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Harsh winter breeds record number of rodent roommates - abc27 WHTM

Harsh winter breeds record number of rodent roommates

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) -

This cold and snowy winter has all of us seeking hibernation, and little critters are no different. Unfortunately, record numbers of them are attempting to get a little too cozy.  

"Typically around here that's a Norway rat," said Dave Horst, Harrisburg District Operations Manager for Ehrlich Pest Control.   

Midstate homes are suffering with a record numbers of resident rodents. Heavy bouts of snow and ice destroyed nests, then all but ushered them to our doorsteps.

"A fallen tree right beside the house could create a void under it where they could eventually nest, which puts them close to your home," said Horst, adding that brush leaning on a home could act as a luxurious staircase for an eager rodent.  

Experts at Ehrlich say that these intruders often sound larger than they are and can enter through quarter-sized holes. Once inside, the critters typically chew and channel their way through walls and wires.

"There are viruses involved in their droppings they defecate and urinate continuously throughout the day," said Horst.  

Those were harsh words. So, in light of these trespassing accusations, our crews went right to the subject

After knocking on the door of abc27's resident rat, we were politely asked to leave.

Off-camera we were told that the mouse/rat community is "just trying to survive this lousy weather" like the rest of us.

Unfortunately Horst says that live trapping often only spreads the problem. He suggests sealing all possible entrances and calling in an expert.

And by expert...we mean a real one.  

"Some cats will ignore that there is a rodent in the home," said Horst. "We've found situations where rodents were eating pet food."

Another weather related pest issue to think about are the potential for those fallen trees and left over stumps to act as breeding grounds. Experts at Ehrlich warn that stumps can quickly become home for tons and tons of termites. They suggest to keeping an eye out for any potential infestation and have it taken care of before spring.

Even if you are not sure if you are dealing with a pest problem, many companies including Ehrlich will perform a free consultation.

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