Dealing with rats


In the Brooder
Jul 6, 2018
I live in the city and our neighbors have a bad rat problem, which means I have a rat problem. My snap traps have had limited success, the rat zapper always got triggered by bugs so the rats made off with the bait, and the poison i got for the rats in my shed has gotten no bites. I saw a ratinator recommended and thought "why not" but then i realized drowning them is going to be challenging for me because i have a guilty conscience about how long it actually takes for them to die. What else could I do with live trapped rats to take care of my problem? If I have to ill drown them but just hoping someone else has a suggestion i havent thought of.

Folly's place

11 Years
Sep 13, 2011
southern Michigan
Limiting feeding opportunities for rodents in first; no food of any sort left outside, ever.
Rats are very smart, and will avoid traps after one capture, so trapping won't ever eliminate a colony.
Poison bait, set out safely to prevent non-target critters from getting to it, will work. The bait type needs to be changed every week or three too.
Traps depending on drowning won't get more than a few anyway.
I've never had one in a live trap, but if I did, my 22g would work fine.
If your neighbors are feeding those wild rats, something could be done about that. Have you talked to them about it? How about your public health department, or animal control? Wild rats are a menace and need to be reduced in numbers, at least.


Crossing the Road
9 Years
Jun 23, 2013
The Big Island/Hawaii
I have 4BO, don't leave feed out but I have neighbors that have dogs that are kept outside. The wild birds take the dog's food & drop them around (I've found them in my yard) plus the neighbors don't pick up uneaten food at night.

I too refuse to deal with the live traps, what to do with them when you catch them? I won't use the sticky ones, had a bird get stuck in one & it was horrible.

The spring loaded snap traps are the best, you just need to find the right bait. What are you using for bait? Here the rats/mice LOVE papaya, I wrap a piece in a stocking & tie it to the bait attachment. Works every time. Keep experimenting with different baits ...

Many are against using poison due to wild life that prey on the rodents. I've used them but then the critter would take them. I know it was rats/mice cause I sprinkle DE around & find footprints. So I tie it down & attach to something, now I've noticed there's a hole through the center of the block, so I thread a string with a knot at the end ... Works great.
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Howard E

5 Years
Feb 18, 2016
If you are able to live trap rats with any success, the way the reptile folks kill em prior to feeding time is with baking soda and vinegar........which creates CO2 gas to put them to sleep. Tons of videos and for "euthanize rats with CO2".

Experience has proven, however, that trapping alone will barely dent the population in a colony of rats. They can reproduce faster than you can trap em. That would mean all kinds of traps......snap traps, live traps, etc.

In the end, taking out a colony or rats is nearly always a case of eliminating harborage (places for them to live), and access to food and water, the food is then replaced with poison bait blocks served up from secure, lockable bait stations. When that is all they have to eat, they go for it.

But even if you get busy and do your part, yet your neighbor doesn't help may be in for a long hard slog of it.....and ultimately failing in the process. Does your city have a public health department that will help you help them?


May 1, 2018
Southeast Texas
Hats gonna be hard with poison. What ever kills them will kill what ever eats the rats next. Snap traps with peanut butter, spring nooses work great and you have the potential to catch more than one per trap, but as everyone said don’t leave food out over night. Make sure it’s put up. Make sure eggs are picked up every evening. Other than that try scouring YouTube. There are a couple of folks who create YouTube channels dedicated to catching/killing/trapping mice.


Hilltop Farm
Premium Feather Member
14 Years
Nov 18, 2007
My Coop
My Coop
I have used this with great success and other critters can't get to the rat bait.
RatBait.jpg RatBaitStation.jpg


Jul 25, 2018
Windsor, NY

This is a novel idea, not ideally suited to large outbreaks but something I'd like to try one day, and would be perfect for someone who doesn't want to leave poison out.

We had to try a few different brands of bait before we found one they go crazy for.
That's a novel idea - using a rat as "bait" or rather - a lure. It does make sense but I would have to have my niece take care of it for me... she likes pet rats... YUCK! But I found it hard to imagine that it stayed in that wooden box for long. ;)


Crossing the Road
7 Years
Sep 29, 2014
New Zealand
That's a novel idea - using a rat as "bait" or rather - a lure. It does make sense but I would have to have my niece take care of it for me... she likes pet rats... YUCK! But I found it hard to imagine that it stayed in that wooden box for long. ;)

Yes, seeing as how I've had rats chew through really thick pieces of wood to get to my poor quail I do think that box would've needed some steel reinforcement (or at least some hardware cloth) to keep its occupant inside.

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