are rats a problem?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Tastes_Like_Chicken, Sep 6, 2007.

  1. Tastes_Like_Chicken

    Tastes_Like_Chicken In the Brooder

    Sep 2, 2007
    East Fishkill, NY
    i read something that said the food attracts rats and now my mom is hesitant to permit us to get chickens... are they really a problem?
  2. MarkR

    MarkR Songster

    Mar 11, 2007
    Ivy, Virginia
    If you keep the chicken food in metal bins with tight covers they shouldn't be a problem.

  3. arlee453

    arlee453 Songster

    Aug 13, 2007
    near Charlotte NC
    I'd add to also make sure you keep any feed spilled by the chickens cleaned up.

    If you can keep the feed stored away from the chickens somewhat that may help too - like keep the feed bags in metal garbage cans in the garage, etc.

  4. Tastes_Like_Chicken

    Tastes_Like_Chicken In the Brooder

    Sep 2, 2007
    East Fishkill, NY
    well i've never even seen rats around my house and my mom says that if we ever did we'd move lol. so i just have to make sure they wont be attracted to the chickens.... or my mom wont let me get em [​IMG]
  5. eggzettera

    eggzettera Songster

    I read on a gardening forum that they do not like the smell of peppermint. I would plant peppermint around the coop for spring through fall protection and use peppermint oil in the winter. I think this would help with prevention, just like keep the area clean will.
  6. Adoxieandadingo

    Adoxieandadingo Hatching

    Sep 9, 2007
    We keep our food in those plastic bins where the lids seal tight. We did have one rat in the yard who would grab some food and run away. Being we have 9 pet rats in cages in the house, we didnt freak out. We also have dogs and a cat so not many small rodents survive in my yard.
    When my neighbors had chickens, we DID have a rat problem but they werent big ole city rats, they looked like gerbils on More than anything, rats can be destructive. They will eat ANYTHING. Again, I have them as pets so I know. They also are EXTREMELY intelligent. Ive used glue traps for mice and rat poison years ago for rats. The only thing about the poison is you better know where that rat is otherwise it will stink after it dies.
  7. We're in the suburbs and have lived in our house for 7 years. We knew about the mice, but never encountered rats... until now. We caught/killed 2 in a matter of 24 hours after our crazy neighbor swore she saw one in the midday sun running from our coop to our garage.

    Come to find out, there was one in a garage up the block and our other neighbor caught on in his garage last year (pre-chickens--thank goodness!). Crazy neighbor says that her cats killed one about 2 years ago (also pre-chickens). We live close enough to a small brook... so it didn't completely surprise me.

    So the thing is, you may HAVE them and just not notice them until you have chickens.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: