This winter there will be more rodents on farms because of the unusually hot, dry summer says pest control expert David Reece, technical adviser to Lodi UK, the UK’s leading manufacturer of pest control products. Food is a rodent’s number one priority, closely followed by somewhere to live, breed and raise young, so the arrival of cooler weather means that they’re heading indoors seeking shelter, warmth and nutrition. Be vigilant, because rodents can cause tremendous damage to stored crops, feedstuffs, buildings and machinery.
The cost of control is insignificant compared with potential losses, so monitor closely and take early action. The longer you leave it the more difficult, time consuming and expensive it becomes. If you don’t have the time or knowledge yourself then ask a specialist rural pest controller to visit your farm regularly.
If you see any sign of rodent activity use monitoring bait to confirm their presence. Lodi UV blocks or pastes are non-toxic and contain a substance that makes rodent urine glow under ultra-violet light for easy detection. If that’s positive take immediate action using proven methods, correct techniques and high-quality, fast-acting baits.
Many cheap, block-type baits are ineffective, so choose one of the latest products. A Bromadiolone-type bait, such as Lodi Jade, contains mulched cereals and peanut butter oils to encourage consumption, while Difenacoum-based Lodi Ruby is proven in difficult environments and Lodi Sapphire, a Brodifacoum-based bait, will kill rodents in a single feed.
The new European rodenticide regulations limit the sale and use of professional-strength products containing 50 parts per million (ppm) of anticoagulant rodenticide active substance to individuals who hold a CRRU-approved certificate or farming businesses that belongs to a CRRU-approved Farm Assured scheme.
Without the correct paperwork you will be limited to products containing <30ppm of anticoagulant rodenticide active substances, in maximum packs of 150g for grain and paste baits, 300g for block baits. Lodi UK have introduced packs containing pouches of specially-formulated bait which incorporate 0.0025% (25ppm) of active ingredient, Ruby Block 25 and Ruby Grain 25, Jade Grain 25, Sapphire Paste 25 and Sapphire Grain 25.
Be proactive against rodents:
- Make it difficult for them to get into buildings by repairing any gaps and control those that do get in.
- Keep the doors of farm buildings closed where possible.
- Keep feed stores clean and tidy.
- Clean up spilt feed.
- Monitor rodent activity around straw stacks and silage clamps.
- Create a clear zone around buildings where possible. Clean up clutter, keep grass short and clear vegetation.
- Continually monitor for signs of rodents, such as droppings, urine, rub/tail marks, tracks, damage to insulation and unusual smells.
- Thoroughly clean machinery which has been in contact with grain.
- Store bedding separately from feed.
- Check electrical wiring for damage.
- Position bait containers adjacent to outside walls before baiting begins so they become familiar. Inside, place bait boxes where there are signs of activity, or rodents are likely to track. Check, and re-fill until fresh activity ceases.
- Burrow baiting is very effective against rats and reduces the risk to non-target species.
Further information from Lodi UK on 01384 404242 or www.lodi-uk.comk
Use one of the latest rodenticide products to ensure rodents consume a lethal dose.