Several of my colleagues have blogged about rats. We had a mice problem, not a rat, thankfully, but I was reading an article about rat infestations today and it made me cringe. You think immigration is bad. What about the rat population?
The article stated that the rat problem is worsening in England due to many factors, such as, population growth, litter, bird feeding, compost heaps, poison resistance and mild winters. There was a rat infestation in North Yorkshire, but they say it is now under control. Pest control argued that we need stronger poison. The rats have become resistant to the current sublethal dose of anticoagulants used as poison in those grain baits. We have created “super-rat”, like those “super-bugs” that are resistant to antibiotics.
I was not aware that rats can produce every 6 weeks, with a litter of 6-8 babies. Yuck!! We had hamsters and that was bad enough. I don’t even want to imagine rats. Not only are rats a pain in the butt, but they do carry and spread disease, which is the worst part.
Several people commented, with a few in defense of rats. Uugh! Anyhow, one person commented that she tried a method recommended by PETA that kept rats away. It was a mixture of cayenne pepper, horseradish, garlic and salad oil. You let it steep, then spray it around bins, etc. It may work to keep rats away, but that only makes your problem someone else’s problem, as another pointed out. In order to control the rat infestation, you need to kill them. I agree with this. Some people might be squeamish to use baits. I’m sorry if I offend any animal rights activists, but I say kill them in whatever way that works. These are pests, not household pets.