mice; instead, call in the experts to assist.
With climate change resulting in global warming, there has been an upsurge in the number of rodents in our environment.
Rats and mice are everywhere, and they cause havoc in our lives, carrying diseases such as hepatitis, jaundice, plague and salmonellosis. Additionally, they cause damage to buildings, electric wiring, furniture and other materials.
Rats nest in places such as trees, shrubs, food stores, ceilings and roofs as well as close to rubbish bins and dumps.
Rats start breeding as early as six weeks, as often as four times a year and have litters from between eight and ten babies being born every time! It should therefore not come as a surprise that the rat population is exploding causing infestations.
Rats transmit disease by a person having direct contact with them, their faeces and their urine. People can also become ill by consuming food and water that is contaminated with the faeces and urine of rats and mice, too.
Rats and mice are carriers of parasites including fleas, ticks and live, causing diseases including leptospirosis, Bartonella, food poisoning and plague which, as we know, can affect an entire population. Who can forget the Black Death, which was one of the biggest pandemics in human history, wiping out 200 million people in Eurasia?
Leptospirosis is caused by the urine of rats being in contact with any broken skin of a human or the ingestion of contaminated food.
Bartonella can infect healthy humans when they are bitten by fleas or ticks carried by rats. The disease is particularly harmful to HIV positive individuals who have long-term infections.
Rat bits is a worry in communities – particularly babies and young children when they are sleeping when they bite their noses, fingers or toes or other soft parts on their bodies.
The rat population needs to be discouraged in our communities, though, as getting rid of them is a temporary measure. People preparing food and washing pots in drains and disposing of food in catch pits will encourage the presence of rats and mice.
Scrap food needs to be separated from water and waste should be disposed of correctly. Rat infestations will only be eliminated if sources of food and water are unavailable to them on all levels. Try and get rid of sources of food and water as rats will never eat poison while there are other food sources readily available to them.
DIY eradication of rats and mice just won’t cut it – that is why it is imperative to call on the experts.
Living in Africa means that we live alongside a whole host of bugs inside and outside the home. Some insects are so problematic that the only way we can eradicate these is by calling on the experts to take care of the problem and for expert advice.
Predatory insects kill other insects and eat their victim’s bodies. Spiders, predatory beetles such as ladybird beetles, ant lions, ants, praying mantis, wasps, predatory flies, lacewings, predatory mites and nematodes are some significant predatory insects.
These insects are not only pretty to look at – they are pretty awesome little warriors in the garden, too.
Ladybugs can eat up to sixty problematic aphids in a single day and nurture and protect plants from destructive insects.
The praying mantis is a regal insect that cleans up the garden by killing insects that love to eat vegetables; it is a good idea to keep these little hard-working soldiers to be as they are hard at work keeping problematic insects away.
Spiders belong to the arachnid species and although many of us are afraid of these eight-legged creatures, they keep mosquitoes and other unwelcome insects under control. Obviously, there are some spider species that should not be left alone, such as the black widow spiders which are poisonous and could cause harm to humans and pets – call your specialist pest control expert to eradicate poisonous spiders.
Yes, they are minute, and yes, they are incredible at keeping other unpleasant and harmful bugs in check! This minuscule bug is responsible for the eliminations of caterpillars, whitefly and aphids – all in one tiny little insect.
Butterflies are beautiful and come in myriad shapes and colours. These lovely insects are excellent pollinators in orchards, vegetable gardens and flower gardens.
Ground beetles eat the seeds of weeds.
There is a whole host of beneficial insects out there. Encouraging beneficial insects into your garden is vital if you are to successfully grow organic fruit and vegetables. Helpful insects assist in controlling pests, rejuvenate the soil, and pollinate plants; all these are an essential function for many food plants to produce food.
Prevention is always better than cure – this is especially the case when avoiding bites and stings in and around the home.
Keeping your family home and garden safe and your family bite-free right throughout the year (and not only the hot summer months), is important, and the best way to do that as effectively as possible is by ensuring the house is not only pristinely clean from insects at all times, but that the garden does not harbour nasty nests of spiders, wasps, hornets and bees, as well as other creatures.
Play it safe by calling in the experts to assist.
To avoid you and your family being bitten; choose to go the non-toxic route by selecting alternatives rather than chemical products that could have an adverse effect on the health of you and your loved ones.
About mosquito repellents
- DEET is the main ingredient in commercial insect repellents (Diethyl-methyl-toluamide)
- It is extremely effective against insects
- It is a synthetic chemical which is a neurotoxin that could have possible long-term, negative effects
- Repellents that contain DEET should never ever be applied to infants under the age of two months of age
Instead of using repellents with DEET, use these natural alternatives
- The essential oils in Catnip are about 10 x more effective than DEET in repelling mosquitoes, spiders, bees, and flies
- Lavender oil and black pepper essential oils are commonly used as effective insect repellents – these are all best diluted in a carrier oil such as almond oil, apricot kernel oil or coconut oil
- Neem oil or neem seed oil is also more effective than DEET
There is no point in posing potential health threats to yourself and your loved ones. Call in the experts to avoid bites and stings and other health threats to ensure you live as bug-free an existence as possible.
Make today the first day of the rest of your life to enjoy a healthy and clean environment .
Although there are many different types of mice in South Africa there are two main species that are problematic. The two most common mice found are the House Mouse and the Field Mouse, but did you know that apart from humans, the striped mouse is perhaps the most common mammal in South Africa?
Striped Mouse (Rhabdormys Spec.)
This genus is so prolific because it can live in different habitats whether moist grasslands, desert regions, mountains and at the edge of forests.
The striped mouse got its name from its four characteristic dark stripes on its back, separated by three lighter stripes.
Field Mouse (Apodemes Sylvaticus)
Field mice hardly ever go inside buildings, unless they get cold during winter. These mice are often found in outbuildings and sheds where fruit, grain and vegetables are stored.
Suffice to say, they are a huge problem for farmers and businesses that operate in the agricultural sector.
The lifecycle of the Field Mouse
The lifespan of a field mouse is about two or three months, although they can survive up to twenty months in the wild, and two or more years in captivity.
The breeding season is usually between March and April to October and November. Gestation is in the region of 25 days. Survival of the young and adults is poor during the first half of the breeding season as adult males can become aggressive towards one another and to the young, who are then driven from the nest.
It is difficult to eradicate mice using DIY methods as they breed prolifically – a far better option is to call in the experts to rid your yard or farm areas of these pests. Professional advice and expertise are vital to keeping field mice in check.
House Mouse (Mus Musculus)
House Mice are active throughout the year, which means they can always become problematic.
The House Mouse has relatively small feet and a small head with large eyes and ears which distinguishes it from brown rats (Rattus Norvegicus).
The house mouse is usually ground living and burrowing, but often climbs, with its food preference being cereals. They can eat as much as 3g of food a day and can survive without any added water but will drink up to 3ml a day if their food is especially dry.
The lifecycle of the House Mouse
The House Mouse produces between four to sixteen young per litter between seven and eight times a year with a gestation period of three weeks.
Managing mice infestations using bait alone is not enough – improving living conditions and hygiene in general and calling in an expert pest control company is essential to keep these pests at bay.