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QUESTION: I just found this on my carpet. I picked it up with a disinfectant wipe-- neither did it smear nor crumble when I added pressure. (A couple of specks did fall off, but that is it...) It is quite hard.
I'm petrified of rodents, please let me know if I have anything to worry about!

ANSWER: Hi Lynn,
This does not look like a dropping. If it is....it would be rather old and would have to been squished long ago as you described it to be hard and crumbly.

Droppings are usually found in out of the way places where rodents like to hide. One thing you can do is look the home over very closely for any possible entry points where rodents might try to come in.

A simple mouse trap, not set, with some peanut butter on it is a great way to see if you have any unwanted visitors. Place a trap say....under sinks, below appliances, in the garage and the like. If the peanut butter disappears, you may have a visitor. If that happens, simply reapply the peanut butter and spring the trap. (With your aversion to rodents I would suggest you find someone to do this for you.)

If you have any activity or find fresh droppings anywhere....DO NOT USE BAIT! You will be even more unhappy with dead rodents in the house, or worse yet stuck in somewhere where you can't dispose of them.

The key to long term control if there is an issue is to seal up the home, trap the population inside the home (including subarea and attic space)...then and only then bait in locked, secured boxes can be used outside to keep the population down surrounding the home.

Any further questions please don't hesitate to contact me.

Rene' Kesecker
Good Earth Pest Company
Corvallis Oregon

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thank you so much for your response.

It did not actually crumble completely-- just a couple of specks fell off.
However-- I did go check it again after an hour or two, because I wanted to check the shape once again. After sitting in the disinfectant wipe for a while, and when I got a new, wetter one, it began to leave some small green smears and became more malleable. Would the moisture from the wipe soften up a dropping, or would it remain hard regardless?

Answer
Hello Lynn,

If the item you found was a dried version of just about anything....the moisture from the wipe could re-moisten it.

If it was a old dry dropping, the green color may be a indication that whatever left the dropping may have ingested some bait. It is common to use blue or green dye in rodent baits. Of course this could be a situation where a neighbor has used bait and someone simply tracked a dropping into your house. Mice and Rats generally don't walk out in the open. They prefer out of the way paths such as along walls, under furniture and such.

I would simply keep on the lookout for any indications of activity, either droppings or activity at traps set with attractants.

Hope this helps put your mind at ease.
Any further questions please don't hesitate to follow up with me.

Rene Kesecker
Good Earth Pest Company
Corvallis Oregon

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Rene Kesecker

Expertise

I can thoughtfully and truthfully answer any questions that deal with insects or rodents that are entering or around structure, especially those found in the Northwest. Our company specializes in low impact pest management.

Experience

I have been involved in the pest management industry since 1981. My husband and I own The Good Earth Pest Company, which provides service to homes and businesses throughout the mid Willamette Valley. We are a second generation pest management firm. I served as the first woman president of the Oregon Pest Control Association and currently serve on the Professional Women in Pest Management council for the National Pest Management Association. Good Earth was the first company based in Oregon to be certified Quality Pro by the National Pest Management Association, meaning we have met of exceeded the high standards set by our industry leaders.

Organizations
I am currently the Chairperson for both the Legislative and Scholarship committees for the Oregon Pest Control Association and a Member of National Pest Management Association where I serve on the Board of Directors and Professional Women in Pest Management Committee. We are Certified Quality Pro by the National Pest Management Association. Our company is a member in good standing of both Oregonians for Food and Shelter and Associated Pest Management.

Publications
I have assisted in the annual reviews and co-authored the Structural and Occasional Invader chapters of the Northwest Pest Management Guide, published by Oregon State University. I have assisted in the production of the Oregon Pest Control Association, Intergrated Pest Management Technician Training Manual, this publication is still in progress. My articles on pest management have been published in local newspapers such as Gazzette Times, Albany Democrat Herald and Itemizer Observer.

Education/Credentials
My formal training in the pest management field has come from years of experience and continuing education provided throughout the years by our state association, national association and leaders in our industry. Although I now manage our office I once worked in the field performing repairs, termite treatments and general pest control. I am still a certified applicator in the state of Oregon and activly partitipate in continuing education.

Awards and Honors
Certified Quality Pro by the National Pest Management Association. Our entire staff is held to the highest of standards having met or excedded benchmarks in areas such as enviromental stewardship, background checks on all empolyees, Safety and having drug free employees to name a few.

Past/Present Clients
We currently manage many large condo complexes and provede pest management for a large firm that manages homes for the disabled. This requires highly trained technicians and office staff that can handle any situation human or pest related.

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