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Rats FAQs

Question 3

I live on a farm in PA. My house is 250 years old and made of stone. We have horses, chickens (3 hens and 1 rooster), dogs and cats. We always seem to have a problem with the yellowjackets and wasps wanting to build nests in and on our house. My husband is allergic to these insects and last year we had to resort to a pest company to get rid of the ones on and in the house as he went into shock twice. I'm sure what they use is pretty nasty. Any alternatives? Also, this year we are overrun with gnats, which is surprising as its been a relatively dry spring. What can we do? And third, we, for the first time ever, have been invaded by rats. They steal all the eggs and eat all the chickens feed. My husband has caught three in a havaheart trap (we use this because we don't want to accidentally kill something else) and drowns them. He has hooked up a long hose to the tractor exhaust and stuck it down their hole and tried to gas the buggers. We think it got some of them but not all. HELP!!

Question 5

I have a major problem with rats and mice. Other years traps have kept them under control but this year they are not working. I have 2 cats who catch at least 1 rodent each a day but it is not enough. I don't want to lay poison if I can avoid it. The house is rented and old so has plenty of entry points for the rodents. Unfortunately the landlord will not let me fill up a lot of them in case damage is caused to the pipes/wires in the process. I have tried garlic but it needs replacing almost daily and seems to have only a limited success rate. I also have several ultra sonic devices which again have worked in previous years but not any longer. I would appreciate any advice you can offer as to how I can discourage the rodents although I know that it is probably almost impossible. There is also a large ferral cat population living in the grounds (we are in the country and have 18acres of woodland/scrubland) which could also have something to do with more of them coming into the house and back yard this year. Any help would be much appreciated.