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Rats!

Discussion in 'Personal' started by BertieBassett2, Feb 26, 2020.

  1. BertieBassett2

    BertieBassett2 Star commenter

    Does anyone know how to rid a property of rats? A friend of mine has recently moved and they can hear scratching and scuttling noises and have found droppings under the upstairs floorboards. They have a pest control expert coming but they have been given conflicting advice about them and it seems laying traps is a waste of time, as apparently rats are suspicious of new food sources. It may be they will need a drainage expert to come to try to find any 'nest' or community within the sewer. I'm not sure what advice anyone can give but anecdotes are always interesting and might point to something they haven't thought of. TIA.
     
  2. Wotton

    Wotton Lead commenter

    We had them outside under the patio. I went for poison as I didn't want them getting into the house.Are they buying or renting? If renting the landlord should deal with it and if they have just bought then the sellers should have sorted it so they may have some comeback on them.
    Find where they got into the house and it may be worth checking the sewer via the inspection hatch.
    In a friends case they got into the cavity wall and then up into the attic. I believe they used poison. The problem with poison is that you end up with dead rats under the floors.
     
    BertieBassett2 likes this.
  3. Jamvic

    Jamvic Star commenter

    Better than having live ones continually breeding. :eek:
     
    BertieBassett2 likes this.
  4. BertieBassett2

    BertieBassett2 Star commenter

    They have bought the house and this is just one of many problems they have had! Probably the worst one, in fact. They are loath to use poison as they have a cat and then of course the dead rats have to be located somehow - even with a strong smell it isn't always an indication of exactly where they are.
     
  5. Wotton

    Wotton Lead commenter

    Trapping will work but it will take longer as the rats need to get used to/accept the traps and food inside. It was the very dry weather in 2018 and the bird food which brought them into our garden.
    I hope they find a solution soon but I'd check whether there is any comeback on the seller.
     
    BertieBassett2 likes this.
  6. May2

    May2 Established commenter

    Our garden is the ideal habitat for rats being beside a field with a drainage ditch running along the edge of our garden. we know they are never far away and have seen them climb on the bird feeders in the past. Outside they are not too bad but we had them in the kitchen cupboards 7 years ago and it took a lot of trays of poison to get rid of them. The rat expert couldn't see where they were getting in.

    Last December we went away for 3 weeks. We had seen one rat in the garden a few weeks earlier so my husband thought it a good idea to put some poison in the kitchen cupboard and in one of the bedroom eaves cupboards where we had had mice or rats before. When we came home after our wonderful holiday we were greeted with shards of wood they had chewed off the bottom of one of our kitchen base units and lots of fluff in our utility room pulled out from behind the washing machine. The poison had been eaten in the kitchen and bedroom and there was a major infestation in the loft with loads of rat poo all over the insulating material. To cap it all the TV didn't work and no recordings that had been set were done as the aerial was chewed.

    We got in another rat expert who put trays of rat poison in the loft and a box of poison in the garden. He looked around for how they were getting in and decided they were probably climbing up through trailing plants we had growing against our garage, getting up onto a wall and running across up to the roof. We were advised to cut down all these plants. When we did this we found insulating material in amongst the plants. The rats went mad the night after. We could hear them all when we were in bed. We had stopped their escape route. All went quiet a couple of days later and we have had no more since. We have put cameras up there now!

    We thought they were back a couple of weeks ago but it turned out we had mice!
    We have no dead rat smell only a little dead mice smell in corner of loft now. Apparently dead rat is a much more powerful smell!
     
    BertieBassett2 likes this.
  7. BertieBassett2

    BertieBassett2 Star commenter

    That's worth pursuing - thanks for that.
    They are cunning critters, that's for sure!
     
  8. lindenlea

    lindenlea Star commenter

    We moved into a house that had been empty for two weeks and they got into the kitchen through small spaces at the bottom of the outside wall brick work which had been exposed by the gravel being dug away. They had run up into the cavity and into the backs of the kitchen cupboards. My husband blocked up all the gaps under the gravel and all the gaps in the cupboards. They tried to dig down under the gravel for a few days but after then they didn't come back
     
  9. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    We had a rat in the cellar. The pest man put down poison which the rat never touched. The pest man reckoned he was just coming in for warmth as he never left the boiler room. There was no obvious way in and after a bit he stopped coming. The pile of delicious poisoned food remained exactly as it had been when it was put down. Eventually I made a bonfire and took the poisoned food out to burn it, as instructed. Just after I'd put it on the fire, it started to rain! Luckily there was enough fire to keep burning.
     
