Rat and Mouse – Identification

Q: We found the droppings of an animal in our kitchen. My husband thinks it is a mouse, I think it is a rat. Is it possible to tell the difference?

A: It may be distasteful, but it is possible to distinguish between the rodents by examining their droppings closely. The droppings of a mouse will look like black grains of rice; averaging 1/4 inch long, with pointed ends. Rat droppings are between 1/2 inch and 3/4 inch long. The shape will help you tell the difference between roof rats and Norway rats, which are the two most common in Atlanta. The Norway rat droppings have blunt ends; the roof rat droppings have pointed ends.

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