I've just come here to ask the same question. I have a squirrel-proof cage feeder up a pole near a tree in the garden, and it is successfully squirrel proof so far - but not rat proof. Just seen one actually inside the cage in broad daylight. Furious.
Unfortunately a baffle isn't practical for where the feeder is (the rat is jumping out of a tree onto it and there's nowhere in my small garden to move the feeder away from the tree). I was wondering whether I could somehow use peppermint oil or spray somehow to deal with it, but I'm not sure if birds tolerate peppermint or if it'll put them off too. Anyone know?
Hi Supertramp and Chris
I think Rats are probably the hardest thing to keep under control when you have food out for the birds without taking extreme measures to control them.
I'm like you Supertramp I have Hedgehogs in my garden so cannot use poison/traps if I see any Rats so I have taken the option to shoot them.
Chris is it jumping onto the top of the feeder?, if so you try a baffle above it like a rain cover.
I don't know if the spray will deter the Rats but I wouldn't think it would put the birds off.
I am lucky with so many foxes and badgers visiting I haven't seen a rat for ages, but my neighbor was troubled with them a few weeks ago they even burrowed into his greenhouse, he bought a catch em alive trap and caught two, he took them to a local park and released them-no sign of rats since.
If I had rats, I would immediately call out pest control.