Sewer rats!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by EweSheep, Aug 5, 2008.

  1. EweSheep

    EweSheep Flock Mistress

    Jan 12, 2007
    Land of Lincoln
    Dang those things are persistent!

    They already gnawed five holes on the bottom of my coop which it is setting on patio blocks with wooden floor laid down rubber mats on top.

    We have tried death baits and got three of them, but the rest of them just by pass those baits and getting into the coop. They dont bother the eggs or the birds. Sometimes they would drag away a chick or two and the feeder are hung up on the wall about a foot.

    Anything I can keep them accessing into the coop via thru floor? I thought about replacing the floor again and line it with hardware wire and wrap it all around the bottom and sides and a little extra lip on the top.

    My shed is a Royal Outdoor shed, the vinyl ones.
  2. lengel

    lengel Songster

    Apr 30, 2008
    I don't know what to say only because I feel slightly ill. Sewer rats??? How big do they get?

    BTW, I have a very skilled owl on my property that might help with your problem.
  3. The Chicken Lady

    The Chicken Lady Moderator Staff Member 10 Years

    Apr 21, 2008
    West Michigan
    Rats are not only persistent, but they can be pretty dang smart, too. You may need a live rat trap and a gun for exterminating whatever you catch.

    I like your idea of using hardware cloth to cover the floor and part of the walls, too.

    To discourage them, you may want to feed the chickens like you feed your dog. Have distinct feeding times, and only offer enough food for the chickens to eat at those times. In other words, don't leave food lying around uneaten whenever possible.
  4. deb1

    deb1 Songster

    Jun 26, 2008
    We had trouble with rats in our last coop. Our coop was an old shed that set on concrete but the flooring was wood. There was agap between the floor and the concrete. That is where the rats lived. They avoided the poison that we left too.

    The real harm they did was when we had chicks. I wanted the hens to be able to raise their own chicks. But the rats kept stealing them! My two daughters were devastated.

    My husband says that now he should have torn out the wood flooring. I think that we could have gotten rid of the rats if we hadn't had that gap for them to hide in.

    I could put something on the concrete to make it less unpleasant for the birds. If it had been dirt I could have buried some hardware cloth. But there is nothing I could do for that gap except poison.

    One rat did take poison but he came out as he was dying and tried to drink the birds water. I am not exaggerating when I say that he was the size of a small cat!
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2008
  5. KellyGwen

    KellyGwen Songster

    Apr 28, 2008
    Lake Luzerne, NY
    Those things are MASSIVE!! I remember a friend of mine in Upstate NY actually HUNTING them at his farm... they are WAY too big for normal rat traps... I couldn't believe how big they were!

    Rats are smart animals and can figure out how to get where they want to go pretty quickly, especially if there's food! Cement & metal... wood and plastic are not gonna do it [​IMG]

    BTW.. anyone ever see Princess Bride? "ROUS's"?? [​IMG]
    Don't try this at home!!!
  6. dixygirl

    dixygirl Songster

    May 14, 2008
    This is what I would do. If there is no electricity in the shed i would take run an exterior grade extension cord outside to the shed and plug in an electronic pest repeller
    They sell different brands at home depot for about $20. They work

    PS You would want a heavy duty orange extension cord rated exterior. I cover it with mulch or bury it in a trench as opposed to leaving it exposed on the ground. That's just what i would do. I did this in a shed where i found a mouse's nest and sprinkled DE and rat poison and it is pest free. End of problem.
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2008
  7. Jenski

    Jenski Songster

    Jun 17, 2008
    Middle Tennessee
    I like the hardware wire idea. Rats are nasty buggers. It is important to remove all food sources and make any available shelter a most unpleasant place for rats to be.

    How about adding an extremely large cat, or even a small and determined terrier to the mix? (of course, you would have to keep them away from the chickens)

    Good luck!

    Jen in TN
  8. Psittizen Shikkin

    Psittizen Shikkin Songster

    Jun 14, 2008
    Oroville, California
    Quote:I've tried using these stupid things and they do not work. We plugged them into an extension cord and ran it up into the attic as we were getting a lot of rats in the house. When the electrician went up there when we were having some can lights put in the kitchen, he could see where the rats sat next to the "repeller" and chewed on the cord.
    The only thing that ended up working for us was to use several methods over the course of a few months. We had them get into our hot tub wiring and chew through some of the wiring and one of the water lines. They learn quickly and will actually kick dirt onto the sticky traps so those never work for more than a few days. The quick bite worked the best. We find it at wally. It took several treatments but we finally got them all. Of course now it's mice but they're much less destructive and between the snakes and the poison and a BB gun, they're pretty scarce too. Good luck in becoming free from the pests.

    edited to add that hardware cloth was what the hot tub repairman called "the vermin stop system" he installed on the tub. [​IMG]
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2008
  9. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member 11 Years

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    Hi, hardware cloth covering the floor is great. If you can make your coop rat proof, then put bait out, it would probably work better.
    I took a rubbermaid storage container, made a 2-3 inch hole on each side, like in lower corner, drilled a few little holes about half way up. Put a piece of wire thru tied from little hole to little hole, and hung bait on there, the kind that has a hole in the middle. Put it where you think they run, and don't touch it for a few weeks. I like it cause the chickens can't get in, I have a piece of wood holding it down. It disappeared a few times, then stopped.
  10. I'd clean out all bedding, put 1/2" hardware cloth securely over it paying special attention to the edges, then re-floor on top with plywood or OSB.

    Can't stand rats, or the diseases they bring...[​IMG]

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