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norway rat near a fence

Norway Rats

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What do Norway rats look like?

Also called brown rats, house rats, sewer rats, and wharf rats, Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus) are slightly larger than roof rats, with adults growing up to 16 inches in length including their tail (which is shorter than their bodies unlike roof rats). They have heavy and robust bodies with short, coarse fur that ranges from reddish-brown to grayish-brown in color. Their ears are small and close to their heads.

norway rat in hampton roads yard

When are Norway Rats most active?

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Are Norway rats dangerous?

Norway rats are carriers of serious illness and disease including jaundice, rat-bite fever, and salmonellosis.

As is typical with rodents, Norway rats cause damage to structures and personal property with their propensity to gnaw on just about anything they find. In fact, there’s a risk of fire when Norway rats or other rodents chew on electrical wires. They also cause contamination with their droppings and urine.

How can I tell if I have a Norway rat problem?

There are a few signs that you may have a Norway rat problem, including:

  • Seeing live rats or dead rats on your property, typically at ground level
  • Finding rat droppings, which are large, dark, and blunt-ended
  • Gnaw marks on wood, electrical wires, and other objects
  • Hearing scratching or gnawing noises in the walls, basement, or other dark and damp areas
  • Finding signs of nesting materials, such as shredded paper, cardboard, or fabric
  • Greasy, dark rub marks against walls
  • Burrows in the yard

What attracts Norway rats?

You could attract Norway rats to your property if there are plenty of food sources (inside or outside), water, unsecured trash or food waste, piles of firewood, debris piles, vegetation they can burrow in, and easy access into a structure.

How do I get rid of Norway rats?

For comprehensive rodent control services in Norfolk and Hampton Roads, contact Getem Services today. Our locally owned and family-operated pest control company has been exterminating rats since 1922 and is ready to help Virginia property owners identify and eliminate rodents.

How can I prevent a Norway rat infestation?

To make your property less appealing to Norway rats, our pest control specialists recommend:

  • Keeping your yard and home clean and free of clutter, including removing any standing water
  • Repairing leaks and addressing water in the crawl space
  • Storing all food, including pet food and birdseed, in airtight containers
  • Sealing all cracks and holes in your home's exterior to prevent rats and other pests from entering
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Our goal is to be the best and last pest control company you ever have to use.