Rat or mouse droppings?

Asked October 12, 2018, 6:21 PM EDT

Hi we have been experiencing a mouse or rat problem at work. Lots of droppings and urine found ruining our products. We've set traps with peanut butter but it's not attracting them. Can anyone tell if this is a mouse or a rat and other suggestions to rid the problem? Thanks!

Maury County Tennessee

1 Response

Thank you for your question. Without measurements, it's difficult to say what you're dealing with. Mouse droppings are generally in the range of 1/32 - 1/16" in diameter and 1/8 - 1/4" long. Rat droppings, like the Norway rat, are 1/8 - 1/4" in diameter and 1/4 - 15/16" long.

Based on your photo showing the pipe, I believe these are rat droppings. Rats can be very wary of traps. I have had good luck with peanut butter mixed with sunflower seeds. Dried fruit is also good. I assume you are using traps that kill the rat and not live traps. One technique is to place the baited traps out, without setting them. The rats get used to the traps and taking the bait. Once they are accustomed to the trap, and your bait is disappearing, then bait the traps and set them.

There are also multi-catch live traps for rats that can hold 10 or more rats at a time.

If you suspect you are dealing with an infestation, you may want to consider contacting a professional exterminator in your area.

I hope this information helps, and thank you for contacting Ask an Expert.