Why And How To Protect Your Home From Rodents In South Florida
Florida is a haven for holidaymakers and retirees who arrive from everywhere across the U.S. (and in fact the world) to enjoy the Sunshine State's incredible weather and wonderful entertainment destinations. Of course, the attraction of those great beaches doesn't hurt - and neither do places of incredible natural beauty such as the Everglades. But along with that sunshine and balmy weather and ever-increasing human settlement comes a problem - rodents and other pests have now chosen South Florida - not as their holiday destination of choice, nor (as far as we know) because of the great golf courses and retirement communities - but because human beings have made our homes so attractive to these pests. And that weather means that these pests can use the year-round weather to breed out of control.
But, of course, it's not always balmy in Southern Florida, a sudden cold snap during winter can also lead rodents to seek shelter under your roof - then that dangerous out-of-control breeding sets in.
Having an infestation of rodents in your South Florida home can not only be irritating due to the scurrying noises in the walls and attic space leading to lack of sleep. The dangers of not rodent-proofing your home can mean disease, injury, and also damage to food and assets (and their interaction with foodstuff can also lead to disease). There is also the fact that rodents can actually damage the natural integrity of the home. Anyone who has had a pest infestation will tell you that wood and even concrete are fair game for burrowing, as is your attic space, cupboards and even inside of the spaces of your furniture. These are species that will simply make their home in any space that is warm - and where they have ready access to food.
So what can you do to make sure that mice, rats, and squirrels don't make themselves at home in your home?
Firstly, start on the outside of your home. It can be as simple as sealing access points. Make it more difficult for rodents to enter the home and it is likely they will find alternatives. In other words, make entry to your home as 'rodent unfriendly' as possible. Doors and windows (and even your garage door) often have gaps that can allow rodents access. Make sure that everything seals uptight. Given how quickly plant life grows in this humid climate cutting back on trees and shrubs that can allow rodents easy access to upper stories and even roofs might be a good idea. This foliage also allows rodents to feel safer from predators - and making them uncomfortable is the name of the game. leave them exposed and (once again) they may seek greener pastures.
Rodents also love kitchens. Those essential rooms are warm and offer easy access to food sources. There are also plenty of dark spaces that provide them with sanctuary to live and breed. Make sure that you are sealing all your leftovers and essential supplies such as grains in airtight containers (metal containers provide exceptional control against hungry rodents). Also, make sure that you deal with garbage quickly. There are sealed storage bins that are rodent-proof - perhaps investigate those if you are going to be storing garbage. They are also great because they eliminate odors. And clean, clean, clean. Make sure that each and every surface is hygienic. Don't leave leftovers out for any length of time.
Clean, clean, clean doesn't only apply to the kitchen. Rodents Ove clutter. There are nooks and crannies and ample places to hide. Make sure that bedrooms and other spaces are clear of clutter. If you have a home office make sure that your documents are in secure file storage. Ignore this and you may one day be looking for that essential document and find that it has been converted into a cozy nesting spot. This may seem like overkill- but if you want to be free from infestation consider the purchase of a safe - preferably a fireproof one. Even the most determined of rodents lacks lockpicking skills.
Lastly. If you have had problems in South Florida with rodent infestation before or see the warning signs such as droppings, tracks, or gnawed items call in the professionals. It is an investment in your safety - and you'll sleep better at night than they have dealt with the problem (or potential problem).