Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Oh Rats!

Farms and rats go hand in hand, I have a philosophy that if they leave my animals alone, and I don't see them they can stay, however, begin to annoy me and it is war! when we first arrived there was a massive rat issue, as this place had been empty for some time. The rats had been allowed to bred, therefore, they were everywhere.

The first time I came face to face with one in the orchard, I was horrified, however, confident that with three cats and a terrier, the issue would be "dealt with" Oh how wrong I was...our cats love hunting lizards, and have no interest in the rats at all. The dog came face to face with a rat one night, and just stood there...this was round one to the rats!

We went to the ferreterria and asked for their help, they suggested getting a cat...errr yep we have three, and they are useless! So we bought a trap, "jaws of death" it was called, and I felt confident that it would do the trick. That night we placed delicious food on the trap, put it in place and waited. The next morning my husband went bounding down to the trap, it had been set off, food gone, but no dead rat! round two to the rat!

By this point they had begun to annoy me, and had killed some chicks and ducklings, which made it immediate war! We had to step up our game,and poison was suggested, however, I am always concerned with that as we have so many other animals, we have two more ideas, before we had to go down the poison route.

Our friend was going away and asked it we could look after her terrier, we were delighted to, and of course she had assured me that he would deal with the rats. I was confident that the rat issue would be stopped with this great hunting dog at the finca. Oh how wrong could I be, we took him out in the orchard, he saw a rat and...ran in the opposite direction...round three to the rat!

We were at breaking point as more chicken feed was vanishing, and more than the damage they had begun to do, it was the fact that we had been outsmarted by small, ugly creatures! My husband borrowed a gun, and he waited, and he waited, and when they finally appeared he took his chance, but the rats are hardy, and the small calibre gun did nothing...round four to the rats!

The poison had to come out, and with gloves on and a plan we dropped it down every rat hole we knew off, ensuring that it was well covered and no other animal could get to it and be harmed. I don't like poisoning animals, however, the rats gave us no choice, they were not going to play by the rules, which resulted in the final result.

We begun to find dead bodies, which wasn't pleasant, but necessary! In my mind the only rat we want to see is remy!

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