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Roof Rat vs Norway Rat

Norway rat in Santa Fe NM - New Mexico Pest Control

Serving Albuquerque and Taos

Out of all pest problems, rats can cause some of the most damage to your home or business. Unfortunately, the Santa Fe area is no stranger to rat infestations. There are two types of rats in particular that are known for being both destructive and hazardous: the roof rat and the Norway rat. Both of these rodents are notorious for infesting properties, especially in the fall and wintertime. And while they can cause some of the same troubles, it’s important to learn how to tell the difference between these rats. The rodent experts at New Mexico Pest Control are here to help—read on to learn everything you need to know about identifying a roof rat versus a Norway rat!

What Are the Differences Between Roof Rats & Norway Rats?

Let’s face it: no one wants to get close enough to a rat to be able to properly identify it. However, knowing how to tell apart rats can help with learning not only how to get rid of them, but how to prevent them from ever returning. The main differences between these nuisance rodents are as follows.

  1. Roof rat vs Norway rat characteristics: The roof rat is smaller in size than the Norway rat, but has a much longer tail. It is also typically darker in color. The Norway rat has a thick body and smaller ears and eyes.
  2. Roof rat vs Norway rat droppings: An easy (albeit gross) way to differentiate these two rodents is by looking at their droppings; roof rat droppings are small and tapered, while Norway rat droppings are larger and rounded.
  3. Roof rat vs Norway rat behaviors: Just as their name suggests, roof rats gain access to homes via roofs and prefer to nest in attics and soffits. Norway rats are known to dig and burrow, which is how they can get inside of properties.
  4. Roof rat vs Norway rat dangers: For the most part, both these rats pose a threat. Roof rats and Norway rats alike can create an absolute mess in your home with their nesting habits and are known to chew wires, causing a fire hazard.

Infographic about roof rats vs norway rats - New Mexico Pest Control

The Diseases Carried By Rats

The major concern with any rodent problem is, of course, the types of diseases they’re able to carry and even transmit. In fact, rodents are one of the biggest contributors to pest-related diseases. This is typical because their droppings can spread dangerous germs and bacteria. Thankfully, Norway rats and roof rats do not transmit Hantavirus, which is one of the most dangerous diseases spread by rodents. However, there are a few diseases that these rats can spread:

  • Roof rats have been known to carry or transmit rat-bite fever, salmonella, trichinosis, and even bubonic plague.
  • In addition to the same diseases spread by roof rats, Norway rats can also carry or transmit typhus, Weil’s disease, and toxoplasmosis.

Need Help Identifying a Roof Rat vs Norway Rat?

Regardless of what rat species you have infesting your home, it’s imperative to enlist the professional expertise of your local rodent control company. At New Mexico Pest Control, our exterminators will help to identify the type of rat you have before implementing the proper course of action to get rid of them for good. Contact us today to get started!

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Roof Rat vs Norway Rat in Santa Fe and Albuquerque NM

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