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Types of Rodents in Kansas City
December 19, 2022

Types of Rodents in Kansas City

Rodents can be the bane of any homeowner’s existence. The presence of rats and mice in your home can be an extreme detriment to not only your sanity, but your family’s safety as well. In this blog, we will inform you of some specifics on rodents, common rodents found in Kansas City, and what to do if you spot any of these pests in your home.

mouse outside of kansas city home

What is a Rodent?

The rodent is a type of mammal that lives in cities, suburban neighborhoods, and rural settings. Many species of rodents exist in the world. All of which have front incisors that grow continuously throughout their lifespan. Rodents are adaptable and have the ability to successfully survive in almost any indoor or outdoor environment. Rodents will consume any food, water, and shelter sources that they find. Combined with their rapid breeding, rodents can become a problem inside any home or commercial building.

Where Do Rodents Live?

As stated earlier, rodents are highly adaptable animals that have populated the globe. Some rodents burrow underground while others nest on the surface. Hollow logs, tree roots, and tall grasses provide adequate shelter for rodents. In populated areas, rats and mice tend to live near humans and easily-accessible food sources away from the threats of predators. Mice and rats are mostly nocturnal, making it difficult to catch them. Most rodents are discovered due to signs they leave behind.

What Do Rodents Eat?

Most rodents prefer eating plant foods like seeds, grains, and small fruit. However, mice and rats are omnivores, which means that their diet can consist of animal products, too. That means that rodents will essentially eat anything that you do. Due to this, a big rodent pest control tactic consists of keeping any and all food you eat out of reach of pests and properly sealed away.

Common Rodents Found in Kansas City

While there are many species of rats and mice throughout the world. Not all of them have migrated their way to Kansas City. Thank heavens for that! Below we will list three common species of rodents that are commonly found in Kansas City homes.

House Mouse

The house mouse is the most common rodent found in homes around Kansas City. They can be identified in most cases by their size, growing to be about 2.5 to 3.75 inches, and their tails add an additional 2.75 to 4 inches. They have light-brown or dark-gray fur and beady black eyes.

Deer Mouse

A deer mouse is much larger than a house mouse, as they grow from five to eight inches long. Their fur color is mostly light brown with gray patches mixed in on their back. The deer mouse also possesses a white belly that is more noticeable than most species of mice.

Norway Rat

The Norway rat is believed to be of Asian origin. They were brought to the U.S. aboard ships in the 1700s. Norway rats are common in Kansas City. The main difference between rats and mice is size. A Norway rat, also known as a sewer rat, grows to around 7-10 inches long with mostly brown hair.

Are Kansas City Rodents Dangerous?

Rodents can be very dangerous pests. They are known to cause considerable damage to homes, as well as transmit diseases. Eliminating rodent infestations is vital to protect your family’s health and the stability of your home. 

Rodents can spread Lymphocytic choriomeningitis (LCM), salmonellosis, dysentery, Hantavirus, and leptospirosis. A rodent’s shed fur, saliva, and excrement can trigger allergic reactions and asthma attacks.

They also contaminate food sources and the surfaces of your home with their urine, excrement, and saliva. Additionally, mice and rats cause damage to structural elements inside homes like electrical wires, equipment, wood, insulation, drywall, ductwork, and flooring.

So, if you have a rodent problem in your Kansas City home, it’s best to get professional rodent control ASAP!

Do rodents bite?

Bites from rodents are rare, but they can happen if the rat or mouse feels threatened. Mice are less likely to bite a person or animal than rats are. Rodents can transmit diseases with their saliva through their bites.

What Causes a Rodent Infestation?

Rodents are drawn to areas that offer plentiful food, water, and shelter sources. Once they are nested on your property, it is only a matter of time before they find their way inside your home in search of food. Rodents are troublesome all year long, especially in the late fall when they are looking for shelter prior to winter. Rodents get inside through spaces in the foundation, gaps under doors, holes along the roofline, vents, or down chimneys. Rodents like to be warm so when the temperatures drop in the fall, they're likely to come inside to get warm. 

Where will rodents be in my home?

Rats and mice nest outside in various spots including

  • Trees & stumps
  • Woodpiles
  • Under decks & foundations
  • In dense vegetation
  • Along riverbeds
  • In abandoned bird nests
  • In areas of debris

Inside, rodents nest in warm, dark areas that are near sources of food and water. They also prefer areas of clutter, and places not frequently visited by people. This includes attics, basements, crawlspaces, boxes, closets, and behind appliances.

How do I prevent rodent infestation?

Rodents are tough pests to keep out of your home. However, there are some steps you can take to make your Kansas City home less attractive to rats and mice, these include:

  • Place a tight-fitting cap on the chimney and fix holes along the roofline
  • Remove fallen trees, stumps, and other debris from your property
  • Install weather stripping around exterior windows and doors
  • Remove water sources from your property
  • Pick up fallen fruits and vegetables from garden areas
  • Make sure outside trashcans have tight-fitting lids on them
  • Seal up cracks and crevices in the foundation and exterior walls of your building
  • Trim tree branches, shrubs, and bushes back away from the exterior of your home

What To Do If I find Rodents in My Kansas City Home?

If you discover rodents in your home, it is best that you seek a qualified rodent control company to effectively take care of the problem.  If you’re looking for rodent control in Kansas City, look to Miller Pest & Termite to identify the problem and come up with a plan to get rid of rats and mice. Don’t try to tackle the problem yourself, as this can often make it worse. Our professionals will also be able to return to your home within 24-48 hours to retreat any problem areas—at no extra cost!

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