Natural Rodent Control Defined
When some people think of natural rodent control, they think of any treatment method that does not utilize poisons. While some non-poison methods of rodent control can be described as natural, not all are. In this post we will examine natural rodent control methods as well as other non-poison rodent control.
Poison Free Rodent Control
There are many types of poison-free rodent control methods. Below are a few of the most common categories of poison-free rodent control.
- Mechanical Trapping
Rodent repellents come in many different forms and work in different ways. The concept of repellents is to make the area undesirable to the rodent and thus makes the rodent leave the area. These repellents work by smell, taste, or annoyance to evict the unwanted rodent.
Ultrasonic Rodent Repellents
Ultrasonic rodent repellents work by emitting a high frequency sound. This high frequency sound bothers the rodents and they leave the area. The ultrasonic rodent repellent requires electricity to run and must remain plugged into an outlet. Some emit the sound on a regular basis while others only emit sound when movement is detected.
I see ultrasonic rodent repellents on a lot of rodent control jobs. They have many drawbacks compared to some of the other methods we will discuss. First, since they must be plugged into an outlet, you are limited as to where they can be placed. Second, the high frequency sound does not travel very far and does not travel into walls. This really limits the effectiveness. Lastly, rodents can become desensitized to the noise over time and ignore it completely.
My thoughts on Ultrasonic Repellents
When we are called out to a rodent treatment and the homeowner has ultrasonic repellents installed, it usually means the repellent did not work. I have seen people use these ultrasonic repellents for rodents, bats, and other larger wildlife. In my experience, these repellents should be considered a short term option. Over time the rodents become desensitized to them or they move to another area of the home where the sound is not heard.
Natural Rodent Repellents
Some types of liquid based spray repellents are considered natural. These natural rodent repellents use mint, peppermint, or spicy tastes to deter rodents. Since rodents constantly have to chew, spraying a substance with a natural rodent repellent can make that object less appealing to the rodent. Always read the manufacturers directions and apply the repellent only as directed. Even though the product is natural, you never want to misapply a repellent.
Rodent Damage to Cars
We receive many calls a year about rodents causing damage to cars. The rodents will crawl into the engine area and chew at wires. This can cause severe damage to cars wiring and cost hundreds to thousands of dollars to repair. Most car damage occurs to cars parked outside. Since the car is outside, it is often difficult to treat the surrounding area for rodents. That means we must treat the car for the rodents.
Products such as Rodent Defense Vehicle Protection work great for protecting your car or other machinery from rodents. This natural product consists of water, vinegar, and peppermint oil to repel the rodents. The manufacturer states that the product can be applied to anywhere in the engine area. The idea is that when the rodents enter the engine bay and begin to chew on things, they will ingest some of the product. Since they don’t like the taste, they will leave and hopefully not come back. Read and follow all of the directions on the bottle before applying.
Other Natural Rodent Repellents
Other natural rodent repellents utilize similar ingredients as the product mentioned above. They will have mint, peppermint, or a spicy ingredient to make the surface less appealing to the rodent. Some repellents come in a granular form to be sprinkled around the perimeter of a home, garage, or shed. These repellents work by producing an odor, similar to mothballs, that the rodents do not like. I don’t use odor based repellents because our customers also don’t like to smell the odor.
My thoughts on natural rodent repellents
I like to use natural rodent repellents on physical objects that the rodents are damaging. This includes cars, machinery, lawn mowers, electrical lines, plumbing, and HVAC lines. Applications can also be made to anything that the rodents are damaging like lawn furniture. I’m not a big fan of any repellent that uses odor as its main deterrent. This is because the odor is often annoying to the client and the whole point of rodent control is to be comfortable around your home again.
Rodent Trapping Methods
We have all seen rodent snap traps and glue boards. Although they are poison-free methods for rodent control, their are better options out there. Multiple catch rodent stations allow the rodents to enter the station using spring loaded ramps. Once inside of the station, the rodents cannot escape, but are also not injured. More than one mouse can enter and be trapped inside of the station. Many clients use these traps and empty the stations daily. They will usually release the captured mice far away from their homes and then place the stations again.
Another option for a mechanical trap are electronic traps. These traps are humane kill rodent stations. The mouse enters the station and a shot of electricity or bolt kills the mouse immediately. These traps are considered humane and ethical since the action is immediate and causes no pain. Check out this trap from Automatic Trap here. Since the trap kills without poison, there is no danger to pets, or other predators that may eat the dead mouse
My thoughts on mechanical rodent trapping
I think mechanical trapping works best for homes that already have an active rodent infestation. They also allow for the safe and humane removal of the rodents from the property. I do not like using glue boards or snap traps as I believe they are not as effective and not as humane.
Of course the best way to treat for rodents is to prevent them from entering in the first place! Hind sight is always 20/20 and on many rodent treatments we are able to identify many possible rodent entrances. Had these areas been sealed up, the rodents would not have been able to enter the property.
Since rodents only need the size of nickel to enter a structure, a careful inspection around the outside of the property should be completed. If you have an active rodent infestation, place your traps or repellents on these entrances. Once the infestation has been eliminated, rodent exclusion can begin.
Rodents can chew through many very hard substances. Using caulk or sealant alone will only slow them down as they can easily chew through it. We use steel wool, copper mesh, or Xcluder to plug the entrances. Then, we will apply a sealant to make sure the exclusion fabric stays in place. The exclusion fabric works when the rodent tries to chew through it and cuts its mouse on the sharp parts of the fabric.
My thoughts on Rodent Exclusion
Preventative rodent sealing is ALWAYS the best treatment option. I love when we do a preventative sealing BEFORE the client ever has a rodent infestation. You would be surprised what a little steel wool and caulk will do to keep your home or business rodent free. Remember to look for very small openings and gaps down low to the ground AND up high.
Natural Rodent Control Final Thoughts
There are many different treatment options for rodent control that do not utilize poisons. Rodent control starts on the outside of the home so begin your rodent inspections there. Below are some additional resources to check out.
- Natural Pest Control
- Rodent Inspection and Treatment -VIDEO
- Common Rodent Entrances -VIDEO
- Rodent Control Starts on the Outside
- How Did I Get Mice?!
- Rodents Chester County
- What’s that Scratching in my Walls? Part 1
- Restaurant Pest Control
- Rodent Control -Video
- Pest Control Vacuum for cleaning up Rodent Droppings -Video
Prudential Pest Solutions Exterminators in Chester County
If you live in Chester County and have a rodent issue, we can help. Our fully licensed and insured technicians can walk you through our rodent treatment options and select one that works for you.
From natural pest control to other methods, we will get your home or business rodent free!
Give us a call or send us a message to get rodent free today!