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Is there a rodent problem in Australia? How did rodents get to Australia? What is the most common rodent in Australia?

  • January 23, 2024
  • 6 min read
Is there a rodent problem in Australia? How did rodents get to Australia? What is the most common rodent in Australia?

Rodents are a common and seemingly unrelenting nuisance worldwide, and Australia is no exception. As if all the poisonous spiders and venomous snakes weren’t problem enough, modern homeowners have rats and mice to contend with as well. 

In this article, we’re going to take a closer look at the presence of rodents in Australia, talk about how they first arrived on the continent, identify the most prevalent rodent species, the potential dangers they pose, and (most important of all) share some effective methods to deal with rodent infestations in your home. 

Do you suspect that you may have a rodent infestation in your home? Or perhaps you’re curious to learn more about preventing them from entering your property? Whatever the case, stick around and we’ll tell you everything you need to know on the subject. 

Is There a Rodent Problem in Australia?

First of all, is there a rodent problem in Australia? Should homeowners be worried? 

  • Unfortunately, Australia does indeed have a significant rodent problem, particularly in urban and agricultural areas.
  • Rodents such as rats and mice thrive in a multitude of habitats, including homes, farms, and commercial establishments – anywhere there is shelter and a steady supply of food will do. 
  • Their ability to reproduce at an extremely rapid pace and adapt to different environments is what contributes to their exponential population growth. Now there’s a nice thought to help you sleep at night!  
Close up of Wild Brown Rat (Rattus norvegicus) feeding on stones in water of river

How Did Rodents Get to Australia? When Did They First Arrive?

Would it surprise you to learn that the invasive pest species that terrorise Australian homeowners aren’t in fact native to Australia? The question is, how did they get here? And when did they first arrive? 

  • Rodents were first introduced to Australia by European settlers during the 18th century – though not by design.
  • The reality is, all the ships carrying goods and supplies inadvertently brought rats and mice over with them, which quickly established populations in port cities – only to spread further afield and thrive. 
  • The introduction of rodents had a profound impact on native Australian wildlife, leading to significant disruptions in ecosystems.

What Is the Most Common Rodent in Australia?

So, what is the most common rodent in Australia? And what is the secret to their immense success?

  • The most common rodent in Australia is undoubtedly the House Mouse (aka Mus Musculus).
  • House mice are small and agile rodents that can infest homes, farms, and commercial properties where there is warm shelter, food, and water in abundance.
  • The common House Mouse is known for their ability to squeeze through tiny openings and reproduce rapidly – which is also the key to their successful survivability. 

Which Is the Most Dangerous Rodent in Australia?

Now on to more important matters: which is the most dangerous rodent in Australia? 

  • While all rodents can be considered as pests by homeowners, it is the Black Rat (aka Rattus Rattus) that is particularly concerning.
  • Black rats are incredibly dextrous and skilled climbers and can access upper floors and roof spaces practically effortlessly, causing structural damage and spreading diseases.
  • They are known carriers of various pathogens and pose a potential threat to human health – so be extra careful if you have small children at home.
Mouse killed in a mouse clue tray trap on wooden floor in home

Do Rats and Mice Carry Diseases?

While they might look cute and cuddle, rats and mice can be hazardous to human health. Here’s why:

What Is the Most Effective Way to Deal with a Rodent Infestation at Home?

By this point you are likely keen to learn how one can effectively get rid of these little pests at home. Here’s what you should do: 

  • When dealing with a rodent infestation, the single most effective treatment is to seek professional pest control services. Yes, there are various DIY methods that you can try, but many are ineffective and aren’t worth the time or effort. 
  • Pest control experts have the knowledge, experience, and tools to effectively eliminate rodents from your home as quickly as possible. 
  • Depending on the extent of the infestation, the experts may employ methods such as baiting, trapping, or rodenticide application to successfully handle the situation. 
House Mouse Trapped Inside Mousetrap. Fighting Rodents Theme.

What Are Some Effective Rodent Infestation Prevention Strategies at Home?

Of course, the best offence is a good defence…or was it the other way around? In any case, here are some effective ways to keep rodents from entering your home in the first place – perfect if the thought of rodent extermination doesn’t appeal to you:

  • Seal all of the cracks and openings in walls, floors, and foundations to prevent rodents from entering your home (they can squeeze through the smallest gaps to be vigilant). 
  • Store food in airtight containers and clean up spills and crumbs promptly. Cleaning your kitchen daily might feel like a ball-ache, but you’ll prefer it to an extensive rodent infestation. 
  • Call up a plumber and fix any leaks in your house at rodents who love free-flowing water on demand! 
  • Keep your surroundings clean and clutter-free, reducing potential nesting sites for rodents. Get up in your loft and clear out any old boxes that no longer hold any value. 
  • Be sure to regularly inspect and maintain your property, including checking for signs of rodent activity. It’s also worth considering routine pest inspection from the experts. 


Rodents are a pervasive problem in Australia, with mice and rats being the most common species found in homes. And while they may seem harmless enough, rodents can carry diseases and cause extensive structural damage to property. 

In order to deal with a rodent infestation effectively, we highly recommend that you seek professional pest control services. 

Additionally, by implementing preventive measures such as sealing entry points and maintaining cleanliness, you can significantly minimise the risk of having to deal with future infestations. 

And that about sums it up! We hope you’ve learned something from this article and wish you the best of luck if you are currently dealing with a rodent infestation of your own.

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