Thursday, December 13, 2007

Found this and thought it would make good reading

Brown rat, common rat, Norway rat, sewer rat
Rattus norvegicus
HistoryOriginated from Asia and China. First recorded in Europe at the beginning of the 18th Century. They were referred to as Norway rats because they were thought to have traveled from the East on Norwegian timber ships.

R. norvegicus must drink water daily unless the food source is extremely moist. They are considered omnivorous but if available, cereals seem preferred. They eat on average one tenth of their body weight each day.
R. norvegicus explore locations quite freely.
However, it does have a fear of new objects. This is known as neophobia and this should be taken into account when baits are checked after an initial treatment.

This can vary but usually brown to grey with lighter underside.
Ears Small, Eyes Small ,Tail is Slightly shorter than head and body. The tail is dark above and lighter below.
Weight (adult)
400 - 550 g
Litters per year
3 - 6
Litter size
8 - 10
2 - 3 months
Average life span
12 months
Rodent Control Methods
General tips for rodent monitoring and control programmes are given in this section.
Prior to carrying out treatment against rats or mice, a thorough inspection or survey of the property, site or area should take place to decide on the extent and size of the infestation. Adjoining areas should also be included in this survey (as rodents may travel from other areas to feed or drink then return to a harbourage).
The following covers the basic points to consider including protective equipment. During the survey, the surveyor or operative should also be undertaking at least a mental risk assessment, in some circumstances using a check/tick box risk assessment to cover hazards that are found on site. Any factors that the client or property owner can do to improve the situation should also be noted. For instance, housekeeping, stacking, proofing and cleaning etc all form part of an integral control programme.
Protective equipment requires is as follows: Gloves, coverall, suitable footwear and a hard hat for the survey, if in ducting or roof spaces. Additional equipment that may be required include a torch, notebook and tracking dust.
Obtain as much information as possible from people on site and use this information when conducting the survey. Try and put the information gained into context whilst on site, remembering that people may exaggerate and may also pass on second-hand information that may be incorrect.
Armed with the background knowledge of biology and behaviour, look for signs of rodents. These will include
Smear marks
Dead and live rodent A further characteristic is smell. Rodents produce a distinct odour in nests sites and harbourages that once experienced will not be forgotten .

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