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Information on Rodents in New York City and Long Island


Magic Pest Management suggests that we must all work together to maintain your yard and property rat free. Whether you live in New York City, Nassau County, or in any of the other borough you can have rats living near you.

When working together it is easier to get things done.

There are several important steps in controlling rats in cites like New York and around resident homes in Nassau County. Cleaning up debris, maintaining buildings, empty lots, yards, and containerizing trash must be done on a routine basis. Help keeping a neighborhood rat free is a cooperative effort, trash must be kept in tightly sealed rat-resistant trash cans and by taking other actions to reduce the conditions that allow rats to survive. This is very important whether you own or rent your property we all have a role in rat prevention.

Norway Rats


Norway Rats have other common names sometimes they are called brown rat, city rats, or sewer rats. These rats can be very large when you measure them from the tip of their noses to the end of their tails. They can be up to 16 inches in length. Norway rats have short blunt snouts; the adults can reach the weight from 7 to 18 ounces. They can vary in color; the primary coloration is gray on the underside and can be reddish or grayish brown to black on the top of their bodies. The tail of the Norway rats has no hair on them and are shorter of the rat's body.


In general, Norway rats are most active at night, they start to become active at dusk and can stay active until dawn. During the daytime hours they are inactive. However, if a population grows so large that there is not enough food for all of the rats to feed at night, they may start coming out during the day. In addition to searching for food and water they may seek out a new place to live during daytime hours well. Norway rats are excellent climbers and are strong swimmers as well. In general, Norway rats live in underground burrows where they build their nests, mate, rear their young, store food reserves and hide from predators.


Norway rats can live in very diverse habitats; they can live anywhere that people can. Some of the areas that they are know to live in are garbage dumps, sewers and fields. Rats living in urban environments are frequently seen scurrying around after dark looking for food in garbage and other places where human trash is found. It is common for rats to make their burrows along foundation walls, under woodpiles and any other piles of debris. If a Norway rat should infest a structure it is most common to find them living on a main level or in a basement.


Norway rats are polygamous and form colonies of many males and females. During the warmer months is when the majority of the mating takes place. In some cases, if food, water and shelter is adequate mating can take place year round. Adult females will mate year round and produce about seven litters a year, they have been known to mate18 hours after giving birth. The potential of an adult female is to have between 50 and 60 young in a year.

Do I have rats?

Do you hear noises, see burrows, rub & gnaw marks, or droppings?

Rats are predominantly nocturnal by time that you see them they may established a colony already. If you are seeing rats during the day, it is an indication that there is a great deal of competition from other rats for the available resources.

Burrows In the ground around foundations or in hillsides are indications of rat activity.

Sounds and Noises If you are hearing noises in the walls or scratching it is a strong indication to a homeowner that they may have a rat infestation.

Gnaw Marks Rats have to keep gnawing in order to keep their front incisors short enough so they can continue to eat.

Rub Marks Rats use sebum an oil that they produce from their bodies to mark surfaces to communicate to each other and find their way around.

Droppings Rats produce a great deal of feces and this is an easy way to determine if a rat is present in an area. It is a good idea to have droppings removed to help determine a new infestation from an old one. All proper precautions should be used when droppings are removed.

Magic Pest Management's Rat Program

Whether treating Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, Manhattan, or Nassau County all of the recommendations below will help reduce rats from any given area.

Magic's pest management professionals (PMPs) practice all the techniques involved in Integrated Pest Management for rodents. Rat treatment involves both non-chemical and chemical methods. Some of the more important non-chemical methods are:

Exclusion Work Exclusion and sealing of holes greater than 1/2 inch using screens, flashing, door sweeps and other materials to keep rats from entering a structure.

Sanitation It is critical that both the interior and exterior sanitation levels be brought up to minimize available food and water that supports a rat population.

Harborage Dense vegetation will be used by rats for homes and harborage. Thinning out and the removal of vegetation from the perimeter of buildings will prevent this from occurring.

Trapping Magic uses different kinds of mechanical traps means to remove rats.

From time to time, to control rats, we may utilize rodenticides to help us complete the job. We always follow all federal, state, local regulations and the label to the products to assure a successful job. When rodenticide is to be applied it is always in a tamper resistant bait station that protects the bait from the elements and keeps non-target pest from getting access to the products. If the need arise we may also use a pelletized rodenticide and apply it according to the labels and directly burrow bait.

Examples of rodent control station that Magic uses: