One Hopping Rat Infestation: What To Do About Kangaroo Rats

19 December 2014
 Categories: , Articles


The kangaroo rat has a long tail and hind legs that are longer than the forelegs. They tend to eat seeds, but have also been known to eat some leaves and plants. If you have a kangaroo rat infestation in your yard, their burrows can wreak havoc, leaving your lawn damaged. Since some varieties of kangaroo rat have been declared endangered, it is typically in your best interest to reach out to a pest control company to identify the rodents and determine the best way to deal with them. By talking to a professional, you can be sure that you are dealing with them in the best way permitted by local laws.

Understanding the Endangered Status

Since some species of kangaroo rats are on the endangered list, it's in your best interest to consider humane options for getting rid of them. Whenever possible, get pictures of the rat that you're dealing with so that a pest control technician can determine what kind of kangaroo rat you have. This will help you to find out if it is an endangered variety or not. If you have an endangered variety in your yard, you'll have to trap and relocate them.

Trapping Kangaroo Rats

When it comes to trapping, you'll have the choice of live or snap traps. If the rats in your yard are endangered, you will have to use live traps. If not, you may be able to use snap traps. When you go to release the rats from a live trap, make sure that you take them at least a mile from your house. Choose an area away from other homes so that they don't become a problem for other homeowners. It's important that you release them right away after trapping, because they can die if you leave them in the trap for several hours at a time. For the best chance of catching the rat, place the trap near the entrance of the burrow – not inside the burrow.

Using Pesticides

There are several pesticides available and approved for use with kangaroo rats, provided that you are dealing with a species that you can legally kill. Choose a pellet material or your pesticide so that you can apply it easily around the bait or food source that the rat is harvesting. If you've decided to use pesticides, you should definitely consult a professional for guidance first.

Protecting Your Property

Once you get rid of the kangaroo rats from your yard, the next step is to keep them gone. After all, you didn't put all of that work in for nothing. Install a wire mesh or cloth mesh fence around your yard to keep them out. Opt for a fence that's several feet tall. Bend the bottom of the fence out a few inches to make it harder for the rats to get back into your yard. You should also consider burying some fence at least a foot beneath ground level so that the rats can't burrow in from another yard. The fence will keep your yard protected from unwanted invasions by more kangaroo rats as well as other underground pests.

Any time you have rodents in your yard, you risk them gaining entry to your home. Since these pests can be destructive and can carry diseases, it's in your best interest to address infestations and keep them at bay as proactively as possible. If you aren't comfortable trapping and getting rid of the rats yourself, you should talk with a pest control company about how to have it all done professionally. He or she can help you to protect your home and your family while dealing with the rats safely.