Similar to the Norway Rat, the Black Rat is believed to have come from Southeast Asia. It first appeared in Central and South America in the mid-16th century, evidently carried there aboard Spanish ships; it arrived in North America with the early colonists at Jamestown in 1609, and gradually spread across the continent.
Formerly much more common, the Black Rat has often been displaced by the slightly larger and more aggressive Norway Rat; this may be because the Black Rat does better in tropical climates and the Norway Rat in temperate climates, rather than because of overt competition.
Excellent climbers, in the South they live in the upper stories of buildings; they also make nests in tangled vines and in trees. Omnivorous but partial to grain, the Black Rat does enormous damage in docks and warehouses, contaminating with its droppings what it does not eat. Like other rats, it carries a number of diseases, including bubonic plague, which is transmitted by its fleas. Snakes, owls, dogs, and cats are its chief predators.
If you’re concerned that you have black rats in your home or place of business, give Dave a call at 1-800-400-6009.