What’s In Your Attic? Rodents?

Rats and mice in the attic

Help, there are rodents in my attic! Finding or hearing rats and mice in the attic can be quite a shock. What should you do?

If you’d like to know how to get rid of mice in the attic naturally, Atticare is the team to go to. We provide expert attic and crawl space services including rodent proofing throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles and New Jersey.

What Do Mice Or Rats In The Attic Sound Like?

Rodents are nocturnal so it’s best to wait for nighttime. Then when it’s quiet, approach your attic and listen. Can you hear any of the following noises?

  • Digging sounds.
  • Scratches.
  • Squeaks.
  • A creature with claws running along.

Can you hear the sound of gnawing, too?

Rodents in attic insulation may be gnawing on it or burrowing into it to make a nest. Rats and mice will also gnaw hard objects like wood and electrical wiring to help keep their teeth from getting too long.

Signs Of Rats And Mice

Rats and mice in the attic will leave obvious and not-so-obvious signs of being there.

#1. Rodent Droppings

Mouse or rat droppings in the attic is the clearest sign you have uninvited guests.

How do you know what type of rodent you have, if you can’t see them? The easiest way is to check the size of the droppings. Mouse droppings are small, typically 1/8 to 1/4 of an inch long, whereas rat droppings are 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch long.

#2. Hair

It’s usually fine and light colored. You’ll find it along the trails that rodents travel along, as well as stuck at the entrances to holes and their burrows. Mice shed regularly, and rats especially molt when they are young.

#3. Body Grease

Rodents can have quite greasy coats in order to keep them warm in cold weather. So sebum trails are a sure sign of having rats and mice in the area. You’ll see these sebum trails on hard surfaces after clearing and sweeping the area.

The Dangers Of Mouse Or Rat Droppings In The Attic

It’s not just smelly and unhygienic to have mouse or rat droppings in the attic. The Center for Disease Control warns that rats and mice spread over 35 diseases worldwide.

Bear in mind too that you can get sick through the parasites that rodents carry. Rodent droppings, urine and saliva can cause allergic reactions plus the following diseases, all of which can be deadly.

  • Bubonic plague.
  • Hantavirus.
  • Rat bite fever.
  • Salmonellosis, which causes salmonella.

Rodents in attic insulation or cavities might put up a fight when you want to remove them, too. If there are baby rats the mothers get even more aggressive. And being scratched, or bitten by those sharp teeth also puts you at risk of infection.

How Do Rodents Get Into Your Attic?

Mice are extraordinary creatures because they can get through a crack or hole the width of a pen. They’ll also gnaw their own holes to gain access to your home.

Here’s how rodents can get in.

  • Crawling along anything touching your roof
  • Loose shingles
  • Roofing vents
  • Openings around pipes
  • Cracks in doors or windows
  • Bathroom vents
  • Air conditioning connections
  • Sewage systems
  • Spaces and cracks in the foundations on your home

As you can see, rats and mice in the attic may have entered directly or they may have entered your home elsewhere and traveled up to the attic.

When Are You Likely To Get Rodents In The Attic?

New Jersey rodent control services get popular in winter. This is because rats and mice are keen to escape from the harsh weather and your attic seems like a good spot.

In contrast, the warm Los Angeles and San Francisco Bay Area summers bring more rodents out there. There’s more food and water available for them, and they tend to move around more. Rodents like to fatten themselves up during the summer too before the cool winter months.

What Attracts Mice To Your Attic?

Mice and rats aren’t so different from humans in some ways. They seek out warmth as well as peace and quiet. So a well-insulated attic is attractive for them. Here’s what else rodents love about your attic.

It’s Dark

Rodents are sensitive to bright light and prefer dark spaces.

There Are Spaces For Nesting

Sorry, but that secluded empty space between your storage boxes or between the beams just looks like a great nesting place to a rodent.


Rodents feel safe in corners so they seek them out for nesting.


Interestingly, rodents instinctively travel along lines. In your home this means along pipes and walls, beams and air ducts.

Will Mice Or Rats Leave On Their Own?

Unfortunately not. Your home is a great source of food for rodents, as well as being warm and comfortable. As long as they have a food supply, they won’t leave by themselves.

Rats and mice in the attic will only multiply the longer you wait before calling expert attic and crawl space services like Atticare.

In fact, a female rat typically has 6 litters of 12 rat pups every year. Mice are even worse: a female can have up to 10 litters of 6-8 mouse pups a year. Both rats and mice can start to reproduce at the age of just one month.

Rodent Proofing An Attic

Wondering how to get mice out of the attic and walls? The best way to rodent proof an attic is Atticare’s tried and tested method, sometimes called “exclusion”. It’s a humane and eco-friendly solution that keeps the rodents away.

Customers ask us how to get rid of mice in the attic naturally. So you’ll be pleased to know that there are no traps or chemicals. This is because the last thing homeowners need is rotting rodents in hard to reach places.

How We Do It

Our professional team can show you how to get mice out of the attic and walls, and keep them out with ongoing inspections.

First we clear the insulation, hair, and mouse or rat droppings in the attic. Then we search for rodent entrances, and seal them off with wire mesh and foam. The rodents just can’t get back in.

Do You Have Rats And Mice In The Attic? Call Atticare For Humane And Effective Rodent Proofing

If you suspect that you have rodents in your attic, don’t delay in calling Atticare at (866) 692-5449. We’ll be right there to get rid of the infestation in your home in New Jersey, Los Angeles or the San Francisco Bay Area.


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