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Curtism
08-12-2010, 02:08 PM
Years ago I worked at an old boat plant with a rat problem. Our sixty foot layout loft was located beneath a second floor storage where they kept bolts of outdated upholstery fabric and old boat show booths, banners, brochures and whatnot. It was dark up there, hot, dusty and a perfect habitat for rodents so, naturally, they thrived.

One memorable morning we had a close encounter between one of the guys and a two footer. At one end of the upper level there was a small office that was occupied by a couple of production engineers and there was a rustling in the trash can next to one of the guys’ drawing boards. According to eyewitnesses the large man, 6’4” with full beard and a tattooed sleeve, got on top of his desk, on all fours, and screeched like a schoolgirl when the rat jumped out of the bin. I was downstairs and heard the shouting through my ceiling, followed by a door slamming and heavy footsteps pounding down wooden stairs. The startled guy stormed through my work area, his face red as his beard as he spat expletives aloud. We later learned that he’d gone to have a rather indignant discussion with the director of plant maintenance, yet another of the many chats concerning the ongoing problem. Later that day a stealthy maintenance man left two large Victor rat traps on the engineers desk as a sort of truce offering.

The gesture was ill-received and ended up being the inspiration for the Wheel of Misfortune.



http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx259/curtismil/WheeloMisfedit.jpg?t=1281639520


The rules of rat roulette were simple: Players selected a lucky number, paid their ante and baited their own traps at shifts end each Friday. The administrator would then cock all the traps before leaving for the weekend and come Monday, it was winner take all. After the director of engineering, the CEO’s son, bought a number on the wheel, word got around. Maintenance eventually got the hint and took steps to correct the problem.



Curtis

bobbys
08-12-2010, 02:21 PM
Had some move in the woodshed, Used the newer traps which never miss.

I have the regular ones that get tripped with no rat unless another rat eats the phantom rat.

At any rate the bait is gone..

I screw the traps on a fence board so i can stick it in further and they do not run off with the trap..

Peanut butter seems to draw them in , Creamy Skippy honey roast performs best, Well at least the jar i used and forgot if i put the spoon back in after using it to bait with.

Paul Pless
08-12-2010, 02:30 PM
glue traps rule

Domesticated_Mr. Know It All
08-12-2010, 02:38 PM
Cats eat rats.

http://rubmint.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-o-matic/cache/7714c_funny-pictures-rat-asks-to-be-eaten.jpg

goodbasil
08-12-2010, 02:45 PM
Glue traps are cruel.

peter radclyffe
08-12-2010, 02:48 PM
in cornwall in a pub cellar, a guy got some beer bottles that had been there a while, he ignored advice to wash the bottles because of weills disease, he drank out of the bottles
and died

bobbys
08-12-2010, 03:08 PM
glue traps rule.

I have one but never set it, Seems like the rat would just die of thirst or starvation after awhile, Plus i would have to kill it with my .357

Tristan
08-12-2010, 03:38 PM
.

Plus i would have to kill it with my .357

Yeah, but if you only wound it you have to worry about it attacking you. They WILL attack when wounded!

Paul Pless
08-12-2010, 03:42 PM
.

I have one but never set it, Seems like the rat would just die of thirst or starvation after awhile, Plus i would have to kill it with my .357they pretty much stick their nose in the glue and suffocate

bobbys
08-12-2010, 03:58 PM
they pretty much stick their nose in the glue and suffocate.

OK did not know that, I have some sweet mole traps i may design for rats, I read where guys use shotgun shells like a booby trap for moles but pretty sure i would shoot myself.

Ed Harrow
08-12-2010, 03:59 PM
Cats eat rats.

My father used to tell a story about a friend with about the biggest Maine Coon cat Dad had ever seen. They were somewhere and a rat was discovered in a barrel. "No problem." The guy tossed in his cat, put a lid on the barrel, and when it had gone quiet he took the lid off. The rat jumped out.

bobbys
08-12-2010, 04:02 PM
My father used to tell a story about a friend with about the biggest Maine Coon cat Dad had ever seen. They were somewhere and a rat was discovered in a barrel. "No problem." The guy tossed in his cat, put a lid on the barrel, and when it had gone quiet he took the lid off. The rat jumped out..

