Rat attack...

Dear Martin

I have a rat in the garden.  Can you advise whether it is going to prove a problem to my vegetable bed?   I am organic and so have a number of bird feeding stations in the garden to encourage the birds into the garden to feed on pests.  This is what I believe encouraged it to lodge in our garden in the first place; clearing up after the birds and my nice warm compost heep!   I am loathed to call the rat man in to poison it.  

Can you please advise.  

Many thanks  


Dear Vivienne

Many thanks for your recent enquiry regarding the rat which has decide to lodge in your garden. As you say, it’s probably the bird food/seed and compost heap which has attracted the squatter and hopefully, they will be happy feeding on this readily available source.  

I’ve not had any first hand experience of rats in our Harrod Horticultural Kitchen Garden – mice yes, but not rats – so it’s hard to comment whether your new-found rodent friend will cause problems in the vegetable patch. I do know that brown rats – and I’m assuming this is the species living in your garden – are omnivores and will eat meat as well as vegetables, but I would have thought that as long as other food is on hand, you shouldn’t have too many problems.  

Alternatively, you could try to run the rat out of town by careful management of your compost heap (keep meat free) and bird feeding stations (no excess food) or even capture it unharmed with our Humane Rat Cage if you don’t want to run the risk of gnawed vegetables. You could even try the Outdoor Pest Stop Ultrasonic Repeller and rely on a blast of ultrasound to keep his greedy little paws off your veg patch!  

Hopefully this information will prove to be of some help with this rather unusual problem, and best wishes for the future – to both you and the rat!