This mild winter seems to have been a good season for rats, and other rodents, as our Rocket Gardener (and her dog, who is apparently quite a good ratter) have discovered. Here are some of our suggestions for keeping populations down in your compost bins, which they love to reside in, assuming you don’t have a rat-obsessed terrier like hers!
- Put a couple of layers of chicken wire at the base of your dalek-style compost bins to (hopefully!) prevent them from coming in from beneath.
- Turn compost piles regularly – rats don’t like to be disturbed
- Once turned, the rats will disperse. Soak your compost pile thoroughly…it’ll dissuade them from returning!
- Keep food sources in the garden to a minimum – Clear up fallen bird feed from the ground in the garden, and if you have hens, keep runs clean and take up feeders over night.
- Watch out if adding kitchen waste to the compost pile… eggshells etc are a firm favourite with rats! You may find it less rat-enticing to use a wormery for veg peelings, tea bags and coffee grounds from the kitchen