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Different Types of Rodents Common in Georgia

By June 12, 2024No Comments
Different types of georgia rodents

Georgia’s mild climate and varied landscape create the perfect environment for a range of rodents. While these little mammals are vital to the ecosystem, they can become serious nuisances when they enter homes and properties. Identifying and understanding the most common types of rodents in Georgia is a big part of prevention!

This article will cover the most frequent rodent intruders, their traits, their habitats, and what you can do to keep them at bay.

Importance of Georgia Rodent Control

Rodents are notorious for causing various types of structural damage – they chew through wires, insulation, and wood, which can lead to costly repairs and even increase the risk of electrical fires.

Beyond physical damage, rodents can also pose significant health risks. Many are carriers of diseases such as hantavirus, salmonella, and leptospirosis, which can be transmitted to humans and pets through droppings, urine, and bites. A rodent infestation can quickly escalate, compromising not just your property, but the well-being of everyone in it.

So, effective rodent control is crucial for maintaining a safe and healthy environment. By identifying and understanding the common rodents in Georgia, you can implement proactive measures to prevent infestations.

A rat is one of the most common rodents in georgia, with several different types.

Common Rodent Species in Georgia

While this list covers the most common rodents you’ll encounter in Georgia, it’s not exhaustive! Knowing the habits and characteristics of these frequent intruders can significantly aid in spotting and controlling infestations.

Norway Rats

Norway rats are large, robust rodents with blunt noses and small ears. Their fur is coarse and brownish-gray. They prefer lower levels of buildings and burrow in the ground outside. Being nocturnal, they forage for food and water at night.

Norway rats can cause significant structural damage by gnawing on materials and contaminating food supplies. They also spread diseases such as leptospirosis and rat-bite fever.

Roof Rats

Roof rats are a smaller and more slender type of rat, with pointed noses and large ears. Their fur is smooth and typically dark brown or black. They prefer high places, nesting in trees, attics, and upper levels of buildings, and are excellent climbers.

Roof rats can cause extensive damage to roofs and electrical wiring. They are carriers of diseases like typhus and salmonella.

House Mice

House mice are small, with large ears and small eyes. They have light brown or gray fur. These mice live indoors and outdoors, nesting in walls, cabinets, and other hidden areas. They are active year-round.

House mice contaminate food and surfaces with their droppings and urine, spreading diseases such as salmonella. They can also cause damage by gnawing on materials.

Deer Mice

Deer mice have bi-colored fur with a white underside and brownish upper body. They have large eyes and ears and are typically found in rural areas, nesting in tree hollows, outbuildings, and occasionally homes.

Deer mice are known carriers of hantavirus, which can be transmitted to humans through contact with droppings or urine.


Also known as pack rats, woodrats are medium-sized with large ears and bushy tails. Their fur is grayish-brown. They build large nests out of sticks and debris, often in wooded areas or under buildings.

Woodrats can cause damage by collecting and hoarding objects. They also pose a risk of spreading diseases through their droppings.


Voles are small, stout rodents with short tails and stocky bodies. Their fur is usually brown or gray. They live in grassy areas, gardens, and under snow cover, creating extensive burrow systems.

Voles can damage lawns, gardens, and tree roots by their burrowing and feeding habits. They can also carry diseases such as tularemia.


Chipmunks are small, with distinctive stripes running down their backs. They have large eyes and bushy tails. They prefer wooded areas and are often found in yards and gardens. Chipmunks burrow underground to create their homes.

While primarily a nuisance, chipmunks can cause structural damage by burrowing near foundations and patios. They can carry diseases like plague and salmonella.

Identifying a Rodent Infestation

Detecting a rodent infestation early is critical to preventing extensive damage and health risks. Rodents are adept at staying hidden, but several telltale signs can alert you to their presence:

  • Droppings: One of the most obvious signs is the presence of droppings around food packages, in drawers or cupboards, and under sinks. These droppings are typically small, dark, and pellet-shaped, indicating recent rodent activity.
  • Gnaw Marks: Rodents constantly gnaw on objects to keep their teeth sharp. Look for gnaw marks on food packaging, walls, furniture, and electrical wiring. Fresh gnaw marks are light-colored and become darker over time.
  • Nests: Rodents build nests using shredded paper, fabric, and dried plant matter. These nests are often found in hidden areas like attics, basements, and behind appliances. Finding a nest is a strong indication of an active infestation.
  • Scratching Noises: Rodents are nocturnal and may make scratching or scampering types of noises in walls, ceilings, or under floors, especially at night when the house is quiet.
  • Tracks and Runways: Rodents often travel the same paths, leaving behind oily rub marks along walls and footprints in dusty areas. You might also notice well-worn paths in grass or dirt around your home.
  • Burrows: Outside, rodents, particularly Norway rats, create burrows along foundations, under shrubs, and in gardens. Look for holes with smooth edges where they enter and exit.
Comparing different types of rodents

Recommended Preventative Maintenance

Start by inspecting your home for gaps or holes in walls, foundations, and around doors and windows. Rodents can squeeze through small openings, so seal these with materials like steel wool, caulk, or hardware cloth. Pay close attention to areas where utilities enter your home, as these are common access points.

Keeping your home clean is essential! Store food in airtight containers and promptly clean up spills and crumbs. Ensure garbage bins are tightly sealed and emptied regularly. Clean kitchen surfaces, including countertops, floors, and sinks, to remove any food residues that might attract rodents.

Eliminate clutter to reduce hiding spots for rodents. Organize storage areas such as basements, attics, and garages, and keep items off the floor. Proper waste management is also crucial – ensure garbage bins are securely covered and clean. Store compost bins tightly sealed and keep pet food indoors or in rodent-proof containers.

Finally, controlling moisture levels helps deter rodents. Fix any leaky pipes and faucets both inside and outside your home. Ensure gutters and downspouts direct water away from your foundation. Use dehumidifiers in damp areas like basements and crawl spaces to reduce moisture levels.

When to Call a Professional

If you notice signs of a large infestation, such as numerous droppings, widespread gnaw marks, or hearing constant scratching noises in multiple areas of your home, it’s time to call a pest control expert. Additionally, if your efforts to seal entry points and clean up fail to reduce rodent activity, a professional can provide a more thorough inspection and tailored solutions.

Professionals have access to specialized tools and treatments that are more effective than over-the-counter products. They can identify entry points that you might have missed and offer long-term solutions to keep rodents out.

Moreover, dealing with potentially dangerous types of diseases carried by rodents is best left to those with the proper training and protective equipment.


When it comes to rodents, Georgia is home to a range of different types that can cause significant damage and pose serious health risks. But by understanding them, you can implement proactive measures to keep them at bay!

Regular inspections, maintaining cleanliness, sealing entry points, and managing your outdoor environment are essential steps in preventing an infestation. However, when signs of a larger problem emerge, don’t hesitate to seek professional help.

For help with rodents or other pests around your home in Atlanta, GA, and surrounding areas, call the experts at All South Pest Control today.

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