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Gardening

Rats

(43 Posts)
rafichagran Sat 25-Jan-20 14:58:44

Please can anyone give advice,
My neighbours have just built decking and I notice now some burrowing under my new 6ft wood fence. I have blocked these up and then more holes appear.
My partner was in the garden and saw a rat, something we have never had before. Do rats go to decking for warmth?
How can we get rid of this problem we have never had them before or the burrowing. If any poster has decking or just some idea what I could do I would be grateful. Is there any products I can buy that you found helps. This is my first post in the gardening section, normally I just read but alot of you seem to have alot of knowledge.

GagaJo Sat 25-Jan-20 15:07:44

Hmm. A property I own was having problems with rats attracted by a neighbour's rubbish.

I expected the neighbour to resolve the issue, which they did, but IF they hadn't I was going to environmental health. I had photographs and videos of the problem as evidence.

Iwastoldtheredbecake Sat 25-Jan-20 15:17:05

I’m not sure if the decking is the main problem, our neighbours feed the birds and rats come to feed from their garden.
We had field mice nesting under our decking until we removed it, we also had rats in our compost bins.
I think your only solution is to buy the small green boxes with rat poison placed in them, but it could get costly as the rats will probably keep coming, especially during the Winter months.
I think the days of the local authority ‘Rat man’ coming out, free of charge, are long gone. Unless your neighbour is hoarding rubbish, I think it’s something that you will have to deal with yourself.
Rats are a common problem nowadays I’m afraid.
We live in the countryside and have a constant battle with rats, mice, rabbits and a young deer that sleeps at the bottom of the garden and sets the dog off!

Iwastoldtheredbecake Sat 25-Jan-20 15:19:58

Just a thought, maybe your new fence is just highlighting a problem with rats that’s always been there, but unnoticed, as they are now having to burrow to get through to your garden?

rafichagran Sat 25-Jan-20 15:24:10

Maybe, I am open to all suggestions. Thanks very much, I now have to think about how to tackle the problem.

MissAdventure Sat 25-Jan-20 15:29:57

I have heard that decking attracts rats, but I would think there must also be a food source close.

Feeding the birds is apparently one of the main sources of rat problems.

Sara65 Sat 25-Jan-20 15:33:55

I’d never have a house with decking for that very reason, I’ve also very reluctantly stopped feeding the birds.
I saw a rather large rat not far from the back door, and I am really paranoid now, I know they’re around, but I don’t want to see them.

cavewoman Sat 25-Jan-20 15:39:52

MawB may be able to advise grin

FlexibleFriend Sat 25-Jan-20 15:55:59

I have a lot of decking in my garden but don't feed the birds and have no problem with rats. They will be attracted by a food source or where they can move around without being seen. Both peppermint oil and hot chilli powder are known deterrents.

Hetty58 Sat 25-Jan-20 16:03:15

Poison is dangerous for wildlife and pets. Next door have decking so we have wire mesh (the welded squares type) behind our fence to prevent problems.

We live near a river and rats like to stay near a water source. If you have a bird bath, use the type on a post.

rafichagran Sat 25-Jan-20 16:09:03

Hetty that was my worry with poison. Peppermint oil and Chile powder seem a good idea though.

MiniMoon Sat 25-Jan-20 17:08:00

We live up the hill from a river, and until this winter we have not seen rats. Two have started visiting our garden, eating the bird seed from the bird table. My DH says he will get some rat poison to put down, but there must be a better way to deter them. I don't want the birds and other wildlife to be poisoned along with the rats.
I once read an article which stated that wherever you live you are never more than 12 feet away from a rat!

M0nica Sat 25-Jan-20 17:15:03

I think most local councils are responsible for pest control when the pest is a rat.

Whenever they have appeared in our garden, we just ring the council and a man turns up with all the poison and deals with them.

lemongrove Sat 25-Jan-20 17:28:09

We used to have decking ( another house) it never attracted rats.
However, no decking here, but odd sightings of a rat/rats.We feed the birds ( a lot) but never put food on the ground.There just are more rats around than we think, both in towns and countryside.
I agree with the poster who highlighted the new fencing, thus
The rats now need to burrow under, the old fencing likely had a few handy gaps.
All you can do OP, is not to feed birds, but rats come and go in all gardens.

Iam64 Sat 25-Jan-20 18:24:40

Get a rat expert in, its the quickest, and most effective way to get rid of the blighters. You'll need neighbours to support this so the rats get attacked on all fronts

Calendargirl Sat 25-Jan-20 18:29:09

Do you have to pay for pest control from the council MOnica? You certainly are charged in our area.

Iwastoldtheredbecake Sat 25-Jan-20 18:32:29

Just checked our local council website under pest control, they no longer deal with any pest control issues. Cost savings I guess.

FlexibleFriend Sat 25-Jan-20 19:02:03

My local council doesn't deal with pest control unless you're a council tenant.

Hetty58 Sat 25-Jan-20 19:13:03

I can't see the point of pest control (unless they're indoors). Poisoned rats can be eaten by wildlife and pets. The poison itself may be taken by other animals. We have owls, weasels and badgers here.

Even if you eliminate them, others will soon move into the vacant territory.

It's more effective to block their access to water (if possible), reduce the chance of bird food being on the ground (especially overnight) and have anti-climb devices on pole feeders - we have them anyway to stop squirrels.

Callistemon Sat 25-Jan-20 19:21:53

I have heard that they do, that under the decking is a favourite place for rats.
We have hanging seed containers for the birds and I was horrified to see a rat hanging off one last year,chewing through for the seed.
Unfortunately the LA don't send out rodent inspectors now,(ours doesn't) and we found one who came and set traps. When he came back he was certain that he had sorted the problem but warned that they may come back as a garden behind us is in a complete mess and the tunnel led through to there.

He advised us to take down the bird feeders.

Callistemon Sat 25-Jan-20 19:28:54

I should just add that the rodent inspector said the stuff you can buy in the garden centre is not strong enough; the kind he uses has to have a licence.
But perhaps he would say that.

rafichagran Sat 25-Jan-20 22:34:43

Thankyou everyone. I have had alot of help with this.

Callistemon Sun 26-Jan-20 10:39:39

I should also add that he charged a lot for doing a little.
We mentioned it to the neighbour but no offer of a contribution was forthcoming.

Urmstongran Sun 26-Jan-20 11:25:05

Very quick witted cavewoman!
🤣

Farmor15 Sun 26-Jan-20 11:32:38

Get a cat! Not joking- we live in a rural area and have always had a cat, specially to deal with rats and mice. We occasionally find a dead rat, but have never seen live one. I think the smell of cats can deter rats. Despite lots of rabbits in area, they don’t bother our garden - I think the cats keep them away.