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Honey Do List: Rat baits

Last week I wrote about rat and mouse traps, so in keeping with that topic let’s take a look at poisonous baits.

The standard used to be pellets and granular baits that came in boxes that made handy dispensers that mice and rats could easily feed from. This has changed drastically, likely from a safety point of view for children and pets.

Poisonous baits now come in small cubes that should be placed in bait stations. These bait stations are large enough for the rodents but small enough that a child or pet would have a hard time coming into contact with the bait. These stations should be placed where you see signs, such as droppings, of rodents. Keep an eye on the area, and remove the baits when signs cease to exist.

Bait can also be used outdoors, and the station will help keep it dry. If you like, you can secure the bait with a nail through the hole in the center. This will keep larger rats from carrying them off. Again, use common sense when placing baits, and consider animals you might not want to kill, such as squirrels, chipmunks and pets.

There are many other options for rodent control. Sonic repellents have gotten much cheaper and smaller. These devices plug into an electrical outlet and emit ultrasound waves that drive rodents away. You can’t use these if you have pets that are related to mice, such as hamsters, guinea pigs or gerbils.

There are also non-poisonous repellents that can be used. These are great for outside areas where mice and squirrels like to nest and chew up things such as idle vehicles, lawnmowers or campers.

Which product you use is a matter of personal preference and what works best for your rodent situation. Remember, help is just around the corner at your local hardware store.

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