Rat spotted

YviestevieYviestevie Kingswinford, West MidlandsPosts: 4,786

Let me start off by saying that I really do try and garden for wildlife.  Frogs, bees, birds, insects, even mice are welcome in my garden.  However, I cant stand rats.  This morning I spotted one eating the seed that the birds had dropped from the feeder.  Now I had to work long and hard to get a feeding station in my garden as hubby declared 'if you're not careful you'll attract rats".  I simply cant bear to tell him he's right so if someone has an idea of how I can rid myself of roddy please let me know.

Hi from Kingswinford in the West Midlands
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  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 54,527

    When I had a similar problem I got a rat bait station and the appropriate bait and placed it in undergrowth along the bottom of the boundary fence (rats like to travel alongside walls/fences - they don't like crossing open ground). 

    The problem was solved in a few days and we've not been troubled since. 

    Until you've got the problem sorted, restrict the bird food to fat blocks, peanuts and coconut halves on a shepherd's crook pole that the rats can't climb.

    Good luck.

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







  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 14,736

    The rats are there whether you feed the birds or not. They just become more visible if there is food to make them hang around in one place.

    A large cat or a small dog will tidy up a few of them, especially the young ones.

    If you can't entertain a pet, try hanging a tray of some kind under the feeders. We use the big drip trays for large flower pots. Make four holes in the edge of the tray, thread string through and attach the ither end of the string to the bottom of the feeders. If it's a wire feeder it's easy, if it's a wooden one, knock four staples around the edges of the base. That way the seed never touches the ground but just gets hoovered up by the birds.

    Not much point in poisoning or trapping as they will only be replaced by more rats which are attracted to the food.

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 24,545

    What a pain Yvie. I find at this time of year the birds aren't as interested in food because there's still plenty around naturally, so I start off slowly and only put small amounts out and that ensures it's all cleared by nightfall. It's usually when there's excess food lying on the ground during the night that the problem's most likely to occur - easy pickings. Perhaps you could try clearing the ground each day before it's dark - and even bring hanging feeders in as well for a while - and hope he goes off to find another hotel. image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • YviestevieYviestevie Kingswinford, West MidlandsPosts: 4,786

    Thanks for the advice I'd already planned to stop feeding the seed for a while but I like the idea of fixing pot saucers under the feeders.  That would also help with the seeds dropping and taking root.  Ill try these measures first before resulting to any other measures.

    Hi from Kingswinford in the West Midlands
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 24,545

    Hope you can sort it Yvie. They're opportunists so if you remove the banquet it may be enough to send him off somewhere else. It would be a shame if you had to remove your bird feeding areas altogether after working so hard to get them. image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • Lupin 1Lupin 1 Posts: 8,916

    I'm in the corner for putting down a rat station. If there is one in evidence they'll be more and probably lots. Mice at the top of the garden fine, live & let live, but not if they are in shed or seen near the garage, don't want freezer wiring nibbled etc.  I'll get my tin hat ready image 

  • I was told by a local council Environmental person ( aka a Rat Man I suppose ), that if there was only the odd one or two, the best method was to clear any food stations and  stop putting out any food for the birds for 3 weeks or so. The rats would then move off to another kind person's property.  It did seem to work image

  • ClaringtonClarington Posts: 4,949

    We use plastic picnic plates under out feeders to catch the seed spills - they're either drilled and zip strapped on or just glued on with my hot glue gun (I got lazy). They don't catch all the seeds but certainly slow the rate that hit the floor.

    I hope you manage to persuade ratty that your feeders aren't worth the effort! 

  • hi my husband shoots them them!

    I agree they are rather horrid things trouble is he shot the mother and all the youngsters died

    really horrid pong from under the shed for days

    the joys of feeding birds.

  • Gillian53Gillian53 Posts: 112

    We have them come under the fence from te overgrown land at the back of us. They are after all the bits of sunflower hearts that the birds drop. I tend to think that as long as there is food over by the fence they won't be coming over to the house. Hopefully!

    We once had a tall pole for the feeders and they managed to scale that. I wondered where all the muddy streaks were coming from. 

     

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