Why Are There Rats On My Roof In Tampa?

roof rat in a shed

These agile rodents are capable of damaging all areas of your home. While invading roof rats are simply looking for shelter, they tend to be inadvertently impolite guests. They gnaw on electrical wires and tear up insulation for nests. 

Roof rats are mostly brown with mottled black and measure up to 16 inches in total length. Their slender bodies are 6 to 8 inches, and they have a tail of equal length. Roof rats are major nuisances owing to their athleticism. Roof rats are incredible climbers. They live in high places. Consequently, they’re challenging to remove from your home. Not only do they congregate in unseen areas of your home, but they also live in places that aren’t easily accessible to humans—roofs and trees, to name a few. Because of these unique characteristics, this species of rat needs an entire blog post devoted to them. 

What Do Roof Rats Eat?

This species of rat prefers to eat fruit and nuts. However, they can gravitate toward any food in your home. Roof rats aren’t particularly picky eaters, allowing them to invade many different homes.

Where Do Roof Rats Live In My Tampa Bay Home?

To reiterate, roof rats tend to live in high places. This gives them the ability to damage your home, all while remaining inaccessible. They can live inside attics, in roofs, in trees, in walls, and in piles of debris. 

Signs You Have A Roof Rat Problem

Roof rats may remain inconspicuous, but with an understanding of their habits, you can detect signs of their presence. Roof rats leave smudge marks in high places from the oil and dirt they come into contact with. If you see brownish, oily smudge marks around your house, you may have a rat infestation. In addition to their urine, which is hardly distinguishable from many other pests, you may see small droppings around your home, especially in high places. Lastly, you’re likely to see damage in high places, whether it’s torn apart insulation in your attic or severed wires on your roof. Aside from the obvious damage, it is worth noting that because roof rats sometimes live above false ceilings or in between walls, it could be difficult to detect an infestation.

Damage Associated With Roof Rats

Roof rats are unique in many ways, but the damage they inflict on your home is largely similar to other species of rodents.

  • Like other species of rats, roof rats contaminate and feed on stored food. 
  • They could contaminate your pet food as well, especially if it is poorly sealed. 
  • They may munch on your garden vegetables and fruits. 
  • Likewise, they often feed on tree crops. This tendency is pervasive among roof rats. 
  • They’ve been known to tear apart insulation for nests and to chew on cables.

Preventing Roof Rat Infestations In Tampa Bay

Despite the dogged determination these rodents have to ruin your life, there are various ways you can prevent a roof rat infestation.

  • Firstly, keep shrubs and trees trimmed away from your house. The limbs of trees should not extend above your roof. In addition to providing them easy access to your roof, this could also provide them with a degree of protection from the weather. 
  • You can seal up any crevices, crack, or other possible entry points with steel wool. Look for holes near exterior walls and water heaters. 
  • Store pet food in sealed containers. 
  • Look for ways with which a roof rat could climb onto your roof. Make sure to eliminate any vines. 
  • Check your garden regularly for any pests.
  • Use chimney caps to prevent access into your home.

If you are dealing with an existing infestation, we encourage you to call us at EchoTech Pest Control Services. If you live in the Tampa Bay area, we have the tools and experience to eliminate rats from your property. We offer one-time or recurring pest control services. Reach out to our team of experts at EchoTech Pest Control Services to learn more!