In the Brooder
7 Years
Jun 3, 2012
we have had 2 or 3 rats running around in our garden for a couple of weeks.

we have put down rat traps, but no use., so over last couple of days have been putting down rat poison

today, i notice that the rats have been in the chicken run.

obviously, we have to make run more secure, but anything i need to worry about with rats being treated with rat poison running around near my chooks?
Depends on the type of rat poison and whether the chickens eat the rats. Bromadiolone is relatively safe and warfarin is not. An animal that eats a rat who died of warfarin poisoning can die of the residual warfarin in the body. I keep Just One Bite, a brand of bromadiolone, in my coop but out of the reach of the chickens.

Is it common for rats to just start showing up to your coop? I'm in the suburbs and have never seen a rat out here...mice galore but no rats...if I keep my food contained should they not be drawn in ?
well i am in town, but we have garden allotments just over the fence from us, so chances are they are there

but also our bin emptying service has been cut back to once every 2 weeks, so am wondering if there is more food around for the rats to help themselves to

have made the run as secure as i can, and made double certain that rats cant get access to chooks food, and with the rat poison we put down hoping that we can irradicate the problem
I just read that mice won't come near peppermint. Anyone else heard of this? I assume it will work with rats too? I'm going to crush up peppermints or perhaps get peppermint oil and put around the chicken feed, etc. ????
The problem with traping rats is they are very nuphobic. meaning they are very leary of any thing new in there surundings. The best way to trap them is to put out lots of bait (i prefer peperoni or beacon) and not set the traps for a couple days. After they s
as long as the rat has ditart eating the bait than set the traps and you will catch them. as far as secondary poisining as long as the rat has digested all the bait it wont be a problem. it will however be a problem if there is undigested poision in the rat and the chicken consumes that. Warfarin is not a very effictive bait for rats. they have been resistant to that for a long time now. Bromodilone is a fairly safe bait that will work but you would be suprised how much it takes to kill a rat. and rember it does take a couple days for it to work and a rat will continue to eat even after it has got a lethal dose of bromodilone. Here in canada the more toxic "stop feed" baits are not availible to the public. You need a license. IMO traping is the best method.
Mix grated hardcheese with gypsum powder and salt, put it in a place where the birds cant find it. Give plenty of water nearby. What happens is that when the rat eats this bait, it will become thirsty and will drink a lot. Water and gypsum powder reacts inside the rat's belly, creating ileus, colic spasms and the rat dies. Rather horrible but it works well.
I just read that mice won't come near peppermint. Anyone else heard of this? I assume it will work with rats too? I'm going to crush up peppermints or perhaps get peppermint oil and put around the chicken feed, etc. ????

Most plants in the mint family including but not limited to catnip will deter rodents somewhat. I always plant catnip in my garden to help keep rabbits away, and so far have never had any rabbits eating out of my garden...might be the catnip, might be my dog peeing on everything that sticks out of the ground.
This is my post from the duck thread. It occurred to me it's better suited to this thread.

I'm reporting in the milk crate worked perfectly. It lets the rats through, but not my chickens. I discovered a good bait for the Victor traps (especially since the rats like my chicken's layer pellets) is a dough ball of cheese with 3-5 individual pellets firmly embedded into the ball like a pin cushion. The pests have to work hard to get the pellets which releases the mechanism.

Also, I read an article from UC Davis Integrated Pest Management website, which explained their biology and best eradication methods. As far as I can tell, I'll need to change the way I feed my girls. I had the typical galvanized tin hanging feeder. It caused too much spillage by my messy girls and couldn't be properly secured to prevent the rats from easily getting into it. Rats can jump very high. If I put it high enough to exclude the rats, then my girls couldn't get to it either. So, I believe my only solution is to put their food out in the day and remove it at night. And, put it into a container with higher sides, so my girls won't fling it everywhere.

Rat tally thus far = 10

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