How to remove rats from inside a wall
Rats can make a home of your attics, your kitchens, and your sheds. However, they can also find a way into your walls and make a home there too. Most modern housing holds cavities within their walls, for insulation, wiring and so on, but once rats find their way in there, it can be a real task trying to get them out again, because you’ll have to get a hole in the wall to get those pests out. They can use the insides of your walls, either as a passageway for them to get to and from where they are going, or using the wall itself as a nest. Most of the time, the rat has found a way into the wall, and can’t get out. This happens most likely because they’ve fallen into the wall cavity from the attic, but a lot of other ways are equally possible. They can make a lot of noise looking for ways out or travelling, like pattering or scratches and biting, which can give away from their position.
Because rats are very flexible, they can compress their body into a very small radius. This makes it very easy for them to get into small spaces. Looking for entry points, you will have to pay very close attention to any possible holes, as rats can get into areas about half an inch wide. If any of the scratching sounds are close to the ground, it may be that there is an entry point nearby and close to the ground. In many cases, a broken vent can be the entry point for the animal, and this can be a giveaway as the sound may be heard from the exit of the vent. You can look for physical signs also, as rats may leave droppings in their pathways, which can make it easier to track their locations.
Rats stuck in the wall
The rat will rarely stay inside of the wall cavity that it finds or falls into, as they are not convenient places to live. However, if they happened to fall into the wall, or if they don’t know their way out, their scratching can get more persistent and louder as time goes on. If they can’t find food, they’ll begin panicking, and scratching violently to get out can be a sign of that.
If this is the case, you may have to get this rat out of the wall manually. There may be open spaces to look into the top of a wall cavity, especially in the upstairs walls where they may be viewed from the attic.
You can get a snare pole or something similar and lift the rat out of the wall this way. However, if finding an opening isn’t possible, you may have to cut a small hole into the base of the wall in order for the rat to get out. It mustn’t escape though, and it is advised that you use a live-cage trap along with this method, so that once the wall is open, the cage covers the hole.
However, the rats could be moving through the cavity constantly! This is different, as it implies that the rats are passing though from another location. For this, you will have to spend more time trying to find both entry and exit points. The most common way to deal with this issue is by trapping the rats for prolonged periods of time, making sure that you’ve caught every single one going through there. Then, seal the points of entry well when you’re confident that no more rats are present.
There are multiple traps that can help in stopping rats in the area. As earlier mentioned, live traps can be useful for blocking entrance holes. However, snap traps can be an easy and fast alternative to this. Lures can be placed on these traps, and multiple traps can be set at once at the entrance to increase the chance of catching rats. Just place some bait, like peanut butter, on top of the trap to lure out rodents. Body grip traps can also catch rodents from next to the entrance holes, but they will have to be reset very often and it can be slower catching all of the rats. Be careful when moving cages, washing them often, and always wear a mask and gloves to move rat-traps with dead rats in them.
Dead rats in the wall
What if there are dead rats in the wall-space? This can be common, and it’s as a result of the rats we spoke of earlier, that can’t seem to find their way out. The indication of this can be a foul smell. This smell can attract other rodents, so you may have to get rid of it as soon as possible. You can do this with a grab-stick from the top of the wall cavity like earlier stated, or you may have to try to find a vent, or cut a hole, in order to get the carcass from the wall. Make sure you don’t have any direct contact with the body, and stay as clean as possible, tying up the carcass in more than one bag to conceal the smell and so it is properly disposed of.
Lastly, to stop this happening in the future, take the time to properly conceal the exterior of your house, the attic, and make sure that any skirting on your walls is fully sealed. Also, check to vent for any holes or tearing, as this is a common way for rodents to get in. Spend quite some time rodent-proofing your house, as it’s something you won’t want to think about often. We wish you the best of luck with this and don’t be afraid to seek professional wildlife control if you don’t feel comfortable with this.