Eradication of Norway Rats on Canna Island - page 2


A three year program to eradicate rats from Canna and Sanday SPA is underway. Peter Dunlevy and Steve Ebbert visited Canna during late March and early February 2006. These are my photos from that trip. To learn more about the project, see: National Trust for Scotland website
Click on any photo to see enlarged version.

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Biz was very impressed with the diphacinone bait. Bait acceptance was excellent and lasted well. Bait take was higher on the cliffs and slopes (coastal areas) where rat populations were concentrated.
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All offshore rocks and stacks were treated. Only some smaller and steeper offshore rocks did not have rats. Norway rats first escaped to Canna from ferry traffic a century or more ago. Quarantine procedures prevent rats from escaping on the island today.
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Monkey melting chocolate for rat indicator baits. Monitoring bait consisted of chocolate flavored wax blocks, made of melted candles and cocoa. They were placed between existing bait stations on a chew stick held together by wire. These non-toxic attractors were designed for rats to give away their presence.
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Chocolate/wax blocks helped the team identify pockets of rat activity by attracting any rats that were wary of entering a bait station. Biz and company examine tooth marks left on bait and indicators to determine if rats still persist. Monkey sits by bait stations which will be permantly placed at the pier. Inside each box are 2 traps, chocolate wax block and soap to attract any rat coming ashore from a berthed ship.

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Last updated: 12/16/06