Mocathalon 2012: Category 18# Out of Lego or P.S.A. How to catch a rat in your home. . Choose something in real life, and build a 1:1 scale replica of it out of LEGO. For example, build a model of a pencil out of LEGO, or perhaps a book, or maybe a cell-phone. Any object, any size.
. The Bricks Strike Back
Hello everyone, todayís important service announcement revolves around a most reviled animal (at least when itís not the family pet) the common roof rat. The roof rat or Rattus rattus, is a native of the jungles of Southeast Asia but thanks to the ineptitude of men and the ease of access to the holds of ships has been successfully spread throughout the world. These invasive pests can survive on almost any food source but generally prefer fruits, nuts, berries, dry pet foods, garden snails and even bird seed.
Now youíre probably wondering what does this have to do with me? Well, rats can easily enter homes through very small openings. A rat only needs a hole Ĺ an inch in diameter! On top of that these animals can be highly destructive chewing on everything from wood furniture and molding to plastic insulated water pipes or even electrical wiring creating fire hazards.
Thatís why one must remain vigilant and keep an eye out for evidence of their presence. For example, the first thing you will most likely discover is their droppings like those seen here. They generally measure around Ĺ inch in length and are pointed on both ends. Rats have no bladder or bowel control so they will excrete their waste where they are traveling. This is often along walls and other solid surfaces because rats instinctively use this as a guide with their whiskers acting as touch receptors (think the blind man with a cane scenario).
Once you find their evidence, donít go rushing to clean it up. Rats can tell when an area has been changed and then they will hide somewhere else. Instead find out they got in and seal up the hole. You donít need this guy bringing his whole family to move in with you! By now I hope you have also noticed the placement of the trap. If you have only one trap, aim it so that it will snap towards the wall. This way it can kill the rat whether itís coming from the left or the right.
A trap placed this way only has a 50% chance of killing the rat because he might hit it from the wrong side. If it goes off and doesn't kill the rat, it will become "trap shy" and be much harder to catch in any trap.
The next thing to do is set your trap in the location with food on it but DO NOT arm it for at least the first day or two. Let the rat steal the first couple of pieces because they have a mental defense mechanism called neophobia that causes them to be extra cautious around new things in their environment. By letting them get away the food, they overcome their fear and then more readily go into the traps. My personal choices are pieces of dry pet food a.k.a. dog kibble or a hard nut of any kind. Peanut butter and cheese generally donít work well because a nimble rat can slowly nibble off soft food like these and not set off the trigger.
Now that the rat has stolen a couple of free meals he thinks he can get away with it whenever he chooses. Actually though, it's time to arm the trap and set him up for the kill.
As predicted our unwelcome guest has come come back for more easy pickings, or so he thinks!
Now striking the armed pressure plate, the locking bar disengages and the spring loaded bar comes crashing down across the rat's head for an immediate kill shot.
If you have two traps, you can space them at least six or more inches apart so if one goes off it wonít trigger the other.
Another technique is to aim them in opposite directions so you can kill more than one rat coming from either side. This technique also works well along the tops of fences and walls where these rats like to frequently run.
One last thing, after killing the invading vermin, remember to place the trap back in the same location with food on it again.
If there are additional rats present they will follow the path laid by their kin to the same location and meet the same fate.
My personal advice is to leave the trap for at least a week and if you can go that long without the trap being sprung or no new evidence then you have eliminated the rats!
If you have any questions, contact your local environmental health department or pest control company. Thank you and good day.
Rats do come in a variety of colors but among the most common are greyish brown along the back with a white belly.
No rats were hurt in the making of this P.S.A. all stunts were performed by trained ABS professionals.
Yes, this is what I do for a living. Check the poop.