You’ve heard the stories around the neighborhood that a couple people having been having rodent problems. But it never crosses your mind that these pests are close by and your house could be next. Maybe you hear squeaking noises one night or you notice some minor gnawing damage, but you don’t let it bother you. Then, it happens — you are in the garage one night to grab something from your car and you see a small, furry animal scurry underneath a pile of boxes in the corner. Was it a rat? A mouse? Does it matter? Is there a difference anyway? Here’s how to pick out a mouse from a rat, and why you need to get them out of your house immediately.
Notable Features of Each
The dead giveaway is the tail. Rats have a long, scaly, hairless tail that is hard to look past. Even if you only see the animal out of the corner of your eye, you will likely notice the tail if it is a rat. Mice can have a hairless tail, but it is shorter and isn’t quite as light-colored.
Mice also tend to be on the smaller side, growing only to six or seven inches maximum, with big ears. By contrast, rats can be two or three times larger than mice and have proportionally smaller ears.
Mice are known to be inquisitive creatures. They will certainly scuttle out of the way if you approach them, but on the whole, they are more comfortable being around humans and exploring homes. On the other hand, rats lean towards the cautious side. They have become accustomed to the threat of humans and are craftier at avoiding discovery and traps.
If you never see the rodents, but only the damage they cause, it would be hard to tell whether you have mice or rats. Perhaps the only indicator of one or the other would be the greasy marks that rats can leave on floors and walls. Other than that, both will gnaw on any material in sight, cause damage with their droppings, multiply their population rapidly, and conduct their primary mischief at night.
Whether you have a mice problem or a rat problem, it’s no problem for the experts at Critter Control® of Tampa to take care of. We have spent decades removing nuisance rodents from homes and are confident our methods will work for you too. Dreading cleaning up after the pests? Don’t worry about it, we will take care of that too. Call us today for a free initial inspection at 813-328-6646.