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July magazine ... large pest problems solved ...

DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 82,254
I’ve just received July’s magazine in which Alan Titchmarsh has an article on dealing with ‘large pests’ ie rats, mice, foxes, squirrels etc. 

The caption to one pic states ‘Bait rats using a cage trap and then release them humanely’. 

I would never release rats on someone else’s property and if I released them on my own property there would’ve been no point in trapping them. 

If we have an influx of rats on our property I have always used an appropriate rodenticide in a safe bait box, or employed a reputable pest control company. 

What is the point of trapping and releasing rats?  Releasing rats on other people’s land could cause all sorts of problems, including endangering the nests of small and ground nesting birds.  

I think this article needs re-thinking. 

“I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh



  • TheveggardenerTheveggardener Posts: 1,057
    Doveformabove, While in the garden I had to block up several holes made by rate's with bricks. They are coming from the property over the back to us as the weeds bramble, bindweed and others are all up our fence and they can't use their garden. If we took them and released them, it would most likely find it's way back unless we drove it miles away and released it but then we are just giving someone else our problem and that's wrong. So like you we have bait stations. This however is an on going problem and we are all very unlikely to be completely rid of them.
  • raisingirlraisingirl East Devon, on the Edge of Exmoor.Posts: 6,328
    I didn't think you were allowed to release rats into the wild. I may have made that up
    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first” 
  • YviestevieYviestevie Kingswinford, West MidlandsPosts: 6,899
    I wouldn't release them.  Get the rat catcher in and get it sorted.
    Hi from Kingswinford in the West Midlands
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 82,254
    Apparently DEFRA says brown rats can be released as long as it’s not onto private land ... where does that mean?

     Public land means parks maybe?  

    It certainly doesn’t mean onto farmland ... farms are private property and farmers work hard to keep rats away from the food they’re growing for us to eat. 

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • BijdezeeBijdezee BPosts: 1,484
    edited June 2019
    You are right Dove, seems like a badly thought out article.

    Where is 'the wild' with regard to rats anyway? They tend to be a lot where humans are due to waste or farms etc with livestock. I don't really thi k there is a wild for them they are pests, carry disease and numbers have to be kept down. Living with a dyke/field canal at the back of us we sometimes get them and my hubby has invested in an air gun, being military he is a crack shot. We have tried rat poison and traps but they avoid the traps and steal the bait and seem resistant to the poison. Swift despatch that's what i say. 

  • TheveggardenerTheveggardener Posts: 1,057
    Don't think I've ever seen a brown rat only grey ones.
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 21,141
    The only poison we have found to kill them quickly is Neosorexa Gold,  our farmers store rarely has it in but we got some from eBay this time. Pour directly down the hole put a brick on top. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • Unfortunately, due to their prolific reproduction rates, Rats have to be kept in check, I have witnessed captive bred, free flying Owls decapitated by extremely large swarms of rats, and once seen, never forgotten, it was utterly Horrendous, and somewhat scary too, I always kept my Raptors free flying in large flights, and on many occasions they would catch their own meals, so for me, laying poison was not an option. So I would stake out a chicken carcass left over from the roast, and sit at my window with my Air rifle, I were no more than 8 feet from the carcass, and this gave me a quick,clean & humane kill.  I was not happy with myself, but seeing a swarm of several hundreds of rats, kinda spurs one to action.
  • LoxleyLoxley NottinghamPosts: 4,976
    edited September 2019
    Perhaps by 'release them humanely', Alan means to release them humanely from this material realm.
  • wild edgeswild edges The north west of south east WalesPosts: 8,877
    Swarms of rats usually indicates an abundance of food somewhere. If people stopped being so messy and wasteful they certainly would be less of a problem. I've had no problems with them for a year or more now since the farmer up the road gave up his tenancy. Before that he had a lot of chickens and ducks up there and I'd be shooting a rat every week as they dispursed and found my bird feeders.

    A note to shooters though. Lead ammunition is pretty terrible for soil and wildlife so if you use it don't leave the carcasses to be scavenged and dispose of them properly. Lead free pellets are available and are pretty good for close range work.
    Tradition is just peer pressure from dead people
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