Rats


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bwallace
bwallace
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Having lived on board for 14 years, we have always been careful with vermin coming on board. We have only tied up once in the last two months which was over 2 weeks ago.
two days ago Sue saw a rat under the spray hood, it scarpered pretty quick, and we did find evidence on deck of droppings, but so far nothing down below.
I high tailing it in the dinghy two miles to the local town to get traps and poison. I discovered that although I could get a trap, Poison was not easily available any more. I would have to go to a specialist pest control place.
Now it seems that Rat Poison has been missed off as an important item on a Cruising boat.
So I suggest that before leaving port, you obtain some and keep carefully stored in the boat supplies.
I know there may be many legal angles to stop you doing so, I just thought anyone setting left should consider it and not be caught out like us.

We have not seen or heard anything since the original sighting, or little clues left on deck. but we are extremely vigilant now.

This has been our finding in Greece, and assume the same would apply to most EU countries and possibly most first world countries.

Brian and Sue
S/V Darramy in the Peloponnisos
Dick
Dick
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bwallace - 6/11/2019
Having lived on board for 14 years, we have always been careful with vermin coming on board. We have only tied up once in the last two months which was over 2 weeks ago.two days ago Sue saw a rat under the spray hood, it scarpered pretty quick, and we did find evidence on deck of droppings, but so far nothing down below. I high tailing it in the dinghy two miles to the local town to get traps and poison. I discovered that although I could get a trap, Poison was not easily available any more. I would have to go to a specialist pest control place.Now it seems that Rat Poison has been missed off as an important item on a Cruising boat.So I suggest that before leaving port, you obtain some and keep carefully stored in the boat supplies.I know there may be many legal angles to stop you doing so, I just thought anyone setting left should consider it and not be caught out like us.We have not seen or heard anything since the original sighting, or little clues left on deck. but we are extremely vigilant now.This has been our finding in Greece, and assume the same would apply to most EU countries and possibly most first world countries.Brian and Sue S/V Darramy in the Peloponnisos

Hi Brian & Sue,
Good advice: consider having rat traps which are significantly larger than mouse traps. Both we found hard to locate in that part of the world.
Greece is wonderful, but has very creative and persistent rats. Being tied up is not the only way to invite the creatures aboard. We saw them swimming in anchorages and climbing chain and snubber lines. Some boats had "collars" on their rode to discourage entry.
Good luck getting rid of them.
My best, Dick Stevenson, s/v Alchemy
zgriswold
zgriswold
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Hi - Sorry to hear you’ve encountered a rat! Hopefully it’s gone on its way. If not, you may want to favor rat traps over poison so that once they’ve done their job, you can dispose of the rat off the boat. They’re super smart so it may take a while! A poisoned rat may well die in some inaccessible part of the boat and take some time to rot away, with all the attendant headaches of noxious smell, not to mention attracting even more vermin. Good luck! - Zdenka/Kite
Nigel Studdart
Nigel Studdart
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Ah the sheer thought of a rat aboard sends shivers up my back . In 30 years only once last year did we get a rat . That was in Peniche in Portugal . Louis a crew member slotted the rat that tidy night.

We bought poison it wouldn’t touch it. We were on passage to the canaries and it got into the fresh fruit and vegetables . At night you could see it emerge in the red lights and scamper round . We kept the rubbish in the dinghy and it would jump out into the cockpit and leap across the davits into the dinghy to get to it we tried so hard to get rid of that rat . Finally in Arrecife we got a serious set of old fashioned traps . Baited them with fruit and late the first night in port we heard a very satisfactory snap . All three of us kept out of bed and saw the rat expire once the trap . No love was lost in that creature.
There is something intrinsically evil about a rat on ship. I detested it and the boat felt unclean until we had it dead and gone.
Now I always carry a trap and some poison . They are very clever creatures and not easy to get rid of .
Dick
Dick
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Nigel Studdart - 9/22/2020
Ah the sheer thought of a rat aboard sends shivers up my back . In 30 years only once last year did we get a rat . That was in Peniche in Portugal . Louis a crew member slotted the rat that tidy night. We bought poison it wouldn’t touch it. We were on passage to the canaries and it got into the fresh fruit and vegetables . At night you could see it emerge in the red lights and scamper round . We kept the rubbish in the dinghy and it would jump out into the cockpit and leap across the davits into the dinghy to get to it we tried so hard to get rid of that rat . Finally in Arrecife we got a serious set of old fashioned traps . Baited them with fruit and late the first night in port we heard a very satisfactory snap . All three of us kept out of bed and saw the rat expire once the trap . No love was lost in that creature.There is something intrinsically evil about a rat on ship. I detested it and the boat felt unclean until we had it dead and gone.Now I always carry a trap and some poison . They are very clever creatures and not easy to get rid of .

Hi Nigel,
Part of our “Mission Critical” gear is both a rat trap and a mouse trap and both got exercise. The rat trap was truly a scary piece of kit as it looked as if fingers would succumb to its jaws.
And yes, rats are no joke: I know boats whose wiring was chewed to where much did not work and fires were a danger, not to mention damage to hoses that let in water from the sea.
Good work, Dick

Daria Blackwell
Daria Blackwell
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We had traps aboard and also pest bombs or fumigators in case we picked up any insect vermin.  Of course, we were also sailing with a cat, so that helped. 

Vice Commodore, OCC 
Mark.Prior
Mark.Prior
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We picked up an unwelcome stowaway in Valencia. It took refuge somewhere in the fore cabin and chewed its way through oranges, bananas apples, cauliflower, melon, fizzy water bottles, plastic bags and flour. Fortunately it had no taste for electric cabling.
Rat and mouse poison and traps are easily available in Spain from ferreterias.They also sell a sticky goo which traps them but I thought this cruel.
Eventually Roland disappeared but whether due to poison or doing a runner to a better provisioned boat I am not sure.


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