  10. Duke of York

    Duke of York Star commenter

    You'd need to prove the seller was aware of the rats and there's not much hope of that. We had a brief infestation of rats about ten years ago. The rat catcher told us it was because they were replacing some sewers in the town centre, ten miles away. Apparently everyone was getting them. He dealt with our problem, then a couple of months later, the field at the bottom of our garden was ploughed and we had them back.

    They are going to live somewhere and if their habitat gets disturbed, they'll find another. It only takes a day.
     
    BertieBassett2 likes this.
  11. magic surf bus

    magic surf bus Star commenter

    I worked in a historic building for the local Council a few years and rats were a routine problem there.

    One went sauntering past me as I sat at the till and trotted up the stairs as bold as brass. I strung a few blue bait blocks of doom onto a wire attached to a heavy object and left it under the stairs. The next time I turned up for work the rat had very considerately expired outside the front door. However, they can expire elsewhere.

    We got some rat catchers in at the Council's expense who laid all manner of bait and snap traps all over the place and they caught sod all.

    As a cat owner I understand the concern about cats, but a cat that roams free must encounter poisoned beasties on its perambulations anyway, whether you lay bait or not. Bearing in mind rats can carry Weill's Disease I'd go for the fast and dirty method - the blue bait blocks of doom attached to something unmovable so they can't be dragged elsewhere. Mice positively throw themselves at the stuff. Also, rodents usually navigate alongside walls, so lay the bait next to a wall on one of their known routes.
     
  12. BertieBassett2

    BertieBassett2 Star commenter

    Yes, DoY - caveat emptor and all that.
    They are going to put their faith in the pest control expert.
     
  13. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    Buy a cat... indicate to the cat that it must kill the rats... turn away... listen carefully to the whispering... as they plot together... watch as you hunt the rats for the cat as it sits impassively watching you... find your food disappearing and the bathroom locked when you want to go in... the temperature adjusted to their preferred setting... your bed now rat/cat central... build a time machine... go back and don't buy a cat.
     
  14. stopwatch

    stopwatch Lead commenter

    Has your friend employed a commercial pest control expert? She should contact her local council, who may do it for free.
    I live in Birmingham and have a had a rat/rats at various points over the last 5 years. The council sends their rat man around for free and he sets the poison in a safe place and comes back to check. If the rats are indoors, you should get priority. If you have children, even more so.
    The fact is that rats are everywhere (the saying is that you are never more than 2 metres away from one).
     
    BertieBassett2 likes this.
  15. colpee

    colpee Star commenter

    Rats like to be near a food source, so it would be worth having a scout around the neighbourhood to locate and hopefully fix possible sources (unlidded bins, scraps of food put out for birds, junk food getting dumped, fly tipping etc) or else after a while the problem may reccur.
     
    caress and BertieBassett2 like this.
  16. irs1054

    irs1054 Star commenter

    OK we have cats (3) and we have rats and we are in the process of selling. Fortunately the rats are not in the house though they are all over the garden. This is just a fact of life when you live in the country.

    I haven't put any poison down because of the cats (and hens, did I mention them?) so I will have to leave it for the next owner to deal with them.

    None of the questions we were asked mentioned anything about pests.
     
  17. Duke of York

    Duke of York Star commenter

    Pest control experts say rodents rely on "muscle memory", which essentially means they are most comfortable following routes they take regularly. Our language contains terms like rat runs and cornered rat, so maybe we can learn something from this.

    A cornered rat is said to be viscious and if you think of it in terms that the rat's options in terms of familiar routes to run have been closed off and it doesn't instictive know where else to escape to, it will put up a fight to the death, as might any of us.

    That's the simplest thing to do. The cat may never get the chance to catch a rat, or a mouse for that matter, because it would be as insane for a rat or mouse to live in close proximity to a cat, as it would be for a human to live where tigers and lions run freely.

    Same with burglars and dogs. It ain't worth the risk or being caught if you break into a home and disturb a dog. There'll always be another home to burgle that doesn't have a dog.
     
  18. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    I once came home and found the cat sitting in the middle of the conservatory staring up... just sat staring.

    I thought nothing of it and head back into the house when I caught movement out the corner of my eye. Turning around I looked up and saw a brown furry face looking down at me from the blinds railing. Our guess... the cat had brought the rat in, it'd got away from him and had scurried up the blinds to escape.

    So I had to get a pan and urge the rat into the pan... eventually I managed it and disposed of the [still living, though rather angry] rat over the fence.
     
    primarycat and BertieBassett2 like this.
  19. emerald52

    emerald52 Star commenter

    You can buy a foam that hardens round kitchen unit gaps and sonic devices to scare them off. Council do poisonings.
     
    BertieBassett2 likes this.
  20. sunshineneeded

    sunshineneeded Star commenter

    This is not a problem I'd even try to deal with myself - would call in experts straight away!
     
    BertieBassett2 likes this.

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