Rats, how do you discourage them?

I live in quite a rural area, good size garden, but i do have neighbours.  I feed the birds, but a rat has appeared.  To be honest it sode not bother me, but i don't want my neighbours to be worried.

Any suggestions how to discourage them and can anyone suggest bird feeders that catch the seed as the birds eat?

Thank you


  • The usual advice is to not put food out for 2 weeks. The rats will move on if the regular food supply disappears. How much rat-free time this will give you depends on how prevalent the rats are in the area but it usually works for a reasonable amount of time.

    This is a TRAY that fits some RSPB seed feeders. Some birds like Goldfinches still throw food around but it does reduce the amount that falls to the floor.


    Nige   Flickr

  • Hi Margaret, I recently made a seed catcher similar to the one Nigel linked by using an old frisby (I can post a photo tomorrow) but as he said, seed still ends up on the floor. You could try catching the rat - I humanely caught 6 last year but only 1 this year (https://youtu.be/K4DwL_VtdLQ) and released it 2 plus miles away. I will admit that I caught the wild hedgehogs on numerous occasions when it was on the ground but released them unharmed the next day, Ive also caught numerous birds so you are not guaranteed to get the rat, but it might be worth a try.

    Good Luck

    YouTube Channel:

    New Flickr Account