Thursday, February 7, 2013

On the depth of ratholes

I decided I had been lethargic enough for long enough about rats down in the onion patch - I've been reluctant to use poison because apparently it will affect my cats and dogs if they eat it or the rats. I'm not big on poison anyway. Traps I am similarly not fond of unless they're the dispatch immediately or catch live kind, and I should have got some of those. The ones I've got are fine for mice, but too small for rats. The soil isn't fertile there, and I have enough other area, so I'd sort of ignored it. The snake issue decided that it was no longer an option, so I decided to fully dig up the rat burrow. The snake I was sure would be long gone, but I had a bucket with lid on standby and a long aluminum pole, and boots and jeans, just in case. I had dug up part of the hole anyway, and surely it couldn't be much longer.

Yeah. Three meters and 45 cm down I knew this was just the doorway to ratdom-under- Nangetty. The tunnel was basically a spade wide, 3 inches high. (the entrance about 2 inches by 2 - and just getting deeper. It was hard digging under gum roots. So I put the hose in, and turned it on. It's water from the well - which is groundwater taken from 40 yards away, so it is just returning it to source... And I waited. It just kept running in. and in. 40 minutes and it never filled.

Traps I guess.

We're getting a reasonable amount of tomatoes at last - not quite enough to freeze, or dry but too much for salad. The birds are a nuisance, but the netted tank is doing well.

I went out on foot last night with a torch and the .22 and shot enough wallaby - 1 - for a month of dog-tucker. It's wonderful to be able to do this. The dogs think so too, as they had fresh roo tail. I do miss my Old English terribly still, and these pictures in my morning newspaper trawl had me sniffling on my keyboard.

1 comment:

  1. You could try gassing the rats.
    Get some garden hose and stick one end down the rat hole.
    Fill in the hole(s) as much as poss with earth around the pipe
    Connect the other end of the pipe to the exhaust of your favourite vehicle. You may find a small plastic coke (or similar) bottle plus duct tape makes a good connector between the hose and the exhaust pipe.
    Turn on engine and let idle for 10-15 mins while you listen to "Belsen Was a Gasser" by the Sex Pistols a few times.

    Voila gassed rat.