Common Pests in the Attic

House Mice in the Attic

Strange sounds coming from your attic? It could be pests scratching and scurrying about! Although the attic may be merely a storage space to you, it can often be a welcoming home for animal intruders like rodents, bats and raccoons, arachnids and insects alike.

Preferring to live in dark, secluded areas, house mice often invade attics. Exposed, insulation, packing supplies and other storage items provide perfect nest building materials for these rodents. Plus, getting up to the attic is no problem for house mice because they are excellent climbers and can easily scale branches that are touching buildings.

Roof Rats in the Attic

As their name would suggest, roof rats prefer to live in the upper parts of buildings, such as attics. Known for their extraordinary climbing ability, roof rats can easily use nearby trees to reach the upper levels of buildings. They are able to squeeze through access points as small as a quarter and can gain entry to a home by following pipes or gnawing through materials such as wood, aluminum siding and drywall.

Bats in the Attic

The most common bat species found inside, big brown bats can quickly roost in an attic and use it as their own personal cave. Able to squeeze through openings as small as half an inch, these flying creatures will take advantage of architectural gaps near the edges of rooflines, crawling further into structures once they’ve entered. Big brown bats prefer to stay in the same place year-round and can create big problems for homeowners if infestations are left unchecked. Brown bats are protected by law in most states, so anyone suspecting an infestation should contact animal control or wildlife services for assistance.

Raccoons in the Attic

One of the craftiest creatures in the wild, raccoons utilize their strength and expert climbing abilities to get into homes and attics. These animals can sneak through poorly screened vents or eave gaps, but they have also been known to rip right through roofing materials in order to gain entry. Typically foraging for garbage, raccoons will feel right at home living in the attic and may even use your nearby trash cans as their primary food source.

Cluster Flies in the Attic

Cluster flies get their common name from their habit of forming compact clusters typically in wall voids and attics. They are widely distributed in the United States except for the states bordering the Gulf of Mexico. These attic insects can be a nuisance for homeowners in the autumn, winter or spring – autumn when they enter homes to hibernate and again in the spring when they attempt to leave the structure.

Squirrels in the Attic

Despite their name, some types of tree squirrels will find their way into the attic. For example, gray squirrels nest in tree cavities during the summer, but they invade structures when the temperature drops. The attic and its insulation provide the perfect refuge for tree squirrels to overwinter. Unfortunately, it also makes reaching these furry invaders more challenging, which could result in costly repairs.

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