Rats in attic insulation...

Got a bit of a rat problem. Some rats are living in the small roofspace (8 feet x 3 feet x 4 feet approx) above my kitchen which juts out from the main house. They're also heard in the main attic, and in the wall cavity of both houses. The local council only provides an advisory service and say the house (and adjoining neighbour's house) has had a long history of rats, and cant offer any further advice. I've got 4 B&Q rat traps in the main attic, and 9 of them in the small kitchen attic - most baited with chocolate and chocolate biscuits. I check the roofspaces every fortnight and no traps have been touched. There's some poison up there too, B&Q rat killer stuff, but it hasnt been eaten.
In the small roofspace above the kitchen, I can see tunnels in the insulation where they're living and any time I poke my head up there I hear them scurrying away into the tunnels.
Had a drain specialist out who put cameras down the drains, but came up with no sources of entry. Found a possible point of entry and have blocked it up, so there may be no way for them to get out. In any case, i'd like them to leave in a rat trap so I can be sure they're dead and out, and dont cause a stink in an inaccessible place.
I've had a cat for a year now. I've let it have a sniff around in the main attic and even brushed it up there to get its hairs around to put the rats off settling there. Doesnt seem to have had any effect.
Considering getting protective equipment and pulling all the insulation down from above the kitchen, unless any of you can give me any advice. I imagine they may attack when I start dismantling their "home".
Any advice?
thanks, Mark.
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Mark wrote:

can't imagine the council saying it's not a (their) problem, we have had them in at work re ants, and they've sprayed and allsorts, eventhough, technically ants are not a health hazard, rats on the other hand certainly are. not that hta'ts any immeadiate help to you i know but really i think the council should be more concerned/help. for instance quick google show that sailibery offer no charge rat control services for domestic living; http://www.salisbury.gov.uk/living/pest-control/charges.asp
sammi
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Lucky you! My local council, http://www.castlereagh.gov.uk/faq/FAQS3.htm They only give out free advice.
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just seen off 16 of the pesky beggers, did not catch one in the loft space, even though they were up there alongside traps. i put the traps at the side of the house beside the entry points. I used cage traps and tied bacon with cotton thread to the trigger, and set the trigger as sensitivly as possible. I took about 3 months and I got 15 this way. Number 16 was stupid enough to run across the conservatory while i had a screwdriver in my hand.
happy hunting
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where did you get the cage traps or did you make them yourself?
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I bought two in a local shop the other two are borrowed from next door. His solution was two cats. Similar traps are the top two on this page
http://www.trap-man.com/rat-traps.htm
the Modern Live capture"Family"Rat Trap being the best
happy hunting
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They are neophobic for a start, also look for signs on the ground outside - sort of "mini-troughs" in soil, holes in fencing with greasy edges, undergrowth with tunnels through it. If they're not eating the food you provide (i.e. on the traps and in the bait trays) ask yourself whose food they are eating and how are they getting it? They're not going to eat what you provide if they're getting their fill elsewhere :)
--
john

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On Sat, 21 Feb 2004 23:39:25 -0000, "Mark"

Put your cat on a diet. It might develop a taste for fresh rat ;)
Only kidding. I wonder if it would be worth putting one of those ultrasonic devices up there - nothing to lose except the 15 purchase price and if it works it would be a cheap option:
http://www.maplin.co.uk
Search for "pest repellent".
PoP
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main
rats
Already thought of that idea: bought one from B&Q last week and when I took it home, the small print instructions inside said that it would not work through objects such as walls or windows. I assume it wont work through the plasterboard or insulation, so I took it back. Anyway, from what I read on here, not many people claim they work. Mark.
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On Sun, 22 Feb 2004 09:57:09 -0000, "Mark"

High frequency won't penetrate boards or walls, unless it is delivered at significant power. The idea would be to put it directly where the varmints run.
As for whether they work or not I can't comment. But given the circumstances I would be inclined to give it a go - after all, you can always try it out for a couple of days then take it back to B&Q if it changes nothing! And if it did work then you've got a cheap solution!
PoP
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.com> writes

Bet they would if their chief executive lived there:-(

So just where are they getting their daily bread?.

Well the stink will fade after a while.

Starve cat and leave in roofspace for a day or so;-).
In a recent survey 99.999% of domestic cats were obese....

Have you tried asking the local pest control services in the private sector?..
--
Tony Sayer


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It sounds to me like you need the services of a professional pest control man (or woman). - not very DIY I know.
I had one round last year. - I had rats in a ceiling.
He used some blocks of poison, which I believe are only available to professionals. - I think the manufacturer is sorex. - http://www.sorex.com /
We managed to keep my rat out by blocking it's entry point.
Apparently rats love the blocks he put down, and if one was still around it would definitely taken it. - he told me he recently put 12 quite large blocks down in a farm with a rat problem - they ate the lot.
Interestingly he used wire to fix the block to the ceiling joist, that way the rat couldn't run off with it to it's hidy hole and it meant that he could examine it to see how much had been taken.
Also, he told me that by law, all traps must be checked every 24 hours. A trap may not instantly kill, and may cause unneccesary suffering.
By the way, you do want to get rid of them - for some reason they love to chew mains wiring.
Regards,
Chris.
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On 22 Feb 2004 14:23:25 -0800, Chris Howard wrote:

And a rat trapped by something "disposable" like a leg or tail will gnaw through trapped part to escape. All we ever caught of the three rats that tried to join us was 2" of tail and a blood stain...
--
Cheers snipped-for-privacy@howhill.com
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snipped-for-privacy@chris-howard.fsnet.co.uk (Chris Howard) wrote in

They (rats) have been known to carry bones from graveyards - lift your floorboards and it looks like a serial killer's being busy :)
One option would be to invest in a pair of night vision goggles and wait for them armed with an air rifle. Just a thought.
--
john

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A very entertaining idea, and would be one to pursue if the rats were in the open. thanks anyway, Mark.
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Its beginning to look that way... Thanks for the link, btw.

So I've heard. I was thinking of getting up into the small roofspace this saturday with a long cable, the other end would be connected to a 13A plug socket downstairs. By poking the cable in through the insulation into their home, I may be able to electrocute a few. I'll just need to be careful not to touch the live part of the cable myself... Surely this would kill them?
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I doubt it would, unless you can get both live & neutral to make contact (& not touch each other.) The rat is not going to have a very good connection to earth. They might feel a bit of a tingle but that's about all.
--
Tim Mitchell

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wrote in message

Life of Grime where the rat had died after chewing one of the wires under the bonnet of a car?? The heat accelerated decomposition. CSI demonstrated how even low voltages can kill providing the current crosses the heart. If that's a human, it must apply to rat surely??
--
john

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Low voltages can kill - but you need a VERY good connection with LOW resistance to get enough current to flow. Skin (and hair I think) have fairly high resistance. In the CSI episode the skin was wet which lowers the resistance.
Either way this doesn't sound like a good way to kill rats.
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Yes, a high voltage will tend to flow around the outside of a body (think van der Graf generator. The car rat died because of the current a car battery will kick out, not the fact it was only 12V.

No, poison/traps/shooting them is better.
Peter
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