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Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 10:13 am
When I was 18, I spent the summer on the island of Jersey. I had a job waitressing at a tourist's nightclub in St Ouens Bay. A couple of coachloads of tourists would come for dinner, dancing and a floor show. The floor show consisted of a scantily clad young lady fire-eating and dancing with a pair of fully grown pythons. We became friends and when she became ill, she asked me to look after her pythons. For three weeks those two pythons and I went almost everywhere together. I used to carry them around my neck (one at a time) the 100 feet on to the beach, where they would guard my bag and towel, whilst I went swimming. They used to love it when I rubbed baby oil into their skins, to keep them in good condition and at night they slept in their solarium in my room.
I recount this long anecdote simply to show that I am not the sort of woman who can't deal with a spider in the bath, BUT I have an unaccountable fear and loathing of rats.
I had never actually seen a rat in my life until I moved here. The first night, I got up to use the loo and there was a rat in the living room. HORRORS! They are vine rats or tree rats and they move from tree to tree through my neighbours derelict land.
We immediately got some rat poison and tied it to the smaller, higher branches of the trees. That did the trick and worked well for the next three years. However, a few of the village cats decided to move in with us and we stopped using the poison in case they ate the poisoned bodies of the rats. The rats have been building up their population and are back in large numbers.
WHAT CAN I DO????
Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 11:05 am
Daisy wrote:...However, a few of the village cats decided to move in with us and we stopped using the poison in case they ate the poisoned bodies of the rats...
The village cats were undoubtedly around long before they "moved in" with you, Daisy and most probably wandered through your property at night. If they didn't eat the poisoned bodies then I doubt if they will do it now. A rat will only attack you if it is cornered and then they are remarkably vicious. Otherwise they will just run away. Rats are highly commensal, almost universally so in the UK but probably a bit less here, so whatever you do there will still be rats near you.
Pity you don't still have the pythons. They might be pretty effective at reducing the population but, unfortunately, also for the cats.
Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 11:54 am
Warwick, all of our three cats came to us as abandoned tiny kittens. The last one was one of four siblings born in a neighbours garden. We took all four in when their mother left. Within a few weeks, three of those kittens died of poison. I think that it was nothing to do with rat bodies. Any rat bodies would have been in the opposite neighbour's garden. The kittens were still very small and would have had great difficulty accessing and returning from that garden. I think that someone in the village was putting down poison for the village cats and three of our new kittens succumbed.
However, my husband disagrees and will absolutely not use poison again.
So, any ideas?
Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 12:40 pm
We've had success with the large plastic rat traps (from Stivaktakis agricultural shop, or Manos next to the traffic lights in Sitia), baited with crunchy peanut butter. I will absolutely not use poison - not only because of the danger to our dogs, but in order not to have poisoned rats entering the wider food chain. If vermin must be killed (and I accept that they do) then it must be instant. Prior to using the traps we had multiple hundreds of euros' damage to the car from rats/mice getting in to the engine compartment and eating a good part of the wiring. We now put traps under the car every night!
Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 1:33 pm
My neighbours constantly complain about the number of mice we have in and around the village. However, any sighting of a snake in the undergrowth results in its immediate bludgeoning to death with the nearest available stick.
Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 3:09 pm
I to have had a big problem with rats re car brand new car four months old chewed through wires behind bulkhead under bonnet fixed myself after unbolting most of bulkhead a lot of work, swearing ,and cut hands later fixed.
Next job kill anything ratlike six plastic US made rat traps set every night peanut butter best bait (will not use poison got cats dogs and see to many dead owls and birds of prey) over the 2 months cought 74 rats thouht problem solved looked under bonnet every day for weeks nothing, then one day warning light on in car same wires as befor plus a few extra ones.
traps set more rats looked on internet clear all vegitation near car so grape vines gone ,bourganvilla gone ect also placed 2 very bright lights under car as rats like dark areas to nest no rats so far.
Apparantly this problem is increasing on newer cars a lot now due to the green tree huggers not wanting man made insulation on cars, so someone had the bright idea to make all the wire insulation from a soya based product to be biodegradable rat food well done.
More ways to kill the little buggers that work (Bicarb suger and flour or oats in equal parts)Bicarb mixes with rat gut fluid much gas internal explosion it work will not kill anything else. Oats chocolate powder fast setting cement or filler end result
internal explosion it works. Air rifle works to a point, shovel to batter works to a point can damage car,cats work to a point ours has no teeth now and when she had teeth she just looked at them as the biggest one I killed was 19inches from nose to tip of tail,dogs good to a point they spend hours trying to catch them , the last one I have not tried yet a bit controversial, some people say it is cruel (like the above are not) is anti freeze they say it works a treat but it must be in a container that only rats can get in as other animals will drink it.
Also snap traps only kill about 90% of the time you have to finnish it off, all other rat killing tips welcom sorry to offend any rat lovers.
Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 3:21 pm
altohb wrote:We've had success with the large plastic rat traps
What do you do with the rats when you've caught them in the traps? Several years ago we were looking at mouse traps and the assistant suggested cage traps so that we could take the mice and set them free somewhere else after we had caught them! We stuck with traditional mouse traps baited with squished up avocado.
Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 3:29 pm
These are the killing kind, Margarita. We sometimes catch tiny live mice in them - they get a second chance and are released well away from the house. We tried humane traps originally - totally useless. These are the only method I will use. Those mentioned above are abhorrent to me.
Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 3:38 pm
If cought in a trap they go on top of carport roof for owls or birds always gone ,live traps sound good release to near they just run back home seen it, to far away they die no home or killed by local rats and a big rat in a live trap is not going lick your finger to say thanks, there are always rats around my house if they leave me alone ok but they take over and can cost a lot of time and money.
Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 7:15 pm
Was the dancer with the snakes called Lorna by any chance Daisy?
Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 7:16 pm
Was the dancer with the snakes called Lorna by any chance Daisy?
Posted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 8:39 am
Altohb,thank-you for the information. I will get him indoors to sort the traps out, as I am a wimp, when it comes to rats.
Louise. My memory is rubbish, especially for names. It was a very long time ago. What I remember most about my summer in Jersey, was, falling madly in love with an Italian waiter, who worked at the Waters Edge Hotel, in Bouley Bay. Listening to Donovan give an open air concert at a sports ground in St Helier. Watching the surfers at the Watersplash in St Ouens Bay, going to all the bunker parties at the weekends and of course, looking after my lovely Pythons.
The place I worked at was further north along St Ouens Bay than The Watersplash. It was called, The Chateaux de Plaisir. Great name, but very tame. Just dinner and dancing for mainly middle-aged couples.
Posted: Sun Sep 24, 2017 4:08 pm
Don't remember Dylan, but know the rest of the places of course.
Sure it was Lorna, she did have a past as a snake act, and in later years started a Driving School which she called "Safari". Ah Happy Days. !
Posted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 8:41 pm
Well, it is now a month since my husband bought 4 rat traps and a jar of crunchy peanut butter as bait for them. The first night we used them.....nothing. The second night, 2 dead rats! Since then, only one more dead rat. At this rate, considering that they often have litters of between 6 and 13, we are not winning. The bait is usually taken by mice. They do not trigger the trap but escape easily. Each morning, the bait is gone, but the traps have not been triggered.
Does anyone have the phone number of the Pied Piper?
Posted: Wed Oct 25, 2017 4:03 pm
Search Youtube for rat traps homemade and you'll find some ingenious designs.
Suspend perforated containers of naphthalene around your car engine compartment to deter vermin. This stuff evaporates so replenish as necessary.