Hello and welcome to The Compost Bin. I'm Compostwoman and I live with my family in rural Herefordshire. We have nearly four acres of garden and woodland, all managed organically and to Permaculture principles, which we share with Chickens, Cats and assorted wildlife. We also grow a lot of our own food, run courses in all sorts of things and make a lot of compost!

I am a Master Composter and have spent more than a decade as a volunteer Community Compost adviser with Garden Organic and my local Council.
I'm a self employed Environmental Educator so I run workshops and events where I talk about compost, veg growing, chicken keeping, cooking, preserving and sustainable living. I also run crafts workshops and Forest School/outdoor play sessions in our wood.

We try to live a more self sufficient lifestyle here, as best we can, while still having a comfortable life and lots of fun.

To learn more about us click on the About Compostwoman tab and remember to click on the photos to make them full size!

Thursday 2 April 2020

Rats ( again!)

I keep getting asked questions about Rats , on Facebook,on  the various fora I frequent, when I was on Compost stands and when I am out and about ( before the start of the social isolating against Covid -19)  so I thought I would  repeat my advice in one place on here.

So here are some tricks you can try if your compost bin is infested with rats.

1. Get some metal mesh..chicken wire would do or weldmesh sold by builders yards...and put it on the ground under your bin so that the whole of the base area is covered then resite the bin on top.

2. Make sure you go to your bin at least every day and hit it with a stick or give it a kick...just to disturb it! Rats are neophobic..they don't like anything new..and they don't like being disturbed...ideally resite your bin so it is close to the house and where it gets walked past a lot...

3. Keep the lid on the bin...

4. Rinse out any eggshells before adding them to the bin as Rats LOVE the smell of egg....

5. It is said male urine acts as a deterrent...and wee is also a good compost activator...

6. Dog wee around the outside of the bin would work, too!!

7. If you have a dog then that might help scare them off

Very important, whatever you do...wear gloves when handling the compost bin or the composting stuff...rats urine can carry Weils disease ( and other nasties!!) and if you get wet wee on a cut you can catch all sorts of unpleasant illnesses.....so obviously plasters on any cuts is a must, too.

They are a huge problem at the moment everywhere I am afraid.

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