Image: Stefan and Kathrin Marks | Creative Commons


Consider your site's characteristics to determine which pest-control method will get you to your goal efficiently and safely.

A volunteer replaces the lure in a DOC-200 trap.
A volunteer replaces the lure in a DOC-200 trap
Image: Lauren Schaer ©

Examples of site-specific factors

Risks to non-target species (native and domestic)

  • Are there ground-dwelling birds present? Set bait stations and traps above ground level.
  • Is the site situated next to an urban area? Limit the risk to domestic animals that might encounter bait or traps.
  • If you need to control rats where weka are present use wekasafe baits such as coumatetralyl and racumin. Second-generation anticoagulants such as brodifacoum, Talon, Pestoff, Flocoumafen, Storm, or bromadiolone, can harm weka, even when used in houses.

Time of year

  • Is there an abundance of naturally occurring feed? Consider the effect on bait uptake or reschedule your operation.
  • Does your target pest species behave differently with the seasons? Consider operating when they’re easiest to target. 

Density of target pests

  • Are rat densities high? Use a toxin or self-resetting traps instead of single-trigger traps.
  • Do you have a good baiting strategy? Don’t skimp, but don’t waste bait through too-short baiting intervals.

Presence of multiple pest species

  • Do you have more than one pest species present? Consider which to target first or find methods to target multiple pests.

Public accessibility of the site

  • Does your plan pose a risk to the public’s health and safety? Plan to limit it.
  • Is there a risk of people interfering with traps or bait stations? Put safeguards in place.

Skill level of the people involved

  • Are group members competent and aware of the risks? Get relevant training and use best practice to avoid making pests bait- or trap-shy or causing suffering. 

Potential for re-invasion from the surrounding area

  • Is your site small or skinny, or surrounded by pest-dense areas? Take steps to protect borders.
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