Rodents like being in our gardens. They have such easy access to food and waste in the garden that once they settle down it is quite difficult to get rid of them. Before rats learned to sneak into our homes they were extremely wild creatures. A garden offers a place similar to the wild. They can enjoy eating the fruits and berries and have a great time burrowing into the ground! This increases the threat of rat infestation in the garden. If the population grows too large it could pose a threat to you and your family.
How can I tell if there is a rat infestation in my garden?
Since rats are nocturnal, the chances of seeing one during the day are very rare. But if you have seen a rat in your garden during the day it means that there is a rat infestation. You can check for the following pieces of evidence that confirm rat infestation.
- Seeing burrows (6-9 cm deep) in your garden especially near the plants.
- Tracks marks all over your garden and around your vegetation is a sure sign of rat infestation. These tracks are the pathways from their nest to your garden.
- Marks on the wood, stones, fences and gate posts.
- Moist rat droppings throughout the garden
- Gnaw marks and damages to your fences, vegetation and half eaten produce.
Where do rats live in the garden?
Our gardens offer the best space for rodents like mice, rats, and voles to settle in. Whether your garden is big or small, it offers enough supply of waste and other food items for these uninvited guests to nourish and flourish. Along with causing huge destruction to your plants they also spread diseases. Compost piles, wooden structures, plastic containers, cardboard, and trees offer enough options for them to chew on.
Our gardens also offer them plenty of nesting grounds. Some of the hiding places include –
- Under the compost pile
- Inside shrubberies
- Inside the glasshouses and sheds
- Under the barrels
- Beneath piles of grass
Should I use rat poison in my garden?
No, however tempting it might seem, never use rat poison in your garden. Our gardens are accessed by dogs, cats as well as children. Irresponsible use of poison in the garden can harm others. Rat poison should only be administered by professional pest controllers because they have the tools to secure the location so that it doesn’t harm anyone else.
What should you do if you see a rat in your garden?
- If you see signs of rat infestation the first thing that you need to do is clean your garden. Remove all the sources of shelter, water, and food. Some of the most common sources of food include compost bins, fallen berries, and fruits.
- Don’t compost fish, meat, cheese, or any product that has odors that are very tempting to rats. Also, keep your compost wet to prevent nesting
- Try using bleach to keep away rats. Bleach has a strong smell that repels rats. Using bleach for a short period of time consistently can get rid of rats.