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Mice vs. Rats: What's the Difference?

April 01, 2021 - Rodents

If you believe you may have a rodent problem but aren’t sure whether you’re dealing with mice or rats, here are some key differences you can use to determine what type of rodent has invaded your home.

Mice

  • Shorter, thin, hairy tails
  • Smaller bodies, usually 2-3.5 inches in length
  • Large ears
  • Lighter white, brown, or gray coats
  • Triangle-shaped snouts
  • 40-100 droppings per day
  • Smaller droppings
  • Most likely to chew through walls, ceilings, and attics to build their nest
  • May live up to 3 years inside a home
  • May produce up to 140 offspring in a year
  • Can enter your home through very small openings, as small as a quarter of an inch
  • Will eat almost any food they can find

Rats

  • Longer, scaly, hairless tails
  • Larger bodies, up to 16 inches in length
  • Small ears
  • Darker gray, brown, or black coats
  • Square-shaped snouts
  • 20-50 droppings per day
  • Larger droppings
  • More likely to chew through walls, wires, cinderblock, etc.
  • Typical lifespan of a year
  • May produce up to 12 offspring per litter, averaging around 5 litters in a lifetime
  • Need larger openings to gain entry into your home, but still as small as half an inch
  • Tend to stick to one singular food source

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