We all delight in having gardens to provide food and beautify our homes.
As much as gardens are a source of food for humans, they provide a haven for unwanted pests such as rodents.
The rodents include rats, mice and voles. If care is not taken, these animals find their way into the house causing more havoc.
It is, therefore, important to know the best way to get rid of rats in the garden before they cause a lot of damage.
The rats in the garden can cause a lot of harm such as gnawing on tree barks and stems, crippling roots and making pathways that make the lawn look unpresentable.
To ensure that your effort of getting rid of the rats bore fruit, it is important to provide sanitary conditions for your garden and ensure they are above standard.
Methods of killing rats in the garden
Many methods are available to kill these destructive creatures. However, in my research, I have found the 3 best ways to kill rats include;
Mousetraps and Baits
Traps and baits are the most common. They are preferred because they are easy to set up and do not require a lot of preparation.
In addition, they are readily available and affordable.
Another great reason why users prefer this is that most kill the rats instantly without having to involve the user.
There are three types of traps available. They include snap/spring type, electric traps and live capture traps.
The spring or snap type of traps have a release design that instantly kills the animal when it steps on it. All that is required is to add some food that acts as bait.
Also, proper positioning of the trap is essential.
Care needs to be taken to ensure that other children or pets do not access the positioned traps.
Electric traps are also referred to as electrocution traps. They are traps designed to release high voltage shock when the rat steps on the metal place in the trap containment box.
Although more expensive, they are gaining popularity. However, not all electric traps are suitable for the outdoor areas.
For the live capture traps, they catch the animal alive and is up to the owner to dispose of the animal. They lock in when the mice pull the bait.
These types of traps are recommended for users who prefer humane methods of elimination.
2. Chemical poison
Chemical toxins such as Brodifacoum work effectively to kill rats immediately or a few minutes after they have eaten the poison.
The best way to lure these animals is to lace some food or snack such as peanut butter with the poison.
Moreover, locate it in the area where the impacts of the rats have been spotted.
Since most of the poisons are anticoagulants, they work by inhibiting blood clotting of the rat.
The lack of blood clotting causes bleeding and hemorrhage to the animal which results in internal death. This is the best way to kill rats quickly.
Other poisons work by making the animal very thirsty.
Without access to water, the animal dies.
However, you need to be careful when locating this poison to ensure children and pets do not contact it.
Continuously monitor the area to know whether the rats have been killed and then remove any remaining poison laced contents.
Also, remember to use protective gear such as gloves to protect yourself.
The immediate removal of any found dead mouse is advised to prevent secondary poisoning.
3. Use of pets
Using pets such as cats and dogs is among the best way to get rid of rats.
It is simply carried out by letting the pet loose and allow it to roam in the garden.
The presence of the pets will scare the rodents away, and in other circumstances, cats can be able to catch the rats and kill them.
Although this is not a lasting solution, it may work to reduce the damage on crops before harvesting or putting in place preventive measure of protection.
Protecting the garden and crops from mice
It is said that prevention is better than cure. Some of the ways to prevent the entry of mice or rats into your garden are as follows;
Use of hardware cloth
The hardware cloth is utilized to protect the growing area of crops.
The materials are installed to encircle the garden about 6 inches below the level of the soil.
You may take it a step further by protecting the individual plants using cloth cylinders.
It is a simple method of keeping away the pesky rats.
The fencing should be done properly to ensure no gaps are left that may allow access.
Also, ensure that the fencing material is durable to withstand gnawing which may create holes that provide the mice entry.
The fence should also be buried deep to prevent burrowing.
Use of repellents
There are two types of repellents available, chemical and ultrasonic repellents.
Chemical repellents are products that are chemical products sprayed around the garden to keep the rats away.
The products although useful, need to be frequently applied since they wear off with changing environmental conditions.
Furthermore, it is critical to use a chemical that does not affect the plants and animals in the garden.
Ultrasonic repellents, on the other hand, are devices that emit sound at a frequency that is audible to rats and mice.
It is usually a high volume sound that frightens the animals keeping them away.
The only disadvantage of using the ultrasound devices is that the rats may get used to the sound with time and access the area.
In addition, the frequency of sound may be blocked by objects reducing the impact.
Finally, the sound dissipates fast creating the need to use many of the devices to increase the frequency.
Clearing of debris
Waste and other materials such as compost piles create a conducive environment for rats and other rodents to thrive.
It is advisable to clear such debris to discourage the mice from hiding in the areas and accessing food that keeps them in your garden.
Alternatively, locate compost piles away from the garden or put the materials in containers that are correctly sealed to minimize access.
Rats and mice in the garden cause more harm than good.
We, therefore, need to identify the best way to get rid of them.
There are several ways of killing rats. These include the use of traps, chemical poison and pets.
The method you choose to use depends on the situation on your garden. You also have to consider other occupants of your household such as children and pets.
In case your garden is not yet infested with the mice, there are several options available to keep away the rats away. Choose the best method that you can manage and is sustainable.
Depending on your situation, use the methods described and let me know in the comment section what has worked for you! Happy gardening