Date: 10 January 2018. Rat Traps (securing mouse traps too)
knock teak, I have not had an issue with rodents aboard Seaweed.
This fact does not mean that I am unprepared for such an event. To
be on the safe side several traps were purchased. In case I'm faced
with rats or mice I want weapons in my arsenal.
Here is how I make sure the critters cannot escape.
close to mangroves. Along with birds, rats live in the mangroves.
It would be easy for a critter to come aboard my
Proof that critters do board my
This is Ella. She is a Great Blue Heron. I named her
↑ Ella Fitzgerald because Ella sings the blues...
Boats that tie to a dock at some point may be faced with
rodents. Old sailors will suggest putting a metal funnel on your
lines so that the critters cannot climb aboard easily. The large end
faces the dock. This supposedly prevents rats from coming aboard. Theory says that as long as the funnel is large
enough the rat won't be able to climb over and your boat will be
works in Theory. I should have named my boat Theory.
Theory is wonderful. That said, I want weapons of destruction aboard
and ready. Thus I went to Walmart and bought both a rat trap and
four mouse traps. I bought Victor brand. The single rat trap was $2.
A four pack of mouse traps were also $2.
on mouse traps: You can buy two at the dollar store for a buck.
Then I got out my drill. I
chose a 3/8" drill bit and made a HOLE ↓
in one corner of each trap.
My plan is
to tie a small piece of twine through the hole in the corner. Then
I'll secure the trap to something structural. That way when a
critter is caught it cannot drag off the trap to an inaccessible
spot in my bilge.
Because I do
not intend to reuse the trap I want to be able to grab the trap by
I am not
touching a dead rat.
That is not in my future. I'll hold the trap by the string over the
water. Then I will cut the line close to the trap. I am saving the
twine. I like that stuff.
Doesn't everybody have a box of Small Stuff? That's what Daddy
called lines 1/8" in diameter and smaller. I have a box from Estee
Lauder (it held my favorite perfume in the world, Beautiful) that
holds Small Stuff. You might be surprised how often I have used a
few inches of the line stored in that plastic box.
things that make this life satisfying. For me, having supplies is
critical to my happiness quotient. I want to be prepared. Should a
mouse or rat dare to invade my Seaweed, I can get rid of it
There are more important things to do than go to a store to buy rat
I have visitors I want to watch. Viewing manatees playing under the
mangroves is fun.
There are two manatees in the mangroves behind
Seaweed. Because they resemble
large grey rocks spotting them is easiest when they come to the
surface to breathe.
Enjoying life aboard Seaweed often seems to mean that time vanishes
more rapidly than I can imagine. Watching wildlife can fill hours.
Grab a kindle and read too? Well, entire days can disappear before I
afloat is awesome. I highly recommend it!
This is Cap'n Kim's ↑
Sea Turtle. Sea Turtle was home for Kim and family.
Kim's galley, starboard side
Cap'n Kim is a great
cook. A lot of ladies afloat are amazing in the galley. For
myself, I enjoy spending time and effort in making healthy
foods. There are fewer distractions when at anchor. Thus I can experiment and go wild in my galley.
Sometimes that innovation
is a success. Not always though. I got a little too
enthusiastic recently. In case you wondered, adding eleven
dehydrated chili peppers to a pot of chili is a BAD IDEA.
Three would have been plenty though next time I'll start with
just one pepper.
could say I'm a red hot cook now. My chili was scorching!
All of us who live on boats are careful. Our
galleys are kept clean and we do all we can to avoid pests.
Having a few mouse
traps and one rat trap is a way to insure that no rodent will take
up permanent residence aboard Seaweed.
sanitary issue, rats will eat through the insulation on your wiring.
They can chew into plastic and cardboard boxes to get to the
contents. And they poop. Eek!
about it, I may just add another rat trap to my arsenal. I will
again drill a hole in one end for a line. Securing the trap will
keep the critter in one spot.
thinking about rodents gives me the creeps. Yuck.
To finish on
a bright note, here's a visitor I don't mind one iota:
This is Buddy waiting for me to give him hotdog wafers.
One of us is well trained.
Enjoying life afloat is what I do. I wish the same
happiness I experience to each of you. Happy boating!
Addendum, January 2018:
Cap'n Sid Tracy in the Comments Section tells of a rat trap that
can easily be made by yours truly. Best of all, I already have
everything necessary aboard Seaweed. I liked his idea so much
I've copied it here so all can read it. Thank you for posting
the how-to captain.
Cap'n Sid says:
A cheaper way to rid your self of rodents
is to take a plastic pail and puncture two sides. Up near the
top. Run a piece of dowel rod thru one hole have a piece of PVC
that fits over the dowel rod and will rotate. The rod carries on
through the next hole. The PVC must rotate freely. Then in the
center of the PVC place a dab of peanut butter or other sticky
bait. Fill water in the pail but below the rod and PVC.
Rat/mouse will trot across the rod to the PVC and when he/she
starts across the PVC for a bit of bait the PVC rotates and
drops him/her into the water. Now if he/she drowns you can just
empty the pail overboard and some fish will have a snack. If
he/she is still paddling around either dump or dingy away to a
new location and relocate the unwanted guest. This worked for
I'd love to know if you keep rat and mouse traps on
And, have you ever done the funnel trick to keep rats off your boat?
Five Dollars at
a Time ~
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