How to Kill Field Rats

If not removed from your property in a timely manner, field rats can wreak havoc on your garden, home and health. According to the University of California Statewide Integrated Pest Management Program, rats eat and contaminate food, garden produce and fruit, and transmit diseases to humans and pets. Removing field rats from your property with the use of snap traps is a must if you want to ensure that your property and health stay in the best condition possible.

Field rats carry a wide array of harmful diseases.

Step 1

Remove all garbage, tall grass, weeds, old boards and woodpiles from your yard. Field rats thrive in yards that are overgrown and riddled with trash.

Step 2

Seal all small holes or openings on your property with 1/4-inch steel mesh wire or caulking. The University of California Statewide Integrated Pest Management Program recommends sealing all 1/4-inch (or larger) cracks and openings in your house's foundation immediately to prevent the rodents from entering and destroying your property.

Step 3

Place multiple snap traps against your walls, in dark corners and in areas where you've noticed recent rodent activity in your home. Rat droppings and gnaw marks are signs of rat infestation. The University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences recommends setting the traps with the bait treadle at a right angle to the wall. Place cheese or peanut butter on the trap to lure the rodents into the traps.

Step 4

Place multiple snap traps outdoors in areas where field rats regularly congregate. Field rats thrive in wood and compost piles, near trash cans and storage buildings, and under rocks, so place the snap traps in these areas. Put cheese or peanut butter on the traps as bait.

Step 5

Check the traps at dawn and dusk when field rats are most active. Move the traps to different locations every few days if you're not successfully catching and killing the pests.

Step 6

Place sanitary gloves on your hands and throw the snap trap, containing the dead rodent, into a secure plastic bag. Burn it, bury it or throw it into your garbage can. Set new snap traps out on a regular basis until you've successfully reduced or killed all field rats destroying your property.

Brittany Tucker

Brittany Tucker began a freelance writing career in 2008. She specializes in home and garden topics, and her work has appeared on a variety of websites. Tucker studied English literature at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College.