When temperatures start to drop, most warm blooded creatures– ourselves included – tend to seek out places and situations where they’ll stay a bit warmer.
If you’ve been in Florida for more than a few months, you’ll mysteriously find, regardless of where you came from, that you have a lower threshold for colder weather, even when the mercury is only dropping below 60-degrees.
Living in Florida causes physiological changes, that, combined with higher humidity, causes us to feel like 50 degrees around here is like 32 in Ohio, Michigan or Indiana.
What you may not know is that we’re not alone in this phenomenon. All mammals on the Gulf Coast of Florida: dogs, cats, mice and rats feel the “chill,” and subsequently also seek to bundle up if they can or move into places where it’s warmer. And thanks to our own adjusted cold tolerance, those places are often our homes, our schools and our churches.
An unfortunate side effect of the rodents seeking shelter is the spread of various allergens carried on their fur into the buildings, especially those with centralized heating and cooling systems.
According to the CDC, more than 6-million kids suffer from asthma, including 17% of black children.
In the past, scientists and doctors studied the primary place where kids spend most of their time – their homes (and even their yards, although that’s less frequent these days).
And while there are many different allergy triggers that can be encountered in life, recent studies seem to show that kids who develop asthma and asthma like symptoms do so after being exposed to these allergens in their secondary home – their schools.
While the researchers are quick to point out there is no clear causal relationship between mouse-borne allergens and asthma, they did discover that they are universally present in schools. Further, in the inner city schools they tested, those with higher levels of mice-related allergens suffered symptoms at least one more day a week than kids in the other schools.
Other allergens, like dog and cat dander and dust mites were also found, but at much smaller levels and none of them appeared to increase the chance of asthma like the mouse-related allergens.
Further studies are being planned, but it seems clear that limiting exposure to mice, however cute, and the allergens they carry is important to help control asthma. Scientists will look into improving the air quality in schools and taking steps to control the pests by removing clutter and sealing up building cracks.
Of course, you can also take steps to control the exposure of your family to the allergens these rodents carry by taking steps at home. Good News Pest Solutions has been recognized as the Gulf Coast’s leading expert on keeping rats and mice out of your house and in reducing the rodent population outdoors as well. We guarantee your property for a year after treatment and, like all our solutions, employ environmentally safe alternatives to harmful chemicals. Contact us to find out more today!
Most folks like to do something special for New Year’s Eve – shoot off some fireworks, drop in at Disney, maybe even brave the crowd in Times Square to watch the ball drop. But one prime celebration location is suffering from an ages-old infestation that the most romantic city in the world just can’t get a handle on – the Parisian rat population.
We all remember from our history classes that the nasty little rodents spread the Bubonic plague – in fact, recent examinations of history have proven that the Black Death of the 1300’s that ravaged close to half of the population of Paris was not spread by rats and other rodents, although most people still assume they were to blame. Given their history, it’s no surprise that, despite the Pixar film, most rats are still not welcome at Parisian dinner tables.
Yet, despite the city government’s pledge to completely “de-raticize” the Renaissance tourist attraction in 2014, it’s apparently more visibly infested than ever before, forcing the closing of nine popular parks in the City of Light – including the famous Parc du Champ-de-Mars, home of the Eiffel Tower. In fact, animal control officers say this is the worst the city has seen in almost 40 years.
And there’s a reason that we said a visible problem – it appears the rats are overrunning the above ground city because of a huge overpopulation below ground. Now there’s something you don’t want to hear, especially if you were planning a trip to the city’s historic catacombs. And the most popular plan of attack? To drive the rats back into the sewers – not, we’re thinking, a viable solution to stopping the spread of a disease, should that recur.
The problem is apparently, two-fold – new European regulations, meant to mirror ones in the United States, changed the way rats were poisoned, as the old ways could also lead to water contamination as well as being accidentally ingested by curious pets and children. So now the rats have to seek out the poisoned bait in enclosed boxes – a lot harder draw for the rodents who can easily find a smorgasbord fit for the Rat King in open garbage pails.
In fact, in the weeks since the new regulations took effect, not a single rat has ventured into the boxes of death – and the ready supply of food means the rats can continue to reproduce at an alarming rate. Rats can mate every 3 weeks, producing a litter of 4-5 baby rats, and those newly born babies can get pregnant themselves within 6-9 weeks.