The neighbor cat kills rats then eats just the tail, Sorta Of a refined taste i guess

Michael D. Storey
08-12-2010, 04:34 PM
Ever notice that when you have mice, you have no rats?

John of Phoenix
08-12-2010, 05:25 PM
VC rat.

At our main base, we lived in large tents that were surrounded by used artillery powder canisters filled with dirt to protect us during mortar attacks. The tents were in pretty good shape but they were tents - open at the bottom - and critters large and small came and went at will. Inside, we divided the large area into two man rooms by breaking down wooden rocket ammo boxes and constructing 8x10 cubicles. In the "rooms" each pilot had a gym type locker to secure flight gear and weapons, a bed with mosquito net, a fan and maybe a small fridge if you could buy one from someone going home. Cozy as could be had given the situation.

It was my first night back from my stint in the field for my two days off, and having enjoyed a good time and a case of beer at the O'club, I stumbled into bed around midnight. Around two, there was blood curdling scream from the room next to mine. My first thought was SAPPERS!! I rolled out of bed onto the floor and scrambled to my locker to get my weapon. Another scream!

"AHHH! YOU MOTHER F^<&ER!!" BAM BAM... two shots from a .45...a pause, then BAM BAM BAM. "GOT THAT SON OF A BITCH!!"
Coarsely I whispered, "LYNN?! Are you ok?"
"Yeah! Jesus Christ that scared the hell out of me!"
I had my pistol cocked as I crouched outside his door. "Lynn, it's me. I'm coming in ok? Don't shoot."
"Yeah, come on in."
I pushed the door open and he turned on the lamp. I covered the tiny room with my pistol, expecting to see the body of a stripped to skivies VC sapper lying in a pool of blood. Nothing.
"Lynn, where is he? You said you got him. Where'd he go?"
"Under the tent flap I guess. Jesus! Yeah, I got his ass alright. Twice. ****, I'm shaking so bad. Like a godamned sissy school girl." He laughed and reached to get a beer out of his fridge, the cocked .45 still in his hand.
About this time people are running around yelling "What's goin' on?" "Who fired those shots?"
"IN HERE!" I yell and in a flash there's half a dozen guys brandishing all sorts of weapons crowded in the door and hallway.
Our operations officer takes charge. "Jones, Teetsel, what's the hell's going on?"
I was taking a breath, about to tell them about the wounded sapper who slithered out under the tent flap when Lynn says, "That was the biggest fu<%ing rat I've ever seen. I was asleep and he jumped on my chest. Scared the crap out me but I got his ass. Look." He pointed to a blood trail leading behind his fridge.
"A RAT?? You blew half a clip at a goddamned RAT?" I yelled.
"You should have SEEN that thing!"
"YOU COULD HAVE KILLED ME YOU JACKASS!"
"You should have SEEN that thing!"
<Peals of laughter>

JayInOz
08-12-2010, 07:49 PM
I like rats- so do my pythons :d Instead of common old rat traps, maybe you could modify one of these?-
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kBb7KReY6Eg or these

http://www.break.com/usercontent/2007/3/20/squirrel-launcher-253221

:d JayInOz

purri
08-12-2010, 07:57 PM
Gotta love the python! We called ours Monty.

The Bigfella
08-12-2010, 08:11 PM
I reckon I saw more rats on my Vietnam trip than I've seen in the rest of my life. Brazen buggers are everywhere. I only saw them on the menu once though.. up in the mountains, listed as "bamboo rat". I'd already ordered the deer when I spotted it, otherwise I'd have tried it. I did eat cat up there... and that wasn't too bad.

I watched a good battle between a couple of skinny cats and a pair of rats... one huge... in a restaurant in Da Nang. The cats didn't get anywhere near the rats... they were too damn quick.

As for the local rats... with an aviary and a duck in the back yard, we get them. I "ratsak'd" the roof again last weekend. Noisy buggers.

Curtism
08-13-2010, 05:37 AM
Peanut butter seems to draw them in , Creamy Skippy honey roast performs best, Well at least the jar i used and forgot if i put the spoon back in after using it to bait with.

