The UK was recently hit with two major storms – both within just days of each other.
High winds and heavy rainfall caused much disruption with Storm Dennis triggering a record-breaking number of Environment Agency flood warnings and causing the worst winter floods in recent times. Many areas were affected including Worcestershire, Herefordshire, Shropshire and Redhill.
As well as damaging homes, buildings and vegetation, the storms also disrupted travel with many trains being cancelled including services from Sutton and Epsom as well as flights to and from Heathrow and Gatwick.
The recent bout of bad weather has also caused pest control problems which is something we do tend to see more of when heavy rain showers fall.
Why does flooding often lead to an increase in rodent numbers?
During heavy rainfall, rat and mouse infestations tend to increase. This is typically due to two reasons. The first is that with sewers overflowing, pests which are normally well hidden, are forced to come above ground.
The other reason is that heavy rainfall and flooding can destroy any previous nesting locations which is naturally going to force rodents to seek new shelter. Unsurprisingly, when it’s cold and wet outside, our dry, warm homes are very inviting to rats and mice.
Rodent infestations can create serious problems for residents and businesses who are already trying to cope with the aftermath of flooding. Not only can they cause structural damage and fire hazards through gnawing, rodents also spread diseases and contaminate food.
Rats are a particular concern in flooded areas due to the health risks associated with them. They carry a number of nasty diseases which can spread to humans. Weil’s disease is one of the more worrying waterborne diseases which can be found in stagnant flood water because it can be fatal.
Humans are at particular risk of contracting Weil’s disease when flooding occurs because we’re more likely to come into contact with rat droppings and urine.
How to stop rodents coming into your home if you’re in a flooded area
• Clear up fallen trees, fences and any other debris that may have accumulated – especially if they’re close to buildings. Rodents often hide under debris and if it’s located near your home or office, it won’t be long before they make their way inside.
• Make sure your premises are well sealed. Check for missing roof tiles, cracks and any other openings that may act as an easy entry point for rodents.
• Check that any outbuildings, children’s toys and vehicles don’t have trapped debris which may provide a cosy home to rats and mice.
• Ensure all food, including pet supplies are kept well sealed and dry.
• Call your local pest control expert. Here at Prokill we do more than just eliminate infestations, we can prevent them from occurring in the first place. If you’re in an area prone to flooding, give us a call and we can put the steps in place to ensure rodents can’t make their way in. We serve areas all over the UK from Bath, Croydon and Bolton to London, Crawley and Liverpool.
If you’re worried about a rodent infestation or would like to book in for your free, no obligation pest control audit, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Prokill.