Norway RATS!!!


11 Years
Apr 3, 2008
Ok so it got to be 30 degrees here the other day..and I thought well I'll shut off the heat lamp as it was getting kind of humid in the coop. So...that night I go out to check on everyone at the end of the day and I turn the red light on so it doesn't blind anyone as it was dark...and then I almost had a stroke!!

Our feeder was plum full of norway rats!!! I went in the coop and I bet there was between 10 to 15 rats in there. I have NEVER seen anything like it. We set rat traps all around and filled the hole that we found they possibly were getting thru.

I went back out in the morning and its obvious they weren't back in there because there was food left in the feeder...if they'd been back it would have been empty. And we haven't seen them since.

What in the world can we do to keep them out?? What about bugs the rats have on them...I dont want the chickens to catch anything from them! I went out the following day and cleaned the entire coop from top to bottom. I need to figure out what you all are using for disinfecting tho!

Would love any advice for those of you that shop at Fleet Farm as to what we could use for a disinfectant? That is safe?

Thank you!!!

Jen in MN
Yikes, can't help you with the rat situation, but I use (and highly recommend) Oxine solution for disinfecting. I've also heard very good things about Vanodine, but have not personally used it. GOOD LUCK!
Someone suggested a .22 to me ...and big traps, of course. I am still researching, so I'll share whatever I find ...and hopefully, some of the other BYC'ers will have some input that's more useful.

I don't know if mine is a Norway or what, but the hole it comes and goes is a good 3" diameter!! I'm getting some big traps and nasty Spam, today maybe he'll stop stealing my eggs! (I caught him red-pawed once already.)
wooden victor rat traps baited with penut butter!

Also clear brush or piles of wood ect away from the coop sides if there are any. The problem with blocking their hole is they will just chew one somwhere else now to get back to the food.
These rats are not stupid and we found the traps only work for a while. We had to move up to shooting them too. It has been the best method yet. One method that works if you can tip toe real well is to close the door when you know they are in there. We would close them in after dark when they would go to feed, then we would put a bucket up to the chickens door, open the door and they would run right into the bucket. You gotta be fast with the cover.......but we eliminated alot like that
you need to throw out or (leave outside in the weather for weeks) wooden traps after a catch or 2 of the death scent on them makes them almost completely uneffective. We usually just throw them out because their cost is figured into a job from the get go.

A decent pellet rifle works well also but itsnt for the weak hearted. somtimes if you wound one and it runs into the hole u will hear it screaming as the others tear it apart.

U can also try the water bucket trap method but its gotta be tall enough so they cant jump out. You only need enough water so they cant stand on their hind legs and breath.
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Knock on wood, but I have not had a rat problem in years.
But I use the rat poison that comes in "brick" form. You break off pieces and drop it down their hole. The last time I had rats, and in my opinion not a more disgusting creature living, this just eliminated them and have not had a problem since.

A Jack Russell Terrier is very effective as well.
My son and DH have open season on rats with paintball guns. My shed is a lovely shade of bright green and purple. We also use big plastic traps by Vector I think. They are real easy to set, not like the wooden ones. Also use the block poison.
The ones I have in the city are sewer rats (maybe they are related to the Norway) and shoving poison down in their holes are effective however have to keep up with the baits because one is down two more will come up. Looked liek they brought in reforcements!

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