Why do you find more rats in your house during winter? The cold winters drive the rats indoors, right into your house, seeking warmth and food scraps. However, rats don’t settle for food and shelter alone. They want action, and they chew up cabinets and bureaus and don’t spare food boxes, which are their favorites. That’s when you start thinking, “what kills rats instantly?” Because you want to get rid of the rodent menace that’s causing havoc in your home. The rat menace is not restricted to homes; a Mississippi State University report states that rats and mice are a major concern on poultry farms.
Here are some of the fastest ways to get rid of rats:
Setting up Traps
The outdated mouse trap is one of the best ways to capture rats and eliminate them. Whether you want to let them go somewhere far away in the wild or terminate them is your decision. You can set up the traps in strategic locations; near trash cans, along the walls, near food boxes, in the attic, etc. The most commonly used traps are the spring-action snap traps, which not only trap the mice, but this is what kills rats instantly, although there may be a bloody mess to clean up later. You can choose from the clam, bar, or hidden kill type, whichever suits you best. Just be careful your fingers don’t get caught while setting the trap.
Electric Traps are great for luring unsuspecting rats inside before giving them a nasty shock that kills them. The best part with electric rat traps is that they are designed to be harmless for humans or pets, and nothing happens when they touch them.
Sticky traps are again quite a straightforward method to trap rats, though they don’t get killed. These traps comprise a board filled with highly adhesive glue, and once the rat steps in, it cannot step out. You can either release it live, or exterminate it the way you choose.
Live traps are boxes that close shut as soon as the rat enters and takes a nibble at the bait set inside. The traps usually close with a sharp clapping sound, and you know your prey is caught. Getting rid of a rat trapped in such a trap box may be slightly tricky as they are very restless inside and tend to scratch around and act very scared. You could either drown the rat in a bucket of water or release it in the wild.
Prevent them from Entering
Prevention is better than cure, and this applies to preventing rats from entering your premises in the first place. Even a dime-sized opening is enough for a rat to scramble through. If you see any such tiny holes or gaps anywhere around the house, seal them with caulk and steel wool because this is something rats don’t like to gnaw through. You may want to check the chimney, the attic, the garage, spots where the plumbing enters the home, and any other likely location where a tiny hole is enough for a rat to gnaw its way through.
Keeping your garden free of overgrowths helps keep rats away. If you store firewood, keep the stack well away from the house. Rats find a haven in wood stacks and might have built nests there.
Don’t leave food crumbs lying around in the open in the kitchen or near the trash cans. Also, ensure the trash cans are shut tightly without gaps, as rats love entering trash cans looking for food scraps. Open trash cans don’t invite just rats; they attract other pests like ants and cockroaches. Leaving food in a cat or dog bowl is an open invitation to rats, which make a beeline targeting the food. Even leaving empty cardboard cartons or waste paper around attracts rats. They love gnawing on boards and paper, so get rid of such things, or recycle them.
The opinions are divided about using essential oils as rat repellents. People have been using essential oils as a home remedy to keep rats away. Some folks claim strongly that the strong smell of clove oil and peppermint repels rats and keeps them away. If you want to try essential oils, the best way is to soak cotton balls in the oil and place them in areas rats frequent most. Simply spraying the oil in the areas may not work well enough as the smell gets disbursed in the air quickly. Strong smelling detergents may also make good rat repellents, but you never know until you try.
Summing it Up
Rats are probably the biggest pest menace, next only to termites, which destroy all the woodwork in your home. Getting rid of rats is a tricky business. If you don’t succeed with the conventional methods, it is advisable to call in the professionals who will eradicate the vermin.