Saturday, August 28, 2010


Well, this sad saga continues. Last night at about 11:00 my parochial vicar, Fr. Justin went to the kitchen to get a snack. He went into a walk-in pantry and was rooting about. After about a minute, he noticed something moving rather quickly on the third shelf, about five feet from the floor. He turned toward it, only to have one of our rats jump toward him to get to the floor and escape. He (the rat, not Fr. Justin) had opened a package of cereal or something and was storing some of it in the corner of this shelf. Fr. Justin threw a full bag of sugar at it, but it got away.

Never mind, that the night before I had put two small potato chips in the middle of the kitchen floor to see if the rat was still around and he ate them (the rat, not Fr. Justin, at least I don't think Fr. Justin ate them). So last night I put two potato chips in the same place, but on a sticky board for him to get stuck and die like a rat, (the rat, not Fr. Justin). But no, the rat does not take the bait! Traps galore, but he's too smart (the rat, not Fr. Justin).

We've named this rat "Ben" and if there is an accomplice, the other one "Sacrotees."

Fr. Justin now says he's afraid to go to the kitchen (Fr. Justin, not the rat). So am I! What to do; what to do????????

I don't think a cat will help with this, just a match!


Marc said...

I feel bad for you all having to live with a rat, but he does make for hilarious blog posts (the rat, not Fr. Justin)!

anna said...

Only resort to poison as a last resort. Had a rat take the bait but die in the wall. it was horrific, the stench lasted forever.
Use traps. Lots of them. The cage types as well as the grabbers. You can bait them at first without setting them to get them lulled into thinking it is a feeding station. Rub a slight coating of bacon grease or peanut butter on the parts you have handled to throw off the human scent. Have a company come out that will close off all entry points. Until the entrances are closed off they will just keep coming and going. Think high, they will come off of power lines and trees next to the roofline. Take all cereal and food that comes in boxes and soft packaging and transfer them to glass or plastic containers.
Maybe you could borrow a barn cat? They are used to mousing, many of our home-raised cats are terrible mousers, I'm told that it is a learned skill. On the other hand, a good ratting dog is magnificant, after all, it is his destiny and what he was bred for. Rat terrier, jack russel, a terrier with a high prey drive.

Good luck. I'm praying for all of you.

Anonymous said...

this should become a cartoon strip! too funny (although I am sure you all are not too amused by it). But seriously ... remove ALL the food from everywhere, move out, pay some well known exterminator to come get rid of the pesky creatures, and then move back in. How long could it take? One week? I am sure your neighboring brother priests can house you up for some time.

Anonymous said...

Depends on the cat. One of the kittens I am trying to relocate is a young male who is only four months old. He has already dispatched a squirrel and several rabbits from our garden.

I had a cat that survived a substantial amount of my military career who is likely now perched on St Micheal's lap. When we relocated to a new base he would take it upon himself to cleanse the vermin. It was a sort of Passover Rodenta with squeaking all night long the first few days. He would leave his mark upon the lentil, or doorstep, for me the next morning.

Reminded me of the motto of the Texas Rangers, "One Riot, One Ranger".


Althea Gardner said...

I laughed out loud reading this! Fr. Justin told me the story this weekend, but your version is hilarious. I hate that you guys have to put up with this. Tell Fr. Justin to get a real gun & put the Nerf gun away. It will just make the rat mad!

Anonymous said...

And you will notice that the fair Althea has befriended a CAT.

It is no coincidence she is also expert of the habits and attitudes of rats.

I will deliver the cat.


NostalgicMeditations said...

In our experience the sticky pads are almost useless for large rats and the old spring traps only work about half the time- I have seen some rats with their head stuck in actually live and extricate them selves from the old traps. Mice can squeeze through a 1/2 in and rats are similar. Since you have a roach problem you will have start sealing all you food in sealable rigid containers containers (Tupper ware should work) and keeping the garbage outside some distance from the rectory. Are any nearby buildings dealing with food stuffs (ie stores, etc) or do your neighbors have the same problems? If so and they are very close to the rectory the problem will probably not go away until it is addressed there as those places from a base for them. Odds are the construction didn't bring more rats in but disturbed the ones there already. When old ships sink all the rats in the hold come out- as their habitat is disturbed- hundreds to thousands of them. The root of the problem might be older than you think if there was an old nest. However as the nest has been disposed of the good news is they probably haven't had time to build a large new one and thus the mites, etc should not be an issue. If so then so long as the problem is addressed soon you might not have to bother with insecticide. Obviously all openings to the house- large small, etc be be solidly blocked off. Up North here it must be done before winter- not sure about down there.

Yes cats can possibly work well but you may need one inside and outside. Also they must be taken care of- read litterbox if kept in doors. I like cats myself but my preference is the newer versions of the Rat Zapper when there are not tons of them. It is the easiest and simplest to use. I hope it all works out for you Father whatever you do. God bless.