ELK GROVE (CBS13) – In cities across the Sacramento region, residents are reporting an increase in rats in their neighborhoods and their homes.
Pest control experts say there’s a record number of rodents this year and blame the uptick on the extreme weather.”All of a sudden it’s there and it freaks you out,” said Elk Grove homeowner Juli Koeberlein.
“All of a sudden it’s there and it freaks you out,” said Elk Grove homeowner Juli Koeberlein.
It’s enough to make your skin crawl when you hear them running through the walls.
“We could just hear the little feet,” said Koeberlein.
But the rats themselves aren’t so little.
“They’re like the size of squirrels. They’re enormous.”
Koeberlein has lived in her Elk Grove home for 18 years but never had a rat problem until recently.
“My concern was they were going to start crawling and chewing through the walls and coming into the actual house,” Koeberlein said.
Jeff Davenport has worked with official pest prevention since the year 2000 and says the rodent problem in cities across the area is the worst he’s ever seen it.
“We’re ordering a lot more of this stuff and it’s just going out as soon as we can get it in,” said Davenport.
So, what’s behind the rise in rats? Experts say it’s a result of our extreme rain and heat.
“It was a record moisture year.”
On top of record rain, the warm summer brought more reproduction and now as the weather cools down, rats are taking shelter.
Pest control experts say it’s important to make sure your home is properly sealed. Rats can fit through holes the size of a quarter, and anything smaller they can chew their way through. There are also many tools and traps to help weed them out, Davenport says.
Koeberlein says the rats are still outside her home, but no longer in her attic.
Davenport reminds that rat season typically spikes in winter months and says it’s likely this problem will only get worse before it gets better.