It is better to prevent rat numbers from building up on your property by taking some proactive measures rather than attempting to deal with them retrospectively. Bear in mind that rats are often just as much of a problem in Australia in urban settings as they are in rural ones, where they will tend to target silos of stored grain. Being proactive does not simply mean laying poison down regularly, either. You need to have a proper pest inspection regime. Either do this yourself or hire a professional who can undertake the pest inspection on your behalf. Either way, what are the signs of rats that you should be looking out for?
One of the clearest signs you will find of an impending rat infestation is when there are a growing number of droppings you spot around the place. Of course, detecting the occasional sign of rat excrement does not necessarily mean that an infestation is on the way but surprisingly small amounts here and there can soon build up. This will indicate that their numbers are on the rise. The best place to look is behind electrical appliances, storage units and unused rooms, such as cellars or lofts.
Rats will rub alongside things as they pass by, sometimes urinating as they go. Therefore, look low alongside fences and skirting boards where they might pass. If you see what looks like smeared grease during your pest inspection, then it is a likely sign that rats are present and leaving an odour trail for each other to follow.
Damaged Wiring and Guttering
Rats can chew through numerous tough materials including the sorts of plastics that modern electrical wires are sheathed in. They can also gnaw on downpipes and other parts of your property's guttering installation. Check these things for damage. If there are tooth-like gouges present, then rats are the most likely cause.
If you enter a dusty room, such as a basement or a garage, and notice that there are small paw prints left in the dust, then you should easily be able to identify the animal or animals that left them. If you think that rats might be present from your pest inspection but remain unsure, then a good tip is to throw down flour or talcum powder in the spots you think they might pass through. Come back later to see whether a trail of prints has been left.