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Rat Problem

It's likely you've arrived at this page because you have a rat problem, either in your garden or in your loft.

Rats in the garden will only cease to be a problem if their food source is eliminated. In the UK the most common cause of garden rats is feeding birds. If you (or you favourite neighbour) are continually topping up a readily available food supply, the rats will continue in ever greater numbers. Rats breed like crazy and more food means more baby rats. The rat species likely to be a garden problem is the Brown Rat, also known as the Norway Rat (rattus norvegicus).

Rats in the loft are another problem altogether. Because of the amount of climbing involved, these are unlikely to be brown rats. These are probably the Black Rat (rattus rattus) also known (for very good reason) as the roof rat.

Rats in the loft need to be dealt with immediately. They gnaw cables and roof joists, as well as destroying insulation and posing a major health hazard. Rats gnawing electical cables is a major cause of fire.

It's likely rats are entering a loft via gaps in the roof tiles, which the get to via the inside of drainpipes then scurrying along the gutter.
Authority Nutrition The Rats in the Attic website provides practical tips and resources for you to solve any problem you may have with a rat in your loft, attic or house.
Stop Rats Getting In You'll never stop rats in the loft unless you prevent them entering. Check this guide to Stop Rats Gettin In which has some indepth advice.
Think Rat This BASF page explains about Understanding Rat Behavior. Core things to understand are Neuphobia (Rats are scared of newly introduced objects) which helps the evade traps. Nocturnal Feeding - because you don't see them during the day you may not realise the scale of the problem. The site goes into great detail about their annual activity and foraging habits.