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  • If rats are in your house, eliminate them using a rat poison placed inside a bait box or alternatively a rat trap.
  • Lay small amounts of bait, about 10m apart, along the run the rats are using, being sure to replace it if eaten or spoiled
  • Make sure you deprive them of any alternative food sources, and water through leaking pipes.
  • For loft spaces, inaccessible areas, pre-packed sachets of grain are ideal.
  • The whole colony should be eliminated within 10-14 days
  • Rats are very wary of new foods and new objects.
  • Remove all rubbish from around the house, sheds, garage etc
  • Keep any vegetation around the building short and tidy. They are very good climbers and can easily scale a brick wall.

  • Brown Rat

  • Greyish-brown fur
  • Small, hairy ears 
  • Blunt nose
  • Long, scaly, hairless tail, shorter than body length.
  • Much larger than any mice, but similar and often confused with the much     darker, shorter-tailed water vole.
  • Droppings are brown and wide, spindle shaped with rounded ends
  • Black Rat

  • Black fur with lighter bell
  • Slender body, about 10-25cm long
  • Large, thin ears
  • Pointed nose
  • Tail longer than body length 
  • Droppings are long and thin, banana shaped with pointed ends

  • Lifecycle 

  • Rats live for up to three years
  • In mild conditions, or if living indoors, they can breed all year round
  • Gestation lasts about 21 days and the litter size is usually 7-9
  • Young are weaned after three weeks and reach sexual maturity at about 8 to 12 weeks
  • A female rat may have 4 or 5 litters a year 
    • Habitat

    • Rats usually live outside or under buildings within burrows, but are occasionally found in houses and lofts.
    • When in domestic houses, they are most commonly heard moving about in the loft or cavity walls.
    • A common sign is a dirty smear mark where they cross over solid objects
    • There may be signs of them in the kitchen and particularly under the kitchen sink where pipes may enter the building.
    • Look out for gnaw marks on timber, cables and water pipes
    • When in the garden they are most commonly seen feeding beneath the bird table or in the vicinity of poultry.
    • They may be living under a garden shed, in the compost heap or in a local ditch or drain.
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