When the wheel first started the guys were bringing in Grandma’s sure-fire recipes for rat bait. The results of trial and error proved peanut butter to be a string contender, along with honey smattered on just about anything imaginable. Three or four times the rats won by cleaning every trigger, all 20 of ‘em, and only setting off a couple, I guess out of good sportsmanship. In this case the pot would roll over. Once we discovered wrapping whatever concoction and the trigger with a strip of ladies hosiery, the thieving came to a halt and we had guys splitting the pot.

Gummy bears smushed onto the trigger and wrapped with light mono filament turned out to be a top contender. Raw bacon tied on with thin wire and singed with a cigarette lighter was a pretty good performer also.



(urtis

Curtism
08-13-2010, 05:41 AM
That VC rat is a great story, John, and well told. It brings to mind tales dad told about Korea and guys getting spooked by four legged locals. Relatives and friends from the Nam era had similar stories and they always seem to relive a little of that adrenaline rush when they relate such events. It even comes through a little in your post here.



(urtis

McMike
08-13-2010, 06:18 AM
VC Rats = Great stroy. Thanks John.

Joe Dupere
08-13-2010, 07:18 AM
We've got rats in the fields around the house. They've been getting into the compost pile and also digging up the carrots in the garden. Finally got around to setting traps and nabbed one. We were using the Victor traps, and it
didn't quite kill it. I had to shoot it to finish the job. A little while later I saw another running across the yard into the tall grass. We really need to get a barn cat.

Joe, FFPoP

knottyBuoyz
08-13-2010, 07:39 AM
In the early 80's we were in drydock getting the first epoxy hull coating (Interta 160) used in our fleet (CCG). During the prep of the hull, sandblasting, we had a skeleton crew onboard. One of the crew members was the ships cat, Bear. One day the biggest boatyard rat I ever saw moved into the gap in the main cargo hold hatch. The bosun's mate, and owner of Bear, sent him out to deal with the rat problem. Bear came back all beaten up, bleeding and scarred. A quick trip to the vet and $200 later Bear was resting comfortably in the rope locker.

The senior engineer decided it was time to deal with the rat problem by throwing some good ole' old fashioned ingenuity into the problem. He devised what we now call "The Rat Cannon". It was something like this. A 4" dia by 6' length of sch 40 pipe bent into a gentle curve. Runners of 1" angle iron welded to the pipe like rockers on a rocking chair. A flapper door with spring catch. The opposite end of the pipe was welded shut with a cover. Getting the picture? In the breach end of the pipe a hole was drilled and tapped for a 12 volt spark plug and another vent hole a few inches away.

The idea was the trap was set with the flap door open and bait inside. The rat would enter the pipe and as he crawled up the pipe to get the bait the pipe would rocker up and the flap door would close trapping the rat inside. I think you can see where I'm going here eh?

Once the rat was caught the engineer would partially fill the pipe with oxy/acetylene and plug the vent hole. Then he rigged a 12 volt battery with a high voltage ign coil. A trigger switch and "Kaboom"! :D

The first time the Rat Cannon was fired it was less than spectacular. The rat did exit the cannon at moderate velocity but it didn't carry him over the gunnels. The engineer figured we had to optimize the oxy/acetylene mix and after a few trials he had it dialed in. All we needed was another rat.

It was one particularly hot long weekend. The shipyard was shut down and most of the crew had gone home for the weekend. The trap was baited and we waited. It didn't take long to catch another rat. With a squeal of glee the engineer loaded the trap with oxy/acetylene and pointed the cannon across the drydock. 3, 2, 1 *Kaboom* This time the rat exited the cannon at a very high velocity (and in a few pieces). Pieces of the rat easily flew across the drydock and into the main metal shop where the weekend security guard was snoozing! Part of the rat landed in his lap and he came flying out of the building like a scalded cat skreeching like a lil' school girl!

We disappeared quietly into the ship and denied any knowledge of what happened when the old man hauled us all up on the carpet on Tuesday morning! Y>

knottyBuoyz
08-13-2010, 10:00 AM
I forgot to add, "Don't Try This at Home" and the most dangerous thing on a ship is a bored out of his mind engineer!

cs
08-13-2010, 10:09 AM
I ain't got no cool rat stories like above. All I know is I hate rats. I have seen them beaten with a shovel and PVC glue poured on them and lit on fire though (I didn't do that myself, just part of the rat hunting/killing party).

