To help with the "little rat problem" that I am trying to deal with Andy (Highseat) very kindly sent me a couple of spare Fenn Mk 4 traps on an "indefinite loan", something which I am very grateful for, many thanks Andy, you're a real gent! They arrived yesterday and looked pretty well weathered so I went up and set them so they could start working straight away.
To set them I put a couple of breeze blocks up on edge about 4 inches from the back of the poultry house where the rat runs are. I set the two traps about 6 inches either side of the hole and then covered the run over with another couple of breeze blocks so that if any rats came out from that hole they had to go one way or the other through the breeze block tunnel and would have to cross over one of the traps no matter which way they went. I also put a couple of bamboo canes at either end of the breeze block tunnel to stop and hedgehogs or other "non-target species" from gaining access to the tunnel and traps. That was about 3:00 yesterday afternoon!
I have just been up to check the traps this morning and found that one of them had a very large buck rat caught in it as dead as a dodo! That to me is a great result as I did not expect to find anything quite so quickly.
I have another 4 traps on order by mail order so when they arrive I will set them in the same manner from another couple of the runs that come from the other holes under the back of the 2 poultry sheds. I'll try to remember to get some photos showing how I have set them up!
I will of course be checking all traps at least once (if not twice) each day as I am going up there anyway to try to cull a couple of the older roe does from the woods below the farmhouse, so it really is no problem to me and the permission is less than a 10 minute drive from my home anyhow!
As a foot note I noticed this morning that a couple of magpies are taking advantage of the feed from my deer feeder (Which I can view quite easily from a discrete distance in a well hidden elevated spot) so a trip with the shotgun might well be in order as well for an extra bit of "sport/vermin control" - That is when the weather decides that it isn't going to be blowing a gale, which it is right at the moment!
I do also have a Larsen trap running there throughout most of the spring, summer and autumn which seems to catch quite well!