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Placing Rat Traps Outside: 3 Options for You

Rat hiding outside in the dirt

Whether you’re a city dweller or nestled in the countryside, the presence of rodents in our outdoor domains can pose a significant challenge. However, fear not, for where there are challenges, there are also solutions!

In the perpetual tango between humans and rats, we’re here to offer an effective solution: outdoor rat traps. Mice and rats often enter our homes through gaps and cracks– why not stop them at the source?

This guide reveals the arsenal available to fortify your outdoor spaces against rodent invasions. Keep reading as we uncover how to use rat traps outside the science behind creating your own ingenious solutions.

Types of Outdoor Rat Traps

Creating rat traps for outdoor use can be a cost-effective and customizable solution. While several commercial traps are available, some DIY options can effectively help control rat populations in outdoor spaces without jeopardizing the local wildlife. Here are some innovative methods to craft your own rat traps:

Bucket Trap

One popular DIY rat trap is the bucket trap. You’ll need a large bucket or bin, a wooden plank, and bait to make this. Partially fill the bucket with water and float the plank on the water’s surface, making sure one end of the plank hangs over the bucket’s edge. 

Place bait on the end of the plank extending over the bucket. When the rat steps onto the plank to reach the bait, it will tip over, sending the rat into the water. This method effectively captures rats and prevents their escape.

PVC Pipe Trap

Crafting a PVC pipe trap is another ingenious DIY method. Take a long PVC pipe and create a seesaw-like mechanism by balancing it on a fulcrum. Place bait on one end of the pipe and position it over a bucket or a container. When the rat climbs onto the pipe for the bait, the pipe will tip, dropping the rat into the container below.

Homemade Box Trap

Constructing a homemade box trap is relatively simple. Use a cardboard box or wooden crate and create a door that functions as a trigger mechanism. Place bait inside the box, and when the rat enters to access the bait, the trigger mechanism will close the door, trapping the rodent inside. 

When creating DIY rat traps for outdoor use, it’s crucial to consider the safety of other animals, pets, and humans. Additionally, check local regulations regarding trapping and disposing of rodents, as some methods may have specific legal considerations.

Utilizing these DIY rat traps outside can be a proactive approach to managing rat infestations, complementing other pest control measures, and maintaining a rodent-free environment. These homemade traps are not only cost-effective but also allow for customization based on the specific needs of your outdoor space.


Here are some valuable tips for effectively using and placing rat traps outdoors to ensure optimal results in controlling rat infestations:

  • Strategic Placement: Identify areas where rats are most active. These could include along fences, near garbage bins, around compost areas, or close to any potential entry points to your property. Placing traps in these locations increases the likelihood of catching rats.
  • Baiting Techniques: Utilize effective baiting techniques to attract rats to the traps. Rats are attracted to food sources like peanut butter, bacon, dried fruit, or small pieces of meat. Ensure the bait is securely attached to the trap to prevent the rats from stealing it without triggering the trap.
  • Regular Checking and Maintenance: Check the traps regularly, preferably daily, to remove captured rats. This prevents the buildup of decomposing rodents and ensures that the traps remain active and ready to catch more rats.
  • Protection from Elements: Outdoor traps are exposed to weather conditions, so ensure they are adequately protected. Use weather-resistant materials for DIY traps and place them in sheltered areas to shield them from rain, snow, or extreme sunlight.
  • Proper Disposal: Dispose of trapped rats correctly and in accordance with local regulations. Wearing gloves, remove the rat from the trap and place it in a sealed bag before disposing of it in the designated manner.
  • Multiple Traps: Deploy numerous traps simultaneously to increase the chances of catching rats effectively. Various traps can be used in numerous locations to target rats with different preferences or behaviors.
  • Persistence and Patience: Controlling rat populations outdoors may take time and persistence. Keep using traps consistently and be patient; it may require several attempts before significantly reducing rat numbers.

Following these guidelines, you can effectively utilize rat traps outside to manage their populations and maintain a pest-free outdoor environment. Consistency, proper placement, and attention to detail are critical factors in successfully controlling rat infestations.

But if you need a bit of extra help with your persistent rodent infestation, be sure to contact the experts at United States Pest Service! Get in touch with us today for top-notch rodent pest control in the Rockland and Middletown areas!

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for any recurring service!

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