Wildlife vs Pest Control; Which One Removes The Rodents?

If you’re spotting signs of a mouse infestation around your home, it’s time to call in a professional.

But which one? While we all know there are wildlife removal companies out there, as well as pest control services, most of us use the words interchangeably to refer to people who’ll rid us of a problem.

And in that, we’re correct. Both pest control services, and wildlife removal professionals will get rid of an unwanted critter that’s endangering our health, and possibly the structure of our home.

However, pest control and wildlife removal are two different services, and you need to understand the difference.

What does wildlife removal do?

Wildlife removal services usually employ a team of professionals to remove nuisance wild animals from your property. Depending on the company you’ve chosen, the methods used may be more or less humane. Many modern wildlife removal services solely employ non-lethal options, like live traps, or exclusion devices. This way, they get the animal out, without actually harming it. Though there are still some wildlife removal companies that will offer the option of lethal removal (e.g. poison, traditional lethal traps, etc.).

Wildlife removal companies typically deal with larger animals, such as rodents, snakes, opossums, raccoons, skunks, birds, bats, moles, voles, and other such creatures. Of course, it’s best to ask to find out what animals a specific company is equipped to remove.

A wildlife removal session will typically consist of:

  • an inspection (during which they’ll identify the animal’s entry point, what attracted it to the house, number of animals, etc.);
  • a prep phase (during which it’s decided what the best removal method is);
  • a removal phase (during which they actually trap and remove the animal);
  • a post-removal phase (typically dealing with clean-up, restoration, sanitizing the premises, and focusing on future prevention).

As such, if you are dealing with a rodent infestation, you want to ask a wildlife control expert for help, not a pest control company. Pretty much all wildlife removal companies are equipped to handle rats and mice, as some of the more basic, common types of home intruders.

What does a pest control company do?

Okay, but why can’t you ask a pest control expert for help? Well, to answer that, we need to look at the type of critter a pest control company typically handles. A pest control company will remove termites, ants, bees, wasps, flies, cockroaches, and so on.

Now, a wasp infestation, for instance, is very different from a rodent infestation. First of all, you’re looking at wildly different numbers. Second, we’re also talking about a different kind of damage produced to the home and to the inhabitants, and different attractions. Because of that, pest control experts are not really equipped to deal with a rat or a mouse (let alone larger nuisance wildlife like a raccoon).


The removal methods employed by a pest control company also differ significantly from those of a wildlife removal team. Since pests like termites or ants are typically within the hundreds, you can’t really expect live trapping or even exclusion to work. As such, pest control companies typically use various methods of physical control, chemical control, and biological control to stifle a pest population and remove it from a home.

Just like wildlife removal companies wouldn’t be equipped to handle a termite infestation, so a pest control company isn’t really the best choice for a rodent infestation.

What happens next?

If you suspect a rodent infestation on your property, it’s time to call in a professional. They will assess everything from rodents’ food choices, to preferred hiding areas, to entry points. It’s vital to understand where the rodent is entering and leaving the house, and seal that off promptly. Else, you risk attracting other nuisance wildlife, as well.

The wildlife removal company will also safely remove the rodent(s) from your property, as well as advise you on what you’re doing to attract rodents, in the first place. Most homes aren’t as clean and tidy as their owners think, so upping your cleaning game might be a good start.

It’s important that you arrange for speedy removal of the rodent, since rats and mice reproduce at a significant rate, and so you risk seeing your infestation double if you hesitate.

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"The Clark Legacy Drs. Kenneth and Mamie Clark and their work," this post is made in partnership with Harlem Cultural Archives, get more at Harlem History.

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