Ratty McRatface

31 05 2017

Rats! Yes, real rats. In our shed. One of the ‘advantages’ of living in a semi-rural location.

I’d seen evidence of them in the shed before, and had put down RatSack. Some time later there was a god-awful smell that could only have been a decomposing rat somewhere in the shed. We couldn’t find it, but eventually the smell went away (it’s a BIG shed — 6 x 12 m).

I was in there a few weeks ago and vacuumed up more rat scat, but when I went in there a week or two ago there was a whole heap of rat scat, particularly in one place. Ewwww! I swept it up (I wasn’t using the vac for that!), then discovered more in the shelves above. These shelves house my gardening supplies and chemicals. Most of the stuff is in lidded plastic tubs, but some taller items are in small open tubs. And these tubs had lots of rat scat. The worst was the tub that had two packets of green snail pellets.

And then I discovered that the dirty rat had eaten a big hole in the snail pellet packet and had left his (I don’t know if it’s a male or female, but use ‘his’ here) scat INSIDE the packet. That explained why some of the scat was dark green… He’d started to attack the other packet, but no doubt was still feasting on the first one. He’d also eaten part of the foam handle of a gardening tool — there were teeth marks and tiny little claw marks where he’d held it! Little bugger.

Teeth marks at the top of the handle, and claw marks in the foam grip

Teeth marks at the top of the handle, and claw marks in the foam grip

Teeth marks at the top of the handle, and claw marks in the foam grip

Teeth marks at the top of the handle, and claw marks in the foam grip

 

I cleaned everything up and tossed out the snail pellets (how they didn’t kill him, I don’t know — obviously he found them very tasty!). I also put down more RatSack.

Two days later I went back into the shed. The RatSack packets I’d tossed onto the floor were gone! The little sod had taken them somewhere, so I put down three more packets. The next day they were all gone too. I didn’t put down more. I figured that 5 packets of RatSack should be more than enough.

What I did notice when I went back into the shed after putting down the first lot of RatSack was that instead of rat scat, there was a small pile of white stuff below the benches where the tub was that had held the snail pellets. It wasn’t rat poop, and then I saw that it looked like white plastic. I looked a little closer and at the shelves and saw that this rat had chewed through an entire corner of a hard-plastic tub and had started work on another one! Unbelievable! I thought storing stuff in tubs would prevent vermin getting in, but not so. This was one determined rat — and possibly one crazed rat from the RatSack it’d eaten.

Hard white plastic bits on the floor below the shelves

Hard white plastic bits on the floor below the shelves

 

How on earth did he eat this? It's hard plastic and it's three shelves up from the floor, and there's nothing he could stand on to reach it. Unless he ate it from inside, but that would've been a feat to get his teeth into that rounded corner.

How on earth did he eat this? It’s hard plastic and it’s three shelves up from the floor, and there’s nothing he could stand on to reach it. Unless he ate it from inside, but that would’ve been a feat to get his teeth into that rounded corner.

He started chewing on another tub, also 3 shelves up and nothing to stand on. It's clear he's attacking it from outside, not inside the tub.

He started chewing on another tub, also 3 shelves up and nothing to stand on. It’s clear he’s attacking it from outside, not inside the tub.

I left everything for a week, then ventured into the shed again. This time there was a faint odour of decomposing flesh, which I can only assume was the rat. A couple of days later the smell was stronger, but we couldn’t find the rat’s body. Oh well, it will eventually decay, dry out, get eaten by ants, whatever.

I think we got it. And I’m not going back into the shed until the smell has gone 🙂 Fortunately, it’s not summer, when the pong would be unbearable.

Update 25 June 2017:

Operation Rat – over? Since I wrote the blog post above more have ‘passed away’ with the help of RatSack packs. Then on Friday my wonderful handyman discovered where they were getting in (not where I thought) and has now concreted those openings and another set of openings where I thought they might be getting in. I thought it was over…

But this morning (Sunday) I went into the shed to get some gardening tools and noticed 2 packs of RatSack (which were there earlier in the week) were gone, and there was more dead rat smell. My DH used his nose to hunt the dead rat and found it inside a big empty box – with a live rat!!!! After much to-ing and fro-ing, the live rat is now a dead rat, is buried with the other dead rat and a dead baby in the no-man’s land behind the shed, and the box (which stunk of dead rat and was likely their nest) has now been burned.

I think the rat problem is no more, but just to be sure, I’ve put down another 3 packs of RatSack… Stay tuned…

 


Actions

Information

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s




%d bloggers like this: