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Rats in the garden

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Beanwood

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My wife breeds and shows maine coon cats but the only one allowed out (the others have a large run) and is now too old to care. In her younger years her record was 10 field voles in a day, rats, pigeons with a live squirrel and a water rail let loose in the house. In earlier days we had a moggie that we found tucking into a rat under our bed FFS.
We have 2 maine coons. Trouble is they're so laid back, they can't be bothered with sitting there for hours hunting rats. They will get the occasional one though. (The feral cat that turned up on the farm one day was far more successful before he died 😢 )
Our working line labradors though - well - those rats had better watch out. (It's only the electric fence that we have protecting teh chickens from the fox that saves he rats from the dogs....)
Air rifle gets a few - but not many tbh - rats are clever, fast, and can work out quickly where you shoot from!
Glue traps are very effective, but need a lot of care - and you need to kill the b***gers your - self - and the screaming whilst they're stuck is HORRIBLE.
Jack Russell is the answer - but if you don't have access then poison probably - and coated corn grains in my experience.
 

Tris

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Rats are incredibly wary of anything new so I've found that if using traps bait them but leave them unset for a few days, replenish the bait daily. Once they get used to the trap as a food source then start setting it. You should probably be tethering the traps just in case.
Bait boxes with blocks or tube feeders with grain bait would be my choice, though I think the loose bait requires you to have a pest control certificate now to buy it (iirc)
 

Oakay

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By the way when I was a nipper my Dad opened the pantry door one evening a rat was staring him in the face on the shelf in front of his face. He went to the kitchen, grabbed the biggest saucepan, tucked his trouser legs into his socks, went back, bashed the rat to death in one hit. The saucepan came off its handle but he fixed that later. I am not recommending tackling a cornered rat but they say fortune favours the bold. Maybe some Berserker blood in his ancestry :)
 

Owd Jockey

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About this time of year one or two rats make an appearance in my garden. I use a poisoned bait station, with the bait secured on small metal pins. They genera;lly take the bait. But unless you see the body you don't know if you got them. I used to use a large Rat Trap, I killed one once using that. However, the following year I caught a blackbird, I then I hid the trap where I thought birds would not get, unfortunately I caught a robin... I vowed never to use this device again. I also use a trap cage and caught a rat last year. Occassionally you might catch a bird, but they are unharmed when you release them. If using a cage I would advise checking the cage regularly throughout the day. I dispatch any rat caught with my air rifle at point blank range.
 

johnny

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yes we also have had rats because of the amount of bird seed that fell to the ground from the bird feeders. Our 2x cats have dispatched all of the young rats but the adults were too smart.

We fitted plastic seed bowls to the bottom of our feeders to prevent spillage and stopped putting out loose bird food and eventually that did the trick as they stopped breeding and moved away.

You need to remove their food source and block off or open up their nesting site to make it unusable

I would strongly advise you not to use pest control and poisons because then you'll have sick poisoned rats around the garden for days whilst they are dying which your pets or young children can catch and play with
 

Allen Quay

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I would strongly advise you not to use pest control and poisons because then you'll have sick poisoned rats around the garden for days whilst they are dying which your pets or young children can catch and play with
I had at least two rats running around my garden for several days, until I put down the tamper proof bait boxes and poison blocks (that I linked to in my previous post). I haven't seen any rats since then and I never saw any dead or dying rats in my garden either.
 

Fitzroy

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Every time I see this thread title in the 'new posts' list all I get is UB40 in my head for the rest of the day. Enjoy your earworm everyone, and goodluck with the rat problem.
 

stuart little

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make a crossbow to shoot them? could be a fun project.
I've got a crossbow, built from a kit -(35 yrs ago), the bolts will penetrate car panels & have a range of about 1/4 mile ! They're not illegal to own BUT it's illegal to hunt with one, but maybe ok on own property.
 

Mark Karacsonyi

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We have a stream at the bottom of our garden, well a small river actually. In the middle is a small island, where we keep ducks. Since our neighbour has been keeping ferrets, and will bring a couple over on a Sunday afternoon. A good excuse for a beer or two, our rat problem has gone away.
 

Jacob

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Seems to be a lot of excitement about a few rats! What about some sort of automatic movement-detecting machine gun, or rat sized land-mines? :LOL:
Personally, if there's just a couple of them occasionally skipping about, unless they are a nuisance - getting into the house etc - I'd leave them alone. They are all over the place anyway and any you pick off will soon be replaced, probably with younger and fitter ones!
 
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recipio

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They are agile little beggars and mostly nocturnal. I once saw one jump from the ground up to the rafters in my shed - about 8 feet. Having found a few empty traps I concluded that the inertia of the trap was making it jump - and ratty got away. Now I screw the trap down to a piece of 2 x 4, bait the trap with peanut butter and get excellent results.
 

gregmcateer

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Amazon have a metal 'box' with entry / exit and side chamber. Poison in side chamber. No pet can get to it.
Bet you need to have an app installed that rings the b****y door bell and then Amazon start advertising rubber gloves and disposal equipment to you for the next 4 weeks 😂😂
 

gog64

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Every time I see this thread title in the 'new posts' list all I get is UB40 in my head for the rest of the day. Enjoy your earworm everyone, and goodluck with the rat problem.
I have a even worse ear worm. My last excavator was a big old thing with lots of extra “air vents” that the manufacturer didn’t install. I clambered up one day and found a dirty great rat sitting on my seat. Almost instantly UB40 started playing in my head “there’s a rat in me digger what am I gonna do?”. Apparently my wife and kids are going to divorce me if I sing that ever again:(
 

fenhayman

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Weil's disease. Google it. Saw many cases on farms 60 years ago. Spread by rats and a serious problem for humans. They should be eliminated. The rats that is.
 

Fergie 307

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I have them under the neighbours shed, holes under the fence where they get into my garden. I simply shove bait blocks into the space under the shed, then put bricks down at the bottom of the fence to stop my dogs getting at the bait. When the blocks no longer get eaten you know the rats have had it, usually a couple of weeks. Only occasionally had a dead one turn up in the garden.
 

Serendipity Gunge

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Rats are very intelligent creatures.
If you are using a trap, then bait it but don't set it. Do this for about a week. Then set it! This strategy usually works.
 

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