Rats and mice
Electronic trap review
Got rats? You need an electric rat trap to keep your coop rodent-free.
Why the need to exterminate rats? Here are just three good reasons.
- Rats carry disease, and their urine leaves disease wherever they run.
- Rats will torment your chickens (they nibble feet at night).
- They eat chicken eggs - and if they're big enough, they'll have a go at eating baby chicks, too.
How do I know?
I found out the hard way. There were hundreds of rats in my coop before I realised what was going on, to the extent that I dreaded going in to see my chickens each day.
I had to discover what works well to get rid of them by trial and error. There are a lot of products on the market but not all of them are effective.
So if you have rats, my aim is to make your life easier - and to keep your flock rat-free. I want to share with you what worked well for me.
This is a review of the only rat trap I use.
Please note: As a matter of principle I only recommend products on this site if I
feel they're good value. Usually I've tried them myself or know and
trust someone else who has.
In this case, I've been using this trap now
for several years, with excellent results.
This trap has been upgraded since I bought mine based on feedback from consumers. The battery compartment is easier to handle, it comes apart for cleaning more easily and it kills even large rats.
Apart from those improvements, it's the same machine. My photos are of the original because it still works, so I've had no need to upgrade.
My links will take you to the latest version. The links are affiliate links which means that if you purchase a product through them i earn a small commission. There is no extra cost for you.
Firstly - Would I recommend Victor's electronic rat trap?
In my experience it's easy to set up, works on both rats and mice, kills quickly and humanely and is convenient for disposal of the remains (you never have to touch the rodent).
This trap has it all.
Strange but true: Did you know that rats can re-start their heart after an electric shock?
if you're looking for a quick and safe way of killing them, you need a
trap which will stop their heart - permanently.
It may sound "heartless" - but
isn't it better than your chickens getting ill? And trust me, get ill they will if rodents are allowed free-rein in your chicken coop.
If you follow my pages you'll know I award products between one and five "Golden Eggs" depending on how good I've found the product. So what do I give the electric rat trap?
A great big golden ...
Top Tip: I bought this trap after I'd dealt with quite a bad rat infestation problem in my chicken run. It takes out one rat at a time, so if you have evidence of a large number of rats you need to get them under control first. See here for options and further advice.
How to use the electric rat trap : Be strategic!
When I was dealing with an infestation, I learned a lot about rats and how to deal with them. In some ways, they're fascinating creatures, and knowing how they behave actually helps when it comes to dealing with them.
So here are a few practical tips.
Please note: Since I bought this trap several years ago, it has been updated. These links will take you to the newer version.
My version, incidentally, is still going strong (when I need it to be) all these years later.
- Rats learn. Sometimes that helps us - like when they learn where
to take the bait. But sometimes it can prevent a trap from working
properly. Be one step ahead to have any hope of catching them.
- They're very cautious animals. They will always avoid something new if
they can until they become used to it. And they always try to avoid
running into or across an open space.
- The answer? No matter which trap you're using, place it close to a wall or boundary fence where you know or
suspect the rodents are running. Make sure the opening of the trap is closest to the wall.
- Leave it turned off for several days, but put food in it so
they get used to a free source of goodies. Once it's been in place for a
while, turn it on and bait it.
What to use as bait?
You'll find a lot of conflicting advice about this.
I've found four things that seem to work well:
- peanut butter
- bacon bits
- mashed up cat food.
Whichever you use, you don't need a lot of it - on this trap a smear will work well.
How does the electric rat trap work?
- These traps are powered by four 'C' batteries which the manufacturers say will kill around 50 rats. I've found it to be a lower number than that - probably around ten to twelve.
- The rat, enticed into the box by a
yummy treat at the entrance and smeared on the back wall, steps on a metal plate.
triggers an electric shock which - as long as the batteries are full or
nearly full - kills within a couple of seconds.
- A green light will flash on top of the unit to tell you there's remains needing to be disposed of.
- If the battery is getting low, a red light flashes to warn you to replace.
- It's relatively quick, unlike
poison or some of the other methods which are slow and drawn out. Much as I dislike rats, I prefer to dispatch them in as humane a way as possible.
- The rat is killed without blood being spilled which makes cleaning up
easy - you just slide the body into two plastic bags, seal them and put
them in the waste.
- I've personally found the electric rat trap to be extremely effective where other types have failed.
- The main drawback - and it is an important one to consider - is that the batteries need to
be kept full, otherwise the shock isn't enough to kill.
- I've found that the batteries have lasted for between ten and twelve rats.
- Rechargeable batteries can help minimise the cost of constant replacements.
- Even if the batteries are low, it
will give your unwelcome visitor a solid warning that it's not welcome.
Does it work?
I use this electric trap now as my main method of getting rid of rats, and yes, I've
found it to be very effective, particularly when combined with a cat
or two and proper care of my chickens' grain storage.
It's important to re-state, though, that I used it only after I'd spent time getting rid of a large infestation of rodents in my chicken run.
Until you have the population under control this trap won't be of much use because it can only kill one at a time.
I prefer it to snap traps because of the lack of blood
and gore. The body is very easily disposed of without leaving a mess behind, avoiding a potential hazard to chickens, pets, wildlife and children.
This button will take you to the latest version of this trap.
Need more information about controlling rats in your coop?