Chad

huisjen
08-13-2010, 10:40 AM
The former owner of this house had a few bait stations scattered about. I don't like poisons. The way to keep rats out is to keep rats out. I'm re-grading the soil around the foundation. In the process, I'm adding foam insulation: 2" on the vertical face, then 1" on a slight slope away from the foundation, starting 6" below grade. The insulation will be covered with plastic to form a water barrier leading to a french drain, 4' out. The vertical insulation will be covered with cement board, mortared together at the joints with something with fiber in it. I think that will work.

I'm also stoning in the old bulkhead door area. Frost had pushed in the walls of the bulkhead foundation (concrete block) and opened up several rat sized holes. I've got walk-in doors on the other end of the basement, so the bulkhead doors (which pre-date the walk-ins) are redundant. When I'm done, the only sign of it should be the patched in clapboards above it.

I once heard a story on NPR about the new federal buildings maintenance guy in D.C. This was about 20 years ago. He was dealing with pest problems by doing proper building maintenance: fill gaps and cracks and other entrance possibilities with stuff rodents won't chew through. This was prompted by an unnamed USSC Justice who was sitting on a toilet and got "nuzzled" from below by a rat that had swum up through the pipes.

Dan

bobbys
08-13-2010, 11:08 AM
When the wheel first started the guys were bringing in Grandma’s sure-fire recipes for rat bait. The results of trial and error proved peanut butter to be a string contender, along with honey smattered on just about anything imaginable. Three or four times the rats won by cleaning every trigger, all 20 of ‘em, and only setting off a couple, I guess out of good sportsmanship. In this case the pot would roll over. Once we discovered wrapping whatever concoction and the trigger with a strip of ladies hosiery, the thieving came to a halt and we had guys splitting the pot.

Gummy bears smushed onto the trigger and wrapped with light mono filament turned out to be a top contender. Raw bacon tied on with thin wire and singed with a cigarette lighter was a pretty good performer also.



(urtis.

Thanks for the advice, Sounds like the Rats tripped those to and got away, Any preference on the Gummy bear color as to performance, Im partial to blue myself.

bobbys
08-13-2010, 11:13 AM
VC rat.

At our main base, we lived in large tents that were surrounded by used artillery powder canisters filled with dirt to protect us during mortar attacks. The tents were in pretty good shape but they were tents - open at the bottom - and critters large and small came and went at will. Inside, we divided the large area into two man rooms by breaking down wooden rocket ammo boxes and constructing 8x10 cubicles. In the "rooms" each pilot had a gym type locker to secure flight gear and weapons, a bed with mosquito net, a fan and maybe a small fridge if you could buy one from someone going home. Cozy as could be had given the situation.

It was my first night back from my stint in the field for my two days off, and having enjoyed a good time and a case of beer at the O'club, I stumbled into bed around midnight. Around two, there was blood curdling scream from the room next to mine. My first thought was SAPPERS!! I rolled out of bed onto the floor and scrambled to my locker to get my weapon. Another scream!

"AHHH! YOU MOTHER F^<&ER!!" BAM BAM... two shots from a .45...a pause, then BAM BAM BAM. "GOT THAT SON OF A BITCH!!"
Coarsely I whispered, "LYNN?! Are you ok?"
"Yeah! Jesus Christ that scared the hell out of me!"
I had my pistol cocked as I crouched outside his door. "Lynn, it's me. I'm coming in ok? Don't shoot."
"Yeah, come on in."
I pushed the door open and he turned on the lamp. I covered the tiny room with my pistol, expecting to see the body of a stripped to skivies VC sapper lying in a pool of blood. Nothing.
"Lynn, where is he? You said you got him. Where'd he go?"
"Under the tent flap I guess. Jesus! Yeah, I got his ass alright. Twice. ****, I'm shaking so bad. Like a godamned sissy school girl." He laughed and reached to get a beer out of his fridge, the cocked .45 still in his hand.
About this time people are running around yelling "What's goin' on?" "Who fired those shots?"
"IN HERE!" I yell and in a flash there's half a dozen guys brandishing all sorts of weapons crowded in the door and hallway.
Our operations officer takes charge. "Jones, Teetsel, what's the hell's going on?"
I was taking a breath, about to tell them about the wounded sapper who slithered out under the tent flap when Lynn says, "That was the biggest fu<%ing rat I've ever seen. I was asleep and he jumped on my chest. Scared the crap out me but I got his ass. Look." He pointed to a blood trail leading behind his fridge.
"A RAT?? You blew half a clip at a goddamned RAT?" I yelled.
"You should have SEEN that thing!"
"YOU COULD HAVE KILLED ME YOU JACKASS!"
"You should have SEEN that thing!"
<Peals of laughter>.

