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How to Keep Rats out of Dirt Crawl Spaces in Portland

Let’s talk about an issue that many Portlanders are experiencing in their yards this year. Norway Rat tunneling. I know fun right? Commonly mistaken for moles, their tunnels are typically spotted near tree stumps, rockery, patios, and foundation walls. These structures create safe and cozy homes for our rodent friends. An easy way to distinguish the two is that moles create dirt mounds near the opening of their tunnels whereas rats do not. If your home has a dirt crawl space, this leaves you vulnerable to rats digging in from the outside and entering your crawl space.

There are several things that can be done about this. The most important thing is physically creating a barrier to keep them out. We do this by digging a trench along the problem spot 1ft down and 1ft out, lining it with ¼ in. galvanized wire mesh and pea gravel, then back filling with soil. However, if an active colony is present, this creates a new problem. Live rats could now be sealed inside of the crawl space. The best way to get them out is with the use of poison free mechanical traps. We usually set these before we start sealing and monitor them after.

Check out our work in action in the video below!

Once a rat proof barrier is installed and after all the rats inside are removed then, ‘Hooray!’, the crawlspace is in the clear. But what about the rest of the yard? This is where we get particularly different from other pest control companies in the Portland area. Instead of placing poisonous rodenticides around your property, we start with mechanical traps inside of a rodent specific protective box. This method is usually avoided because it’s slower and requires more work to maintain.

However, at Campbell Natural Pest Control we embrace all the sweat that comes with remaining poison free. This stage of control normally constitutes a long-term vision. With us, this looks like a quarterly cadence that we revaluate every year. If after a good run with exterior traps, the rats persist beyond your threshold, then our next step is rodent birth control which we are excited to be introducing to the Portland area.

If you need help with rodent control in the greater Portland area, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 503-303-8303 or you can book online here.