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Air Gunner - - Your Letters -

Over many years, I have watched count­less video clips of pest con­trollers deal­ing with ver­min, whether they be rats, feral pi­geons or rab­bits. I have of­ten won­dered what on earth they do with all the bod­ies. I know how you go about prep­ping rab­bits and wood­ies but what about rats, fer­als and corvids. What are the risks and dan­gers in­volved? It would be nice to have some info on the sub­ject.

St­eff King

Hello St­eff, You ask a very im­por­tant ques­tion which could do with a full page to an­swer, but

I’ll do my best here. Rats need the most care­ful han­dling and I pre­fer to use a long-han­dled lit­ter picker to en­sure that I never touch the car­casses, and it helps me to pull them out of tight spa­ces. Over the years, I’ve dis­posed of the bod­ies as each farmer asked, some say ‘dump them a long way from the farm build­ings where foxes and bad­gers will eat them’, whilst an­other one had a reg­u­lar bon­fire and told me to put the rats onto it. He felt cre­mat­ing them re­duced the chance of the dis­eases they carry be­ing spread. Feral pi­geons can also carry dis­ease, so I treat them in the same way. Most of the corvids I shoot fall out in the coun­try­side, so I usu­ally just put the body some­where dis­creet and leave it for

the scav­engers and in­sects to con­sume. In all in­stances, I use hand sani­tiser or a proper wash with soap and wa­ter be­fore en­ter­ing build­ings or my car, to min­imise the chance of spread­ing dis­ease later when the hunt­ing is done. Ed.

That’s a lot of bod­ies to dis­pose of safely

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