Great Story!.

Guess i better not bring up our wild Paintball stories after that one!!

Curtism
08-13-2010, 12:01 PM
.

Thanks for the advice, Sounds like the Rats tripped those to and got away, Any preference on the Gummy bear color as to performance, Im partial to blue myself.

We underestimated how smart those rats were by a far cry, and over estimated how smart we thought ourselves to be. The traps were positioned with the triggers towards the center, thinking they would have to cross the loaded trap and, as you know, those traps are touchy. How they set them off without being caught is still a mystery. And yes, being a bunch of engineers and creative/boat builder types, we tested different colors. They didn't seem to have a preference.

We finally figured out that, usually, when one trap was set off it would trigger the ones on either side of it. And of course those were always picked clean without fail, dead rat or not.

(urtis

paladin
08-13-2010, 12:49 PM
Joh's story on the size of those rats is definitely to be believed....they're called Wharf Rats, and I've never seen a cat, outside of Sasha, who could deal with them. A couple miles from our quarters was the local dump where the giv'ment bulldozed out a hole in the ground, and dumped the nearby base's garbage etc, then covered it over....it was crawling with the critters. I kept 2 boxes of ammo at all times, but periodically we would get a load of high velocity .22's....I used the Fiochi subsonic .22's in my pistol, so no screwing off with the good ammo......
We would take an afternoon off and go to the dump with suppressed High Standard .22 pistols, and shoot rats. You know the bastards are big when a single round hits them and they take off. Unless it was a head or heart shot, it took multiple hits....and they are cannibals.
In '64, while sitting on the docks of Nha Trang, on guard duty, dozens of the bastards would be running in all directions at night....I would move my "post" on top of a conex box for the night.

John of Phoenix
08-13-2010, 01:03 PM
To finish the VC rat story…

Things picked up out in the AO and the two day R&R was cut short so it was back into the field. After a three day duty cycle we rotated back to Home Plate for a couple days rest. Our bird was due for some maintenance so we came in a little early, landing a just past noon as opposed to the normal last light return. We gathered up our gear - helmet, maps, chicken plate, weapons and headed for the hooch to drop things off, intending to head for the O Club and kick back with a nice greasy burger and a few beers.

As I step into the hooch, I’m practically dropped to my knees by the stench. I spin around, push my copilot back and stager out to get some clean air. HOLY CRAP! I’m still gagging. My eyes are watering. What the hell is wrong in there? Of course… the RAT!! I come up with a brilliant plan – just take a couple of deep breaths, run in, grab my gas mask out of the locker, put it on and figure out where the rat is. On three… I dash through the door… into my room… fumble with the lock on the locker… HUH?!? What the hell is my roommate doing in his bunk at this time of day? And how can he sleep in this stench? I finally get the mask out of its case and pull it over my head, clear it and… how ‘bout that - this works. I can breathe.

I turn and look at George, my roomy, sacked out on his bunk. “George?” No response. “HEY GEORGE!”, I yell through the gas mask. Still no response. I lift the mask and yell again, “HEY ASSHOLE, WAKE UP!” and quickly pull it down again. George stirs. “HEY GEORGE, WAKE UP!”
“No.”
Ah, he’s coming around. “Wake up, man. We gotta get outa here.”
“Why?”
“Because it stinks like hell in here.”
“Yeah? Well… not if you drink enough.”
It’s noon and George is Absolutely Plastered.
“Good thinking, George. Let’s go to the Club.”
“Helluva an idea.” he slurs “Les go to da Club.” and he rolls out of bed, struggles to his feet and staggers for the door. In his underwear. I grab his flight suit and follow him out.

