Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Us: 1, Rats: 0

A couple nights ago, Forrest went into the pantry/laundry room and discovered a rat staring back at him from atop the water heater. So over the weekend we spent the better part of a day moving all the pantry food into the kitchen or throwing it out (Pasta Roni from 2003, I miss you!). As far as we could tell, the rat(s) had only gnawed on a bag of rice.

We bought some nasty-powerful rat traps and baited them with peanut butter (per my dad's suggestion) for a couple of nights without arming the traps, so the rats would be complacent and unsuspecting. Last night, Forrest finally armed the traps for the first time. Around 1 AM, Forrest woke up, saying that he'd though he had heard a commotion and a rat-squeal from the pantry. It being 1 AM, he decided to go back to sleep and check the trap in the morning.

As you can see from the photo, we got the sucker! Please note that both Forrest and I had rats as pets when we were kids, so it's not that we hate rats indiscriminately. We just don't want rats living in our pantry, or worse, infiltrating the rest of the house.

We're hoping it was just this one rat — it's a small female, so maybe it was working on setting up a nest. We're hoping there isn't a colony of rats ready to move in to our pantry. But we'll be setting more traps tonight, just in case.


John Cowan said...

Pleee-eease be careful next time. Wild rats are covered with lice and fleas carrying extremely nasty diseases up to and including bubonic plague, and with the rat dead they are looking for a new host -- and that could be you. What is worse, most doctors don't know how to diagnose rat-borne diseases reliably, and people have died because it took too long to figure out what he had.

If you must handle dead rats, do so with heavy gloves and extreme caution.

--Yours from New Rat City.

Shelley: the Dread Pirate Rodgers said...

I want to know how much gold Forrest got for his ratting. :-)

Good idea to continue to set the traps for several days/nights *just in case* there are ratty friends and relatives.

Lisa R said...

Poor rat. :(

Bethanie said...

Wow, that's brilliant to bait the traps without arming them first! Very tricksey!

(OMG, my word vert is "slashi"... how appropo...heh)