How To Get Rid Of Muskrats?

Many people who live in small towns and cities might question why anyone would be concerned about muskrats, much less want to get rid of them. But for those in rural areas and for people who have ponds and lakes on their property muskrats can be a serious problem.

For example, a farm pond or small lake can be ruined by muskrats that build their tunnel from the body of water to an area that is lower in elevation. The water level can go down so far that fish are affected. In addition, those tunnels can create spots that might subside and cause injury to people and livestock walking in the area.

Muskrats are known to be excellent swimmers and are also prolific when it comes to producing young. Some studies by wildlife biologists show that a healthy adult muskrat can produce a litter four or five times a year, with as many as nine babies at a time. These young muskrats will be around for four years. The best way to get rid of muskrats is to do what you can to discourage them from taking up residence on your property.

Killing Vegetation
MuskratFor example, these animals are omnivores! In the animal kingdom they are known as herbivores because they eat vegetation that grows in and around ponds and lakes but they are also carnivores because they eat small fish, frogs, clams and other aquatic life. Some people resort to chemical treatment for killing aquatic plants. This can significantly disturb muskrat eating patterns. It is important to spray the chemical directly on the plants then, in about 10 days or so, remove the dead vegetation. Animals will use it for nesting if it isn’t removed.

If you don’t want to kill plants by spraying them with commercial chemicals you might be able to discourage muskrats by making some changes in your pond or lake. If the water is too deep (usually more than six feet) muskrats might be discouraged. In addition, these animals prefer still water. Putting a good aeration system in your pond might keep them away.

Find the Tunnel
If you can uncover those muskrat tunnels you may be able to run them off by collapsing the tunnels. This will have an effect on their lifestyle, eating patterns and traveling patterns. It might also keep your pond from being drained. You can also try trapping them when they come up on the bank to eat vegetation around the pond.

Talk with a local expert about the type of trap you need and use such items as apples and peanut butter as bait. You may also be able to keep muskrats from your pond or lake with a quality fence. It is essential to extend fencing six inches or more into the ground so that the muskrat will be discouraged from digging under the fence and gaining access to your property. There are a number of ways to get rid of muskrats. None of them are easy, but most of the methods are effective.

Category: Home & Garden, Pest Control

One Comment on “How To Get Rid Of Muskrats?”


Pam wrote:

I have called our local experts and there is no one who knows how to nor have they ever eradicated muskrats from a pond. Didn’t know what type of trap, didn’t know how to get a trap. Matter of fact, they pushed me off to an 800 number. I am frantic, my pond level is rapidly going down.

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