When Lynn showed up later, I gave him my gas mask and sent him into the hooch to track down and dispose of his rat. That damned rat (and it was huge) had crawled 15 feet before it died - under George’s bunk. It took several days to air the place out... and for George to shake his hangover.

David W Pratt
08-13-2010, 03:13 PM
John:
My Dad told the same story about a rat that was stealing his chocolate at an airstrip in Luzon during WWII, he was a P-51 pilot. The shot caused some colic among the rest of the personnel.
My guess is the same thing has occurred in every campaign, back to the Romans, and beyond.

paladin
08-13-2010, 03:51 PM
I remember one my dad told me about another rodent during WWII........
Seems they were expecting some heavy activity as the bad guys had been quietly (not as quiet as they thought) sneaking up on dad's outfit....they were on the downfacing side of a hill where the enemy charge would come over a rise and run downhill into a slight hollow and then come running up the other side straight into dad's unit......dad wasa machine gunner......they were waiting....and waiting, ....and waiting and the charge never came, and the guys were napping a few at a time, absolutely expecting a charge at any time.......the sun was coming up behind dad, and would be in the enemies face.......they were to wait until the Lt. had fired a single shot to start the action.....the sun slowly rose.......suddenly the single shot and a dozen Browning machine guns started firing at the rise...a bullet in every inch of real estate......and the LT was yelling...cease fire...no enemy........it seems a rabbit had run across the ridge and an enterprising soldier took a pot shot at it....


as best can be determined the rabbit was never found and probably escaped unharmed......the Japanese never showed up either.

JayInOz
08-13-2010, 07:43 PM
Rats leave a scent trail when they run that they can follow later to retrace their steps to get out. So if you catch a rat, chances are you will catch more on that trail later.
Best rat trap is an old steel jawed rabbit trap. Set them in a quiet dark corner and throw an old rag over them.
Most cats won't touch rats- they try it once when young and always get hurt, and won't try again.
Best bait for rats is to wipe your plate after a favourite meal with a little piece of bread. For rats that consistently steal the bait, jam a pumpkin seed onto the plate of the trap, and then smear it with aforementioned piece of bread. The rats won't be able to gently steal it and will eventually go for a good grip.
In the late forties/ early fifties my Dad and his cousin Darcy were shooting for a living on the Queensland border- mostly kangaroos at that time. They lived in a tiny tin hut in the middle of nowhere. Every few weeks the station owner would bring them the supplies they'd ordered, plus a pile of out of date newspapers to read. At night they would read by lantern light. Dad used a couple of modern rifles, but Darcy always used the old .303 rifle he'd used in the war in Borneo and other parts of the Pacific. The hut had a mouse problem. Darcy used to pull the projectile from some of his .303 ammo and replace it with a wad of newspaper. When a mouse appeared in the fireplace eating crumbs, Darcy would raise the rifle from his lap, take careful aim- and Kaboom. The noise and concussion would rattle the building and shower everything in dirt, and the mouse would be mashed into a corner with little bits of unburnt cordite sticking out of it. Their ears would be ringing and Darcy would have a grin like a fox eatin guts. Ah the good old days :) JayInOz

Breakaway
08-13-2010, 08:48 PM
We used to do night rat shoots at a duck farm. The farmer had a rat problem, adn we liked to shoot, so..

The deal was either a .410 or a .22 with scatter shot. Flashlights. Someone would open one of the barn doors where the feeding troughs were and turn on the lights. The rats would bolt for the door where the rest of us would blast away. There were always dozens --if not more--fleeing the suddenly illuminated barn. I remember one night shooting away and hitting five for five. Rats running everywhere. Then one ran up may pants leg. In my single days I had an opportunity or two to have to start running while pulling my pants on (wink-wink) But that was the only time I got UN-dressed while running at a sprint. Didn't get bit.

Kevin

coelacanth2
08-13-2010, 10:10 PM
College roomie (Rednek from Lewiston, Maine) used to borrow his daddy's 44 and pop rats at the town dump. Even made his own hollowpoints and dumdums.

JimConlin
08-13-2010, 11:52 PM
From The New Yorker, if you please-

http://www.newyorker.com/images/2010/07/26/cartoons/100726_cartoon_066_a15001_p465.gif