All allotment tenants are asked to take steps to discourage rats from the allotment sites:
- Keep your plot tidy and make sure to avoid overgrown areas. Do not allow rubbish to build up (eg timber, old carpet, plastic, containers etc). Built up rubbish and other material provides cover for rats to live under.
- Turn the contents of your compost heap/bin regularly (at least twice a year), to disturb any rats that may make a compost bin their home.
- Plastic compost bins should have a small gauge wire mesh covering the bas, or can be placed on paving slabs, to stop rats burrowing in from underneath
- Regularly check your compost bin.
- Do not use your compost bin to dispose of household waste. Never put meat, dairy, bones, cooked foods etc in your compost bin. It will attract rats and make your bin smell.
- When fruit and vegetables are ready, harvest and take them home to enjoy (otherwise the can be a food source for rats).
- Fruit and vegetables with signs of rat damage should be destroyed. Rats carry risk of Weil’s disease, Salmonella and Laptospirosis among other things and they urinate wherever they go.
- Sheds must be made rat-proof. Holes should be blocked and regular checks should be made to ensure that rats are not living underneath sheds or taking up residence in your greenhouse.
- Store seeds, bulbs etc in rodent-proof containers.