Tuesday, February 24, 2009


Finally, a catch! Mr Mousy has no sympathy for the hispid cotton rat that was in the trap this morning. This is his patch and intruders are not welcome. If you read the link above you will wonder why on earth I am so kind to our furry visitor. I had been wondering why he could possibly need to be eating all my larkspurs and blue eyed grass when he must have collected thousands of seeds from the gomphrena over the summer and fall. The fact is they were just to  fulfill his daily needs. These rats do not store food! However I have learnt they like oats, so in future I won't be using tomatoes. 
I know there are tens more living in the garden so the trap will be set again tonight.


  1. Quite right too!

    BTW, what do you do with them once you have them in that cage?
    Setting them free means they will come straight back, don't they?

    You're up at dawn again, aren't you.

    Have been meaning to ask: do you have snakes to contend with? If so, which kind? Rattlers? worse? Brrrr.

  2. I'm always up at dawn Jo-around 7am at the moment. We take them down to the bottom of the hill where we live. I doubt these things come back. Yes we have snakes although rarely see them. Mostly they are garter or rat snakes(of course) but we once had a coral snake. They are supposed to take care of these rats but according to the tamu article predators can barely make a dent in the population. Disease is the major control of the populations. They usually live in the grasses but they have found a very comfortable place to live here with great food. Neither of us can do the bucket of water thing!

  3. eeewww! that is a rather large rat. I could never do the bucket of water thing either (and thankfully I have never had a close encounter with a rat in which it might be considered). you are brave for lugging that thing around in a cage to set it loose. when I think of rats I think of city sewer rats instead of your grass-dwelling rat. as far as i can tell, city rats prefer garbage bins to larkspurs. good luck catching up with the rest of your rodent population.

  4. Cheeky little plant eating monkey!
    I am curious as to where you got this trap from?
    Did you see Bob's (Draco gardens) deer mouse? Ahh, if only they were all as nice as this chappie!

  5. The trap is called havahart- I think it came from Breeds. Thinking of doing a bit of trapping? Our neighbor has a very big one and he has caught skunks and possums and raccoons. I know they come around here but I haven't caught them doing any damage. The rats do more damage than anything. I took a look at Bob's site. His critters are just the same as ours.