Pest Control News

Saturday, 10 December 2016

Could Rats Become Less of a Problem?

Could Rats Become Less of a Problem?
There are many pests that cause farmers and landowners to worry about their crops and land – rats and rabbits are just two pests that are considered rampant in the country side.
Both cause an incredibly amount of damage in a short time. Rabbits can make the ground unstable with their constant burrowing, and rats on farms can damage crops, as well as contaminate food stores. 
Damage is not only vast but costly. But there may another solution on the horizon to those measures that farmers, landowners and pest controllers already take – a fence of ‘laser beams’.
Successful trial
Scientists at John Moores Liverpool University have successfully trialled a fence of laser light in Scotland, the Netherlands and Spain. The laser fence seems to frighten the rats and other pests too, forming an environmentally friendly alternative to poison. 
Funded by the European Commission, bodies like the National Farmers’ Union are hoping that its widespread use could save thousands of pounds each year in damaged crops and food stuff. The fence of laser lights could also be effective with foxes, birds, rabbits and badgers. 
Secondary poisoning
The pest control industry has been working in recent years to lessen the impact of the use of poisons on non-targeted species. And this laser could be a major contribution to stopping the deaths of many other species, especially birds, who succumb to second-hand poisoning.
When bait is laid for pests, such as rat poison, the rat does not die immediately on eating it. It may reach several metres away from the original spot. Its carcass however, is still full of poison and a bird flying overhead will spot what they think is a ready-made snack. Unfortunately, they too will be poisoned. 
There is now measures in place for widespread and consistent baiting to be stopped, and pest control technicians will also return to the area to collect carcasses to prevent secondary poisoning of birds and other species. 
With sales on poisons also being tightened, it is hoped that unintended poisoning of non-target wildlife will significantly decrease. There is no doubt that this laser fence would also contribute to this too. 
An urban problem
Rats, foxes and rabbits are not just an issue in the countryside – they can present significant issues in the urban setting too.
Rabbits confuse industrial plants for safe burrows and tunnels, or their tunnels on embankments can lead to landslide problems for both the road networks and rail lines across the country. 
Foxes have learnt to live alongside humans in the city and the town, a trade-off for the ready supply of food that they find in bins and recycling containers. 
Rats are also a common sight in may urban settings, again as a result of having a ready supply of food and nesting sites. 
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