What’s worse – even if the rats in Paris’ past (Rattus rattus) didn’t spread the Black Death, their distant Asian cousins– Rattus norvegicus – which was responsible for the Modern Plague in the 1860’s, arrived in the French capital about 200 years ago and are now the dominant species as well as known spreaders of salmonella and swamp fever.
Still, the Parisian animal control people do believe the rats have a place in their city – just out of sight. When properly maintained, the rats work well as composting agents, devouring waste that would otherwise need to be disposed of, and their furry little bodies – they also work great as pipe cleaners. Once again proving that every living creature has its own God-given purpose. Who knew? 🐭
If you see rats in your home or on your property, give us a call. Good News Pest Solutions has been recognized as the Gulf Coast’s leading expert on keeping rats and mice out of your home and in reducing the rodent population outdoors as well. We guarantee your property for a year after treatment and, like all our solutions, employ biologically safe alternatives to harmful chemicals that protect your pets and family while eliminating the pests. Contact us today!
Outside of Stuart Little, Tom & Jerry, and Ratatouille, most people are at least startled, if not repulsed, at the sudden appearance of a mouse or rat. But if the fear or even the thought of such an occurrence causes extreme anxiety, you could be suffering from an irrational and unreasonable fear of mice, known as musophobia.
It’s not hard to figure out where this comes from. We were all taught in school that rats spread the Bubonic Plague (or was it gerbils?), that mice and rats live in dirty conditions, and that they’re prone to eat trash.
The symptoms of musophobia vary depending on the extent of fear the phobic experiences, but sometimes include:
Probably the most famous person to suffer from musophobia was Mr. Walt Disney, who created the now iconic Mickey Mouse as a way to try and get over his intense fear of the rodents. ⬅Who da thunk that? 😆
Unfortunately, while Walt’s fear has paid off well for him, drawing a cartoon character isn’t the best solution for the rest of us. And as the weather gets cooler, even here in Florida, mice can settle in to attics and crawlspaces to find more warmth.
And the saying, ‘they’re more afraid of you than you are of them,’ doesn’t always override our emotional reaction. Not to mention, whether you’re afraid of them or not, mice tend to chew on things – like furniture, clothes, and food left unattended.
Be aware that mice and rats are everywhere in Florida, even the most exclusive homes and neighborhoods. And not to worry you more, but you may not even be aware that the little critters are in your home as they tend to be more active at night!
Luckily, there are solutions. And, no, we aren’t referring to adopting a new feline friend. Good News Pest Solutions offers the most comprehensive rodent solution in the state.
Don’t give in to fear – contact Good News today for a free home inspection and evaluation. Taking preventative measures now will bring you peace of mind and a rodent-free home.
It’s time for the rat race! You might be thinking to yourself, “Time for the rat race? It’s already started and I run that race every day!”
No, not that kind of rat race. We’re literally talking about rats (and mice!) racing… right into your HOME to escape the cold.
It looks like cold weather has finally made it’s way to Florida (along with all other kinds of weird weather— thanks a lot, El Nino!), and rodents will be seeking warmth and shelter. This usually means they try to find a way to get into your home, often your attic. And they’re quite good at it, too.
In fact, did you know rodents can fit into amazingly small spaces? If they can fit their skull through a space, their body will follow! Here’s a fun little video example for you.
So, how do you know if you have rodents in your home? Ask yourself these questions…
Stay tuned next for “What’s the difference between a mouse and a rat?”
If you have tell-tale signs of mice hanging around, ie. smear marks, gnaw marks and actual rodent sightings, you might have tried good-old fashioned mouse traps to solve your problem.
There are many different kinds of mouse traps on the market, but they may not be as effective as you think.
Here are a few reasons why using mouse traps are not the best solution for your rodent problem!
If you suspect you have a rodent problem, contact Good News Pest Solutions today! We specialize in tracking these little guys down and giving you a rodent-free home.
Let us help you with our leading green products and use of EPA registered reduced-risk products. We are the experts at rodent control! Click Here to provide us your contact information if you are interested in protecting your home from rodents!