Any sort of pest infestation can be alarming, but more so when you have rodents running around. Rats and mice carry various diseases and can make a mess of your pantry. They tend to make themselves cozy in your home without you even knowing, but eventually, you start seeing signs. You might notice small pellet droppings in kitchen drawers or a hole in the wall behind the entertainment center. So, before you come face to face with one of these furry creatures, you might ask yourself: “Do I have mice, or are they rats?” At Wagner Pest Solutions, we have remedies for both, but here’s how you can tell the difference between the two species.

Do I Have Mice or Rats?

The Difference Is in the Droppings

You will find the poop before finding the rodent, so knowing the difference between the droppings is an important part of your in-home investigation. If you have mice, you’ll find little mounds or dozens of scattered droppings in one place. These little pellets will be pointed at either end and be no longer than a quarter of an inch. If you have rats, you’ll likely find a handful of droppings that are larger and more brick-like in structure. Remember, no matter what kind of droppings you find, avoid touching them with your bare hands as rat and mice droppings contain pathogens that can easily spread to humans. 

Dietary Needs Are Different

Both rats and mice will munch away at any food sources you have in your home. However, paying attention to which food sources are devoured could help you identify your culprit more quickly. Mice tend to go for carbohydrates, such as cereals, flours, crackers, and even meat sources. Rats, on the other hand, will go for meat sources that are dead or smell like flesh, including cans of tuna, last night’s meatloaf, and even dog food. Take note of where you find destruction, and you’ll likely have your answer of whether you have rats or mice. 

Rats and Mice Live Differently

Mice like to build their nests and homes in warm places and near food sources. This makes your walls the prime candidate for mouse activity. However, rats prefer to move through underground tunnels or beneath clutter. They will try to conduct most of their business underground and away from noticeable places, so you’re more likely to notice them in the garage or the crawl space. However, mice have no problem scurrying around your living room floor, searching for a warm place to nap or build their nests. They’ll even take fibrous material, such as paper, towels, sponges, leaves, and more, back to their nests for comfort. 

Get Rid of Rodents

Knowing you have rodents in your home can make you feel dirty and unsanitary. What’s worse is when you can’t pinpoint where they’re coming from and when one dies, it smells up the entire house. Thankfully, you have the pest control experts at Wagner Pest Solutions on your side. Don’t let these furry invaders take over your home in Phoenix or Glendale, AZ. In fact, don’t let ants, scorpions, or bees take over either. Contact us today by calling (623) 466-6752.