Rats in stables :( how to get rid

Reacher

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I have a rat problem in my stables - timber stables, in one stable there is a rat hole chewed through the wall in each corner of stable by the party wall. Recently the rats have started piling heaps of scrabbled up horse poo in the corners by these holes!
I hate the thought of them scuttling around pi55ing on hay etc. We put out a cage trap with some peanut butter as bait but they are ignoring it. I covered the cage with bits of matting which I thought might make it look inviting to a rat but may that's not helping.

Any suggestions as to how to catch them? I've also heard of sonic repellers, but wonder if these would affect the horses.
 

Cheeky Chestnut

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Scrambled egg with poison in works well. If you don’t want to poison put scrambled egg in the traps. They can’t resist it normally, a fan blowing behind the trap casts the smell and the come running if they are bold enough.

or speak to your local ferret man
 

Reacher

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Ooh those are good ideas - thanks! Do they have any preferences as to how the scrambled eggs are prepared?!

Hmm a ferret man might be a good plan - I don't think the rats are limited to the stables unfortunately

Scrambled egg with poison in works well. If you don’t want to poison put scrambled egg in the traps. They can’t resist it normally, a fan blowing behind the trap casts the smell and the come running if they are bold enough.

or speak to your local ferret man
 

Cheeky Chestnut

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Ooh those are good ideas - thanks! Do they have any preferences as to how the scrambled eggs are prepared?!

Hmm a ferret man might be a good plan - I don't think the rats are limited to the stables unfortunately
no idea about preparation but I’ve never seen a rat refuse them 😅

Ferret guy will only come if there hasn’t been any poison laid first 👍🏼
 

paddy555

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I'm afraid I have only ever found one solution that worked. A trip to your local cat shelter and request the nastiest, most miserable cat they have. It doesn't have to like people. Not true feral you want to be able to feed it easily. Cage it for 2 weeks and then let it get on with the job. That is what I did when a rat landed on my back at 5.30 in the dark one morning. They let me have one which was destined to PTS as he couldn't be homed and had put one of the workers in A & E. We couldn't touch him whilst we were there. He was quite a large male.

He arrived boxed,, was transferred to his cage with the run of the hay loft boxed in. The rats took one look and started to pack up. When we let him out he did the thing he most enjoyed in life which was to kill any rats stupid enough to still be there. He was a total killing machine. We fed him very well to keep him big and strong and up to the largest rats. He was with us for 8 years and he lived for his job. Life without rats was wonderful. Then he died and we saw how effective he had been.
Before he came we had tried traps/poison which I continually worried about but little success. Kill one rat and the next one moves in.
 

Kamikaze

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Def get a cat/a couple of cats. A stray moved in to the yard and had 4 kittens. They were each trapped by cats protection, taken to be spayed and returned. You never see mice or rats anymore. Farmer feeds them and he can get closer to them but they generally run when they see anyone else.
 

ownedbyaconnie

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Cats and also make sure there is not a scrap of food left in sight.

When hay got low we moved all pallets and did a really good sweep. All prepared feeds go in to a bin with a lid, no carrots left out etc. All feed bags go straight into a bin etc.
 

Identityincrisis

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I have no advice different to the above with regards to getting rid of them, but i also had the same issue of them running along my stable back wall. I got some small holed chicken wire, bent it to shape the wall, used my rubber matting to help hold it in place, and they haven't been able to get through in the 6 months I've had it in place
 

Reacher

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Thanks everyone, Mr Reacher isn't a fan of cats but I will make the suggestion. We do get the occasional feral cat about the place though they don't seem to bother the rats.
 

Errin Paddywack

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We had a fantastic she cat for several years at the farm. Quite a little semi longhair. She was a brilliant rat catcher, used to bring them to show us before she ate them. While she was with us we rarely saw a rat but after she died they moved back in big time and we had to resort to poisoning which worked ok. None of our other cats would touch rats though one did kill a stoat once. We don't seem to have too much of a problem at the moment and I can only think it is because cats from the local houses are doing the job for us.
 

