What are Palm Rats and How to Get Rid of Them? UPDATED FOR 2021 – 2022

April 3rd, 2018

Rat sitting in the palm of someone's hands

How would you feel if you were just going about your daily routine in the house, and amidst your cleaning, you had a surprise encounter with a rat in your house? It would be scary, right? It would be even more unnerving to discover later on that the little four legged rodent has in fact, destroyed your garden, and gnawed through the electrical wiring! All this is highly unsettling for most homeowners.

Do you wonder where these rats come from? You might see a large fat rat running on its four feet down that favorite palm tree you planted in your garden!

Yes, there are many types of rats and palm rats are a nightmare for many house and property owners, as they are known to be one of the leading pests in Florida.

What Are Palm Rats?

Palm rats are also known as roof rats, citrus rats, black rats, and ship rats belong to the Muridae family of the rodent species. They are found more commonly in areas with a tropical climate, and they are climbers. These pests like to nest above the ground in trees, especially the palm tree, thus earning their unique name. Their main food source is fruit.

Measuring 12” to 14” in length, these rats are grey, black to brownish grey in color, and have lighter colored bellies. These pesky creatures gnaw on the wiring present within the walls, short-circuit electrical devices, try to get their hands on any kind of food in the kitchen, rummage through the garbage, and damage the garden by feeding on vegetables, plants, and fruits.

Photo of the Palm Rat

These pests even chew on the sealant present on the roof along the tiles, and that is how they gain access to your homes. Besides being a major cause for concern because of their habit of leaving chaos in their wake, these rodents are also unsafe to have around the house, since they can spread dangerous diseases. If you see signs of a palm rat in or around your property, you need to take steps to get rid of the infestation. How do you do that?

Signs Of Palm Rats In Your Home

It’s important to be able to identify the signs of palm rats in your home to know when you have a problem. Here are some indicators you should look out for of a rat infestation in your home.

  • The appearance of droppings. Palm rat droppings are 1/2 inch long with pointed ends.
  • Gnaw marks on your homes roof, eaves, or even on electrical wires or furniture.
  •  Hollowed out fruit inside your kitchen, or outdoors if you have fruit trees.
  • Foot tracks or grease trails from them traveling throughout your home.
  • Sounds of movement or scratching around your home, particularly in the attic at nighttime.
  • Signs of agitation or abnormal behavior in pets.
Photo of the house

How to Get Rid of Palm Rats

The best way to get rid of a palm rat infestation is to let the professionals do their job. They know how to get rid of these small rodents and ensure that your house is kept safe from further intrusion. But there are also some ways which you can use on your own to avoid a rat infestation and get rid of the pests from your property.

Sealing all potential entryways through the roof is a great way to deny the rats any access to your home. Also, remove any vines which may be acting as a bridge to your roof. You can also eliminate their food source by keeping all your edibles tucked away in cabinets, and keep your trees and plants trimmed to prevent any chance of nesting. You can also try scaring them away with sounds, but they are adaptive creatures and will eventually grow accustomed to the noise.

Commercial Rat Removal

Finding rats in your place of business threaten your company’s ability to operate and maintain its reputation. Whether you have an office, a restaurant, or storefront  – it’s extremely important to keep it clean and free of pests. If you see signs of palm rats in your place of business you should contact a professional to reduce your risk of fines, shutdowns, or loss of business.

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Palm Rats In 2021 – 2022

According to a recent study, four cities in Florida were among the worst in the country – including Miami, Tampa, Orlando, & Fort Myers. In the past few years, the problem of palm rats has consistently been a serious issue in Southwest Florida. Palm rats are not only a nuisance in your home that chews up wires and leave droppings, but they are a serious threat to your family’s health by being carriers of several diseases. If you see signs of palm rats in your home, act quickly to get them removed.

Palm Rat Removal Fort Myers, Naples, Bonita Springs, St. Pete, Orlando

If your palm rat infestation situation gets out of hand, it is, however, best to call in the help of professionals for the job. Alford Wildlife and Pest Management in Fort Myers and St. Pete has experience in rat removal in the local area and we are certified wildlife removal experts. We offer both commercial and residential services.

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Fort Myers: (239) 245-7482

St. Pete: (727) 291-9801

Orlando: (407) 204-1040

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