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If you’re all about humane rat removal, live exclusion is the answer for you, and the best way to approach this method is through one-way exclusion funnels. You also have the alternative of a one-way door live exclusion cage, but you’ll have a better chance with the exclusion funnel.
When using a one-way exclusion funnel for capturing a rat, you first need to identify and seal shut any points of access the rats might use to get in and out, except for a main entrance. Then, install the exclusion funnel at that main entrance and exit point. The rat will not be harmed, it will be able to enter the funnel easily and, ideally, it won’t be able to get out. You can then further move on to releasing the rat somewhere away from your house.
In the interest of being perfectly clear, I do not recommend, nor do I use one-exclusion funnels when dealing with rats or mice. I’ve always believed in and have been an advocate for treating animals with care and respect, and I practice this belief also when it comes to rats. That being said, I feel it’s more humane to use a lethal snap trap instead of glue traps or poison when talking about rat removal, and I have a handful of reasons why I prefer lethal snap traps to one-way exclusion funnels or cage traps.
First off, exclusion funnels don’t have that big of a success rate. Rats vary in size depending on their age, and chances are that they will be able to escape the funnel. Also, rats are pretty cautious, and while you have higher chances of live trapping them in one-way exclusion funnels than with a one-way door, the odds of catching all the rats that are causing you trouble are still kind of high. If you catch a rat with a one-way exclusion funnel, the next step would be to release it far away from your home. It’s very likely that you’re evacuating that rat from the only habitat it’s known for its entire short life, thus making that life even shorter by sending the rat to what will probably turn out to be a painful and violent death. Yes, the rat will most certainly die when uprooted from its only known environment. Factors that guarantee this death are competition from other rats, predators, and starvation. Rats reproduce at a ridiculous high rate, and their natural lifespan is already very low, few rats living more than a year. So, to catch a rat without trapping or hurting it is pretty useless, I would say. I can understand wanting to have a clear conscience and all that, but you’re not saving the rat, you’re just sending it to a rough death instead of doing the humane thing by killing it instantly.
I strongly suggest you consult my nationwide directory of vermin control experts before going ahead and improvising, or before hiring whatever exterminator company that’s the cheapest, and that will approach your rat problem with poison or other ineffective and cruel methods that will not solve the issue. For more information, you may want to click on one of these guides that I wrote:
How much does rat removal cost? - get the lowdown on prices.
How to get rid of rats - my main rat removal info guide.
Example rat trapping photographs - get do-it-yourself ideas.
Rat job blog - learn from great examples of rat jobs I've done.