Roof rats are generally a nocturnal species, but when there is a heavy infestation in an area, they may become active during the day. As the competition for resources and habitats intensifies, many nocturnal species become diurnal, and vice versa. Roof rats in particular will adapt to both changes in environment and competition in order to find suitable habitats that give them access to food and mating opportunities.
Normal roof rat activity during the day
When rats can afford to be active only at night, they will spend their daytime in their nests, which are located far above the ground. In the home, this would usually mean the attic, or the upper parts of the home. In nature, this could be in trees, or other structures that are in the air. They are able to do this due to the shape of their feet, which has evolved to allow them to grab onto surfaces easily. This sets them apart from their cousins, the Norway rats, which are not great at climbing, preferring instead to burrow underground.
The nest of the roof rat outdoors
The roof rat will build its nest in dense cover, thick shrubbery and vine covered trees. They may also nest closer to the ground when they cannot find any location that is higher, and they will choose locations such as piles of trash or wood. They are similar to squirrels, in the way that they can nest high up in the trees.
The roof rat in the home
Roof rats will try to gain access to the attic of the home, and they will usually do this by climbing onto tree limbs that reach over the roof, or by travelling across electrical and other wires connected to the home. Once they are inside, the roof rats will look for various spaces above the ceiling, or wall voids and voids created by soffits. If they find the home to be suitable, they can be a real problem. They have a distinct odor, and their urine and droppings are health hazards, carrying potentially dangerous diseases. Roof rats are also known to gnaw on electrical wires and insulation, causing a lot of damage to the home.
If you suspect that you have a roof rat infestation, it’s best to take care of it right away. Contact us today, and we will send over a pest control specialist immediately.