Adult rats can weigh up to one pound and measure up to a foot long. Their ears are large and they have a pointed nose, with either smooth or shaggy fur. Telltale signs of rats in a home or office building are their droppings, which are 1/4 to 1/2 inch in length, capsule shaped with blunt ends. They also drag their tails, which mice do not, so tracking powder can be put down to distinguish their prints and their locations. They will also drag their tails, leaving a mark between their feet tracks. Tracking powder can be dusted to help determine their runways as they cross suspected areas.
In regards to their life cycles, young rats reach adulthood in as little as three months. Females can rapidly reproduce, some birthing up to 84 young a year. Rats only live for about a year and in a colony structure. Their lives are based around scavenging food and will go to any extent to get it. They seek food outside, but more times than not they will try to get indoors at night to gather food and then return to their burrow. More rats in a population means a larger burrow, eventually turning into a network of underground tunnels. They ideally like to stay underground or low to the ground, but if their population is large, they will live in ceilings, walls or attics. They’re excellent climbers as well as swimmers. Rats are very cunning animals and will be suspicious of any changes in their environments. This means that it may take a few days for them to get used to the traps, and they’ll be more comfortable around them before taking the bait.
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