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How to destroy rat's nests in the garden

Updated February 21, 2017

Rats are common household pests that may also set up nests in your garden, shed, compost pile or wood pile. Rats will use twigs, fallen leaves, or other common outdoor materials to build nests. When you find a rat's nest in your garden, call an exterminator or set out traps to remove the rats before destroying the nests. Destroying the nests requires the use of a disinfectant to prevent the transmission of disease.

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  1. Fill a bucket with a household disinfectant. Put on rubber gloves.

  2. Lift the nest out of the garden with a shovel. Do not touch the nest with your bare hands. Dunk the nest in the bucket of disinfectant and leave it there for five minutes.

  3. Use the shovel to lift out the nest and put it in a plastic trash bag. Put that bag in a second trash bag and tie that bag closed. Place the garbage bags in a dumpster.

  4. Rake up any dead leaves or other foliage, mulch, or compost covering the soil in the garden. Rats will burrow in these materials and build nests in the future. Dispose of the materials in the garbage.

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Things You'll Need

  • Bucket
  • Household disinfectant
  • Rubber gloves
  • Shovel
  • 2 garbage bags
  • Rake

About the Author

Based in Richmond, Va., Dawn Gibbs writes about topics such as history, fashion, literature, crafts, alternative medicine and healthy living. Her work has appeared on GreenDaily.com and several style websites. Gibbs holds a Bachelor of Arts in history from Virginia Commonwealth University.

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