Norway rats and roof rats are both common pests that can be found in homes and commercial buildings. While they are similar in many ways, there are some key differences between these two types of rats.


One of the main differences between Norway rats and roof rats is their size. Norway rats are larger than roof rats, with a thicker, more robust body and a shorter, stouter tail. Roof rats, on the other hand, have a slender, elongated body and a longer, thinner tail. This size difference can make it easier to identify which type of rat is present on your property.

In terms of appearance, Norway rats and roof rats can also be distinguished by their coloring. Norway rats are typically brown or gray in color, with a lighter-colored belly. Roof rats, on the other hand, are typically black or dark brown in color, with a light-colored belly.


Another difference between Norway rats and roof rats is their behavior. Norway rats are burrowing rodents that typically nest in the ground, while roof rats are agile climbers and are known to nest in high places, such as trees, roofs, and attics. This means that Norway rats are more likely to be found in basements or crawl spaces, while roof rats are more likely to be found in upper levels of a building.


Despite these differences, Norway rats and roof rats are both dangerous pests that can carry diseases and cause significant damage to buildings. Both types of rats are known to chew on electrical wires and other materials, which can pose a fire hazard. They can also contaminate food and surfaces with their urine and feces.

This is why it’s important to get rid of these rodents as soon as possible, and being able to identify which one of these species is in the home can help with the control process. For example, Norway rats are more active on the lower levels of the building, and this can inform trap or poison positioning.

It’s also best to hire a pro when you’re dealing with either one of these species, because they can both reproduce very fast and are intelligent enough to avoid certain control approaches.

For more information on these two rat species and the differences between them, or if you have a rat infestation in your home, contact us today.

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