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The House mouse is a worldwide pest of buildings. The UK’s mice are incontinent, disease-carrying vermin, (They dribble urine onto surfaces) damage goods and breed at a rapid rate. A mouse can produce up to 80 droppings in 24 hours, so food and food preparation surfaces can easily become contaminated even when only a small number of mice are present. Probably the most important disease that can be transmitted by mice in the UK is Salmonella food poisoning.
Rats are the one rodent which most people can not abide. They damage goods and property and carry disease including Leptospirosis, otherwise called Weil’s Disease (pronounced Veil’s). This disease is transmitted to humans in the urine of infected rats. It is usually associated with watercourses, sewage systems and even damp soil where there is an infestation of rats. Other diseases associated with rats are salmonella and the less common rat-bite fever and typhoid. Parasites caused by rodents include, ringworm, roundworm, tapeworm, ticks and fleas.
Life and breeding cycle of rodents is as follows:- In the wild, the average life span of a rat is one year. Gestation period for a rat is three weeks, the female rat can give birth to about 20 young a year (4-6 at a time) if she lives that long! The young are weaned at 4-5 weeks, at 3 months old they are ready to start breeding!
Rats also cause major damage to property by chewing electrical cables etc.
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