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This forum is dedicated to the discussion of growing pome fruits, including apples, pears and other pome fruits, discuss varieties and how to store, prepare and process pome fruits.

tree rats eating fruit trees in suburbia

Postby Nicolafig » Fri Jun 17, 2011 5:46 pm

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Does anyone have trouble with tree rats? They are finally coming down and eating apple, plum and persimmon trees and also the roses and ceanothus. It's truly getting out of hand. Do you find the county will remove a nest high up in the trees. There's one way high up in the acaia canopy above my garden. Help help.

Re: tree rats eating fruit trees in suburbia

Postby Axel » Fri Jun 17, 2011 6:48 pm

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It's quite easy to deal with, buy solid poison bait and climb the tree and use duct tape to tie bait on the branches around the nest. Then wait for the bait to get eaten and then wait another couple of weeks. Then remove the nests.

I had a major problem (5 nests and major grafts eaten) and followed this approach. It's what Santa Cruz county health recommended, and it worked very well.

Re: tree rats eating fruit trees in suburbia

Postby Nicolafig » Fri Jun 17, 2011 7:07 pm

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wow. thankyou so much. I am devastated by the inroads they have made to everything in the past 3 weeks. Tonight was the past straw having eaten my prized espalier apple tree OVER NIGHT ! I have netted tonight---------and will plan to take your advice asap. There's a wapping nest about 50 feet up the acaia. Thanks again

Re: tree rats eating fruit trees in suburbia

Postby Axel » Fri Jun 17, 2011 9:07 pm

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They use the branches to build their nest. They can do quits a bit of damage. Good to bait regularly to control the population. They have no more predators.

Re: tree rats eating fruit trees in suburbia

Postby epitree » Sat Jun 18, 2011 8:59 pm

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Not rats but australian possums that do the damage here second pic looks like something out of Gremlins :lol:
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Re: tree rats eating fruit trees in suburbia

Postby Nicolafig » Sat Jun 18, 2011 11:30 pm

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are you serious! in Santa Cruz!!. Well when I set a few traps I will certainly see. I am going to approach the county as the nest sits 50 - 60' up the acaia which has no lateral branches to climb up. Fortunately it's canopy i s top heavy and lurching towards the power line, so they might consider working with me to get rid of the rats and take this tree down to a lower manageable level. More later. Whoever it ISBN: also dug up my potatoes last night and ate them . This has become WAR.

Re: tree rats eating fruit trees in suburbia

Postby Axel » Mon Jun 20, 2011 4:20 pm

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Epitree lives in New Zealand. We also have possums, surely related as they are all marsupials.

You don't have to climb the entire 60 feet to get to the nest. The bait can be taped to the trunk only 5 feet above the ground. The tree rats have to climb up and down anyway, they will encounter the bait and take it into their nest to eat.

The county will not trim your trees nor remove your rat nest. But if you bring the county in, they may force you to do it yourself, then you will be forced to hire someone to do it for you if you don't want to do it yourself.

Tree rats are capable of eating your potatoes. They go after everything.

Re: tree rats eating fruit trees in suburbia

Postby Nicolafig » Mon Jun 20, 2011 7:00 pm

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the county was pretty helpful and coming out. The trees are actually on the right of way of the train track behind my house. THanks for all the tips. Just learning about anti-coagulent baits today. Also in the Hort dept where I work in a garden at Cabrillo, we had rats come after our new apple tree, so there's a spring trap set up. Rats are quite the topic of conversation right now. The more I bring it up, the more people confess their hassle with them. I am not alone. The tree trimmers today told me there are ground nests too on the ROW.So they are wood rats.

Re: tree rats eating fruit trees in suburbia

Postby Rasmussj » Fri Jul 08, 2011 4:01 am

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I have found that a couple of bait stations and snap traps keep the population in check. I catch a couple of month, when I first put out bait and traps I catchire and go through more bait, and then it tapers down.

Re: tree rats eating fruit trees in suburbia

Postby Nicolafig » Fri Jul 08, 2011 9:24 am

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i have cleaned up the duff on the ground I had created from 'chop & drop' permaculture mulching style. That taught me a lesson big time. I had bins and bins of twigs and general over-growth that I cut back also along the fences. I had created much safe-harbor for them. The county i s coming to top the 60' acaia where the huge nest is. I think that it's co-incidence as the tree leans over the powerline. I have begged them to bait first----or all the little darlings will run my way!!! I am learning a lot.Also people fess up about rats when you talk about them!

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