Comparing Rats and Mice

If you have seen something small scurrying around your house out of the corner of your eye, you may have spotted a rodent invader. Which rodent, though? Though rats and mice might look and act similar, any good mouse exterminator will tell you there are some undeniable differences between the two rodent species. If you suspect you have house mice in Chicago, call for mice removal services right away.

Size and Coloring

Mice and rats have similar coloring, but their sizes tend to be vastly different. Typically, mice and rat may both be white, brown, or gray in color, or even a combination of those colors. Rats can also be black in color, though. Aside from their similar colorings and markings, mice are almost half a size smaller than rats, coming in at only 12-20 cm long versus rats’ normal length of 40 cm or more.

Amount of Droppings

One of the telltale signs of mice and rats are the droppings they leave behind. Droppings will usually be black or brown in color and are shaped like a small pellet. The biggest difference, and clearest sign you have a mouse in your house instead of a rat, is the amount of droppings left behind. Mice can produce and leave up to 100 droppings a day, while rats will only leave around 20-50 droppings. If you notice a large amount of mouse droppings in your pantry, basement, or yard, call your mouse exterminator right away.

Signs Around the House

Along with droppings, there are some telltale signs of mice and rats around the house. Both species typically have similar habits—making a nest out of almost any material available, for example—but there might be some harder-to-spot differences. For instance, rats have been found to eat or gnaw through almost anything, from food to rocks to electrical wires. While mice are omnivores and will eat most things, they will usually stay away from non-food items except to use as a nesting material.