NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: Rats  (Read 6904 times)

jan

  • Joined Oct 2007
Rats
« on: December 01, 2007, 06:14:11 pm »
Can anyone tell me how chickens and rats get on??  The girls were craning their necks the other day inside the run and when I looked out of the upstairs window there was a brown rat quite happily helping itself to bits off the floor.  It has been back a few times now but neither seem to be bothered by each other, in fact the other day when the rat was running back over the railway line one of the girls chased it, but I think this was down to the fact that she thought the tail going out through the fencing was a juicy worm!!
Voss Electric Fence

pigsatlesrues

  • Joined Oct 2008
  • Normandy, France
Re: Rats
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2007, 09:19:22 pm »
I think you will always find rats and mice where there are animals and birds. They don't seem to have a problem co-habiting or sharing food, but I believe that the risk of disease from the vermin is high especially with birds/poultry because of their droppings. The rats are also partial to eggs which isn't good either.

We find our hens are only interested in dead mice/rats after the cats have been hunting. It seems to be a free for all and the victor usually runs off as fast as it can to enjoy the feast!

Kate
Bonjour et avoir un bon jour !

carole

  • Joined Oct 2007
Re: Rats
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2007, 03:29:40 pm »
Have had in the past real problems with rats eating chicken and goose eggs, found the nest under the actual coop itself where they knew all the delicious food would be for them. The dog sat on guard and we secured all the underneath, decided not to use bait as had been suggested many times due to the worry of the cats etc.
Fingers crossed the problem has not occured since.
Good luck
Carole

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: Rats
« Reply #3 on: December 13, 2007, 08:16:38 pm »
There are rats round about here, not unexpectedly - but that's why we have Cassius. When he goes to Cat Heaven, I think we'll get a Jack Russell terrier.

stephen

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Kent
Re: Rats
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2007, 09:19:59 am »
The other half and i spent most of yesterday in the garden, making repairs to the avey roof, putting roofing on the cat runs, picking up presents from the dogs! etc i moved part of a deflated pool inside the half finnished summer house and to my horror about 8 mice ran in different directions from underneath! the buggers had eated through the bottom of the chickens food bag and set up home! i was more annoyed that i had been stupid enough not to think about mice and rats when i left the food there just the convience! as we breed cats we have alot of neuters running around of various breeds, however the british shorthairs were more intrested in chasing there tails, rolling around or falling asleap, the persians were more intrested in either being picked up for cuddles or sitting stairing aimlessley into space! (do love them tho lol) the scottish wildcats seemed intrested but they live in a secure enclosure and the mice arnt stupid enough to go in there! the bengals and orientals we have are all active girls (and very expensive) so stay inside or in a run in the garden for some fresh air and will do until spayed. The only two non-pedigree cats that live in the house that would have done the job with ease had completley dissapeared into the neighbourhood for the night! so i think a good old mouse trap is called for as the cats are utterley useless as mouse hunters! the chickens dont seem to care tho, they had great fun running up to me and then away again while i was cleaning out there home and diddnt care about the mice, dogs or the cats all being there!

jan

  • Joined Oct 2007
Re: Rats
« Reply #5 on: December 17, 2007, 02:08:06 pm »
Well our little friend seemed to have a good thought and decided that he would bring some buddies in as well....we had loads of advice from using a humane catcher (but where do you let them go, and they apparently come back!), to putting down poison (but also have a cat and other cats around!), to shooting them (thus they defo wont come back and it scares of the others!), to letting in one of my Jack Russells (I have three)...cant bare to see anything suffer so said no to the poison, apparently when you get them in the humane catcher you drown them sorry but defo no (couldnt bare to watch them struggle), the dogs would literally tear them apart so another no, so got someone we know who is a top shot (but only on the instruction that 1hit = 1dead rat, no wounding!!).  There was one rat about 6-7inches in body length and then same tail length (who is now deceased, very quick and accurate) but the other is quite elusive and HUGE.  About 7-8 inches in length and massive, in fact looks the size of my minature JRT (no joke!).  But boy can it move, so looks like stake out tonight again.  You are right by the way the chickens dont seem to care, and the rats dont seem to mind them either.  But the rats are actually standing on hind legs with front legs holding the chicken feeder and nose inside eating away, and we thought the chickens were getting really hungry!!  Anyway will let you know how it goes.  Many thanks for the replies Janx  ;D

 

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