RATS

Asked September 12, 2018, 3:05 PM EDT

i LIVE ON SMALL TINY ISLAND IN COLTONS POINT, THE POTOMAC SURRONDS US. WE HAVE HAD COUNTRY MICE, BUT NEVER RATS. i CAUGHT ONE LAST WEEK AFTER MONTHS OF TRYING. i TOOK IT UP THE ROAD TO THE WOODS AND WAS SO RELIEVED. THREE DAYS LATER ANOTHER LARGER ONE WAS IN THE KITCHEN. i WANT TO KNOW HOW THEY GOT HERE AND WHAT TO DO HUMANELY TO GET RID OF THEM. i WILL SET THAT TRAP AGAIN, BUT IF THERE ARE TWO........ THERE COULD BE HUNDREDS. tHANK YOU AND i HOPE YOU WILL ANSWER THIS SOON. LESLIE

St. Mary's County Maryland pest control rats pest - other

3 Responses

Rats are able to swim, so that is one way they can move from one place to another. The following page from the Montgomery County Environmental Health Department has very good information about managing rats. We don't recommend trying to catch and release them. Rats are vectors of diseases. It is best to start with good sanitation and limiting any food sources that would attract them. Please see the following page for information on what you can do.
https://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/hhs-special/LandREnviroHealthVectorControl.html

ckc

Thank you for your answer. I understand rats swim, but there is no one around me who has heard of rats locally. So how did I get them? It has been suggested by my family that they were put here on purpose.
We live in deep country, there are no sidewalks or ways to trace these rats and their paths. We live on only 2 acres, but 1/3 is left wild in memory of my sister. Even so there is no way to track little footprints paths over grass. The house is old almost 100 and it is not built on a basement or slab. It is on supports of concrete, therefore animals can have homes under the house. I also have a cat that goes under the house and dogs. So how can I put poison? I am frighted now that we will all get sick. And I am poor and can't afford a professional extraminator . I hope that you can help, as we have seen one baby rat since the others were carted away.

Rats will look for food and shelter so anything you can do to eliminate food/shelter for them around your home will be the first step to keeping them away. Keep trash cans tightly closed. If you have a compost pile or bird feeders, remove them. They can even be attracted to vegetables/fruits in a garden. If you have any holes in the concrete support under your house, seal them up with hardware cloth to exclude animals from going in for shelter. Since you have pets, the best way to trap and remove rats would be to use snap traps rather than poison baits. You will have to exclude your pests from getting near the traps (use temporary fencing). Place the traps where you see actively used tunnels/holes. You can bait the trap with a small amount of bacon. It may take a while for them to come into the trap. Again, sanitation/eliminating potential food sources and exclusion from sheltered areas are the best places to start to prevent rats.

ckc