So... In 6-7 years of keeping a few chickens in the garden I've never had a
rat problem (that I've known of) until now... And this summer gone we had
some decking laid down and a new garden shed. Evidence suggests they're
living under the shed/decking - holes in the gravel/soil leading under
them, and a hole leading from the outside, under the gravel board to the
inside of the chicken run. Some 2-3" in diameter, so I'm guessing rats.
Best way to kill them dead. I want none of this catch alive and release
nonsense I want them dead. An airgun would be viable, but I really don't
want to spend time down there at night waiting for them. Poison? Don't
want them dying and stinking the place out while they decompose. (I've
smelt dead rat before )-:
I'll be off to the local country/farm shop tomorrow, but suggestions
for a make of trap and bait would be appreciated. Even if it's just
"little nipper, rat size", but if live traps are more efficient than
snap/kill ones that's OK as I have no issues dispatching them if needed.
Do you live in or near an area liable to flooding?
Only ask this because I had a similar occurrence 10 years ago when a 3m dia
water pipe imploded and flooded the local area. The event was about 1 mile
away. Repairs took about 3 months and local damage was extensive.
This drove the rats to pastures new. Bastards totally destroyed my house
How to kill them? Traps or poison. I used a lot of both. One afternoon we
found 7 dead within the house, much to my wifes horror. We were checking
twice daily. In all we knocked off more than 100 of the buggers.
Not a pleasant aroma but it doesn't linger. Not too long anyway.
Forced a total rewire and subsequent redecorating. Not a bad thing really as
both were overdue.
A good thing that this bought about: One morning whilst this was going on
wife says 'we've got a raccoon living in the conservatory with the vermin'.
Unlikely says I but I think we should call it Rocky. Eventually got rid of
the rat problem and Rocky turned out to be a very skittish and fierce
britdom kitten. Very small and had been living with the rats.
Took about 3 months of gentle coaxing before she would come into the house.
Rocky Raccoon is still with us today. Good puss still very small and
Rat poison is good provided you get the industrial variety. Rat sized traps
do the job but you have to remember where you've put them. I prefer poison
as this takes the vermin to water (away from property) and thus negates the
majority of aroma.
Airgun pretty hopeless unless you're good with .177 pistol. Don't use .22.
.410 perhaps. 12 bore could be a little damaging.
Good luck and all the best,
I beg to disagree there...
.22 is great for blatting rats.
.177 doesn't have the same stopping power but I guess your wounded rat
will scuttle off and bleed to death in a hole somewhere but far better
to do a straight kill and be able to clear up the bodies.
No and Yes )-:
Technically yes according to the EA, but it's never flooded. The stream
behind my garden wall is barely any depth right now and we've had a
bit of rain recently. 2 years ago it did rise by about 2m and there was
flooding down the street, but it never entered the garden.
Garden is somewhat distant from the house.
Hm. The council did chop down and cut back a lot of trees 3-4 years back
and then I did see a rat - in the mouth of a local cat. Nothing since.
OK. Thanks. Will check the local farm supplies shop to see what they have.
Poison, much less work than the alternatives.
Even a rat dog is more work because you have to
shift stuff around so the dog can get at the rats.
Yeah, too much farting around.
I don’t find that they stink at all, they just dehydrate here.
I bet the other rats eat the corpse.
That youtube design with a stiff wire thru a decent sized can
with holes in each end for the wire and peanut butter etc on
the can and the whole thing over the top of a decent big
bucket/container half filled with water is trivially easy to make
and works very well indeed.
Too much farting around setting them
and removing the corpses IMO.
With the bucket of water you can just tip the water
out and the corpses into a bin bag and into the bin.
Prevention is best.
You usually find rat problems are cause by access to food.
You'll likely find some idiot it is feeding them.
Horsey types, rabbit/sheep/cattle food thrown on the ground/too much given.
Nitwits and waste food/black plastic bags.
Have a look around nearby, these problems don't appear by magic.
Jeyes Fluid. Out Ratman who used to come out periodically to sort out
the premises I used to work in recommended it. If you can't confine
them, and it sounds as though you can't, you will never kill them. If
you put bait down and kill some they will stink unbelievably badly, as
you say, and more will come in to replace them anyway. You can't shoot
them, there is only one of you and there are millions of them. What you
can do is to make them someone else's problem by discouraging them,
which is what we had to do at the old place.
Our street was linked by old cellars and even older drains, so if you
killed the ones in your cellar more came in from elsewhere. His solution
was - rats always have one spot at each venue that they use as a
lavatory, find that and apply liberal amounts of Jeyes fluid. If you
couldn't find the one spot then flood the area with it. If it's dryish
under there, so much the better, the Jeyes will stay there longer.
Repeated application worked at our place - they just went off to someone
else's cellar that smelt more to their liking. Every year or so they'd
be back, but it kept them away for some time. We even had a trap door
put in the floorboards to ease the application - they're a tad dim and
always came back to exactly the same place under the building.
You could also try rags soaked in old fashioned creosote, or the newer
equivalent - I've never tried it on rats but it keeps foxes and badgers
away if you hang the cloths over their entrance holes to your garden -
so it might work for rats.
A good treadle feeder will allow the chickens access to food (after a littl
e training) but stop the rats feasting. They can be bought or made. They wo
rk by lifting a lid from the front of a hopper when the chicken stands on t
he treadle. A rat can not stand in the right place and reach the food or si
mply is not heavy enough depending on design. I would post links to YouTube
videos showing chickens succeeding and rats failing but the tablet I am us
ing has defeated me.
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