You have a nice little garden in your backyard that you’ve been tending for the last few months, and now it’s finally time to harvest the vegetables and fruits that you’ve planted. But as soon as you start picking them, you notice that something has been chewing through your yield. As it turns out, your garden has attracted some unwanted attention from Norway rats. Norway rats are omnivores, meaning that they will eat pretty much everything, including vegetables and fruits. So how do you keep your garden rat-free?
The Norway rat
Norway rats are nocturnal rodents that can get quite big, weighing 18 ounces. They are very agile, and very adaptable, being able to live in sewers, garbage, homes, and outdoors in their burrows. Besides destroying the produce in your garden, Norway rats are also capable of spreading a plethora of diseases, either through direct contact, their droppings and their urine, or through the parasites that they carry on their bodies.
One of the worst aspects of this pest is its fast reproduction rate. If there are enough food sources around, a rat nest explodes in numbers, with two rats quickly turning into dozens if the infestation is left unchecked.
What brings a Norway rat to the garden?
Odds are that the rats were not initially drawn to your garden. Rats have a very good sense of smell, so they are likely drawn to the smell of garbage, compost waste, pet food, or outdoor grills. Once on the property, the rats will continue their search for food and they may stumble across your garden, or they may enter your home.
How to prevent rats from attacking the garden?
Keeping rats out of your garden can be hard. Growing plants such as mint can help, since rats hate the smell, and you can preemptively place traps around the garden, but outside of that, there is little protection that you can have outdoors. Luckily, if the rats do set up near your property, you can get rid of the infestation with the help of a pro. DIY outdoor rat control is even harder than indoor control, because the rats have all the space in the world to travel, and because they have plenty of food sources, so they may not be drawn to the bait in your traps. If you are currently dealing with such an infestation, give us a call, and we will come over and remove it for you.