Reacher

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Thanks OBAC

We don't have any horse feed the rats can access, but unfortunately we do have bird feeders in the garden which is probably attracting the rats (though why do they eat horse poo if they are finding bird seed??) Yes we should sweep out under the pallets too

Cats and also make sure there is not a scrap of food left in sight.

When hay got low we moved all pallets and did a really good sweep. All prepared feeds go in to a bin with a lid, no carrots left out etc. All feed bags go straight into a bin etc.
 
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splashgirl45

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i kept my horses beside a river many years ago and we were overrun with rats. we got 4 feral cats from a cat protection group all neutered 2 males and 2 females. the females worked very hard and kept the rats down, the boys got quite tame and thought they were there for decorative purposes!!... there is an organisation called S.N.I.P. who advertise in H & H who supply cats and a cage so you dont have to buy anything else..good luck
 

Reacher

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I have no advice different to the above with regards to getting rid of them, but i also had the same issue of them running along my stable back wall. I got some small holed chicken wire, bent it to shape the wall, used my rubber matting to help hold it in place, and they haven't been able to get through in the 6 months I've had it in place
That's a good idea thanks, I'll try blocking the holes up.

I've put a post on the local FB page asking for a terrier / ferret man!
 

Reacher

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we found that although the rats had lots of places to hide, the cats got the juveniles and eventually wiped the lot out....we just had to make sure all of our feed was in metal bins and kept everything spotless so there were not bits of feed laying around. ..
I wish the feral cats from the nearby farm would pull their weight.

Horse feed is in tins in the house but seed from bird feeders dropped on ground is a problem
 

splashgirl45

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i live at the back of a stables and we have a continual rat problem and we did get contractors in as my neighbour counted 15 on his lawn a while ago . the contractor left us bait boxes and my neighbour keeps them in his garden as the rest of us have dogs and he doesnt. he loves feeding the birds and has special bird feeders that have something under them to catch the seeds. i tend to just feed peanuts and have just bought a holder for bird peanut butter so i avoid any seeds landing on the floor..it is a continual problem but the rat chap said we should stop feeding the birds but everyone wants to carry on...
 

Reacher

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i live at the back of a stables and we have a continual rat problem and we did get contractors in as my neighbour counted 15 on his lawn a while ago . the contractor left us bait boxes and my neighbour keeps them in his garden as the rest of us have dogs and he doesnt. he loves feeding the birds and has special bird feeders that have something under them to catch the seeds. i tend to just feed peanuts and have just bought a holder for bird peanut butter so i avoid any seeds landing on the floor..it is a continual problem but the rat chap said we should stop feeding the birds but everyone wants to carry on...
15!!:eek:
I was wondering if there was any way to catch the bird feed - I will have a look for special bird feeder -thanks
 

twiggy2

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You might struggle to find so.ekne who will work ferrets in there, they should only be worked somewhere they can be dug out if they don't come out. Personally I have never put a ferret against a rat anyway ferrets can end up with terrible injuries as its not an easy kill for them.
I would bait up and block the holes personlly
 

oldie48

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Definitely block up any holes into the stables and I hope your terrier man does a good job. Stanley, our BT is enthusiastic but totally useless, the rats make him bark and run around a good deal but if they come close, he's terrified!
 

Smitty

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I dont expect you are anywhere near me. My terrier loves a rat hunt. I no longer have any in my garden as have revised my composting methods😡 , along with terrier doing his stuff, but he managed to kill one in a flowerbed opposite Asda a few weeks ago whilst on a lead as we were passing 😳 . Oh the shame ...
 

paddy555

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r..it is a continual problem but the rat chap said we should stop feeding the birds but everyone wants to carry on...
we use to feed the birds in the front garden so we could watch them and the squirrels but it ended up with OH sitting in the porch and shooting the rats. It caused a real problem so we just had to stop bird feeding. Since we stopped not a single rat in that area.

I have also found pallets for stacking hay on cause a problem. Underground motorway for rats. I now stack hay on the ground on a spread straw matting base and leave around 9 inches between the stack and the walls. This then becomes a motorway for feral cats. If they cannot get around the stack they have little hope of catching rats.
 
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