Rats can be found almost anywhere. They are particularly
associated with sewers, rubbish and overgrown areas. They will
quickly locate neglected areas, and therefore can often be found in
wasteland, farmland and overgrown gardens. Rats also live in the
sewers, and although there is a routine treatment programme, it is
difficult to prevent them coming and going through damaged pipes.
They spread disease and cause damage to buildings.
Members of the public can take sensible precautions to discourage
rats. Properties are most vulnerable if they adjoin waste land, or
the countryside or if nearby sewers are defective. You
¨ Keep grass mown.
¨ Clear overgrown areas.
¨ Manage compost heaps.
¨ Clear any rubbish regularly.
¨ Ensure sewer pipework, manholes etc. are intact and
¨ Keep animal food in rodent-proof
¨ Remove pet animal waste regularly.
¨ Put household refuse straight into a bin.
If rats are found in a residential premises, then the Pest
Control service can be contacted on
The Council can carry out treatment. This will
involve identifying the cause of the infestation, and the areas
affected. The Pest Control Officer will lay baits in special
containers and in locations which are not accessible to children or
pets. For safety reasons, the bait used is a low-dose formulation,
and therefore the rats will need to be encouraged to eat lots of
it. Total eradication may therefore take some time, and the Pest
Control Officer may need to make several visits. You will be
provided with information relating to the bait, and safety measures
you should follow. For charges please click
The Pest Control Officer may identify that the cause of the
infestation is due to a problem with the property – for example,
accumulations of rubbish, or defective drainage. If this is the
case the Council will use its statutory powers to require the owner
or occupier to remedy the situation.