Australia is home to all kinds of creatures that would happily take up residence in your roof cavity if they could. It contains shelter, bedding material and warmth. But some pests are similar, like roof rats (black rats) and possums. If you have heard or even seen them then, you might be unsure of which one you have living in your roof cavity.
But although they are similar in size and stature, possums (marsupial) and roof rats (rodent) have some distinct differences from one another.
Possums Grunt and Growl
The patter of tiny feet on your ceiling isn't enough to help you distinguish between a possum and a roof rat. But if you listen closely to the sounds they make when they communicate, you should be able to tell them apart. If you have roof rats, you'll hear squeaking and hissing for the most part.
But if possums are your pest problem, then you'll hear a whole range of sounds, like:
In fact, researchers discovered that possums make up to 18 different noises, and that's without the gnawing and the scratching!
Rats Are Active Night and Day
If you have roof rats residing in your roof, you'll be able to hear them throughout the day and night. And, roof rats are more likely to roam more widely within your home as they search for food and water. Because of that, you'll hear them in your walls and rummaging around in your kitchen when they aren't up in your roof.
Possums on the other hand, are nocturnal. This means that they won't become active until night falls. Once night falls, if possums are living in your roof, you'll start to hear the thumping and scraping of their movements as they head outside to feast on insects and plant material. You are unlikely to hear a possum rummaging around in your kitchen.
Roof Rats and Possums Sometimes Live Together
If you hear what sounds like roof rats and possums in your roof, you might be unlucky enough to have both species living in your roof. While you won't find them living together in the wild, your roof is large enough to allow both species to live side by side.
Whatever your pest is, you'll need a pest control service to help you to identify and remove it from your roof. Don't put poison down if you aren't sure what your pest is. You might end up poisoning a family of possums, something that is illegal. Instead, call the experts. A pest inspector will also help you to identify weak spots in your roof. For more information, contact a pest control professional.