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so tired of this! Rats visit my coops every night.

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I blocked all holes in the coop but rats still come in from the roofing. Am afraid I can't poison them cos my girls might be poisoned too. The rats poo in the drinker making the water bad before morning.
post #2 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by umarson View Post

I blocked all holes in the coop but rats still come in from the roofing. Am afraid I can't poison them cos my girls might be poisoned too. The rats poo in the drinker making the water bad before morning.

Use the poison. The rats will eat eggs and adult chickens. Remove water and feed later in the day so it won't become contaminated over night. Where rats are concerned I know of no other way of getting rid of them. Good luck.
post #3 of 6
It was expensive, but I invested in a grandpas feeder. If you can't afford that & are handy I've seen
Treadle feeder instructions on utube. Not only can the rats etc. not get into it, but there is a wire over the food where the birds eat..it saves feed cost because they're unable to toss it around/out and be choosy! You should have seen the size of the rat we killed in our coop! It was literally the size of a house cat. He was VERY well fed.
You could also make sure the chickens are in for the night and get a rat trap set out with peanut butter for bait, the rat traps are HUGE (can get them from a local hardware store) be careful with your fingers! Best of luck with your solution.
post #4 of 6

I'd put out the poison. We had a rat infestation several years ago, and that was the only way to do it. Make sure the poison is not accessible to the birds. In my case, they were living under the coop (it was on the ground so they had a good hiding place), so we put the poison under there, too. 

Chickens off and on for 25+ years and still learning.

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Chickens off and on for 25+ years and still learning.

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post #5 of 6

Diligence is the only way to get rid of them...and cleaning up the areas they like to congregate like old wood piles and brush.

 

I personally don't want to use the poison as I have too many pets/kids, etc. I've heard too many reports of the rats tracking the bait around where other animals can get it.

 

We just put out a lot of traps and maintained them vigilantly. Put the trap inside an inverted milk crate so the rats can get in but the birds can't get to the trap. (I've had a bird killed by a rat trap).

 

Then yes, take up food and water at night or place tight coverings over them.

 

I haven't invested in a treadle feeder as the ones I've seen would simply be used by the rats around here...I've seen mine climb up and use complicated bird feeders (one reason why I don't have bird feeders).

 

Good luck.

 

LofMc

Keeper of 15+ layers, common to specialty types for colorful egg baskets. Brooding Queens: The Queen Mum Silkie and 2 Bantam Cochin handmaids. Preparing to breed my own Olive Eggers! Barnevelder roo with Splash Marans and CL for egg color and color coding :D Former 4H leader, GDB Puppy Raiser, Homeschooler. Current ESL tutor. Proud new grandma. Loving wife to a very tolerant husband.
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Keeper of 15+ layers, common to specialty types for colorful egg baskets. Brooding Queens: The Queen Mum Silkie and 2 Bantam Cochin handmaids. Preparing to breed my own Olive Eggers! Barnevelder roo with Splash Marans and CL for egg color and color coding :D Former 4H leader, GDB Puppy Raiser, Homeschooler. Current ESL tutor. Proud new grandma. Loving wife to a very tolerant husband.
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post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for your suggestions. But I guess I have to use too many rat traps cos there is a large bushy area behind where we live. And the rats normaly come for food at night and return before dawn/sunrise. I can here there movement on the roof once its dark.
Some of the chickens sleep on the ground while others above on wooden bars I made in the coop for them to make a choice of where to sleep. I have 60 chickens now cos 2 of them died of coccidiosis. Temp 20-28 degrees on the range.
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BackYard Chickens › BYC Forum › Raising BackYard Chickens › Predators and Pests › so tired of this! Rats visit my coops every night.