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Still Waters

Are you never more than 6ft away from a rat?

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It's a saying that seems almost deliberately contrived to get a reaction, but isn't exactly clear where the adage comes from.

It may derive from the former Ministry of Agriculture, suggests rodent expert Prof Rob Smith from the University of Huddersfield. They circulated many public health announcements to promote hygiene in homes.

It is also associated with another commonly quoted statistic, that the population of rats outnumbers the population of humans.

http://www.bbc.co.uk...gazine-20716625

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I'm always close to my rats.

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"Are you never more than 6ft away from a rat?"

I live next to one, and he has learned to walk on two legs.

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Well, since all my uncles have practiced in law, during family reunions, it's true.

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Everytime I go to a cash machine I'm no more than a foot away from a huge amount of cash.....sadly its not mine

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I own pet rats so guess this would be true...

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There has been rats scurrying around the block of flats that I live in in Bolton.

Fortunately I've only had a few field mice in my flat - there is a large field just in front of the block - and, even more fortunately, my cat usually captures and kills them. My next door neighbour, however, has seen gigantic rats scurrying about in his flat. He once woke up after falling asleep on the settee and saw a rat run behind the armchair. His and Malcolm, who used to live in the flat upstairs, ended up moving all the furniture in his living room to look for it put it had gone. He once came back home from holiday and, when entering his kitchen, he saw a rat on his kitchen sideboard. Even more scarily he once woke up in bed one morning and saw a rat on his bedside cabinet, just feeta way from him.

Edited by TheLastLazyGun

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I also have pet rats so, very true for me :)

Brilliant animals, rats are.

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lol - well there are a lot of rats, i was more than 6ft from one today ;)

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Actually ,you are never more than six feet from a spider ,no matter where you live .

I'm not even sure if beaches or freezing places,are exempt .

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I live in Alberta Canada, we are rat free here and the province spends millions yearly keeping it that way. Now I have alway heard it being spiders as well, creeps me out.

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I live in Alberta Canada, we are rat free here and the province spends millions yearly keeping it that way. Now I have alway heard it being spiders as well, creeps me out.

Agreed!! They are so alien looking like this lovely cane spider we have in Hawaiipost-109094-0-98688200-1356589661_thumb.

They get pretty big but are generally harmless.

Regardless, I'd rather have a rat near me any day.

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Rats are a major problem here on the farm. We have to employ the services of Ol' Maurice and his son every month or so. They bring their Jack Russel terriers down and lively fun is had in and out of the barns and stables for a couple of hours!

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Rats are a major problem here on the farm. We have to employ the services of Ol' Maurice and his son every month or so. They bring their Jack Russel terriers down and lively fun is had in and out of the barns and stables for a couple of hours!

Wild rats are quite annoying and so difficult to get rid of but someone once told me that you have to mark your territory so, maybe if you urinated in the areas where they lived they will get the hint... I certainly wouldn't want to live where someone peed. lol

I know for sure that rat urine will keep mice away since they are mortal enamies in the wild.

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Actually ,you are never more than six feet from a spider ,no matter where you live .

I'm not even sure if beaches or freezing places,are exempt .

That's what I had heard too, that you are never more than six feet from a spider...*shudders*

Reminds me of what someone had posted in a different forum...a picture of a house on fire and underneath the caption "well I accidentally caught the house on fire, but I think I got the spider..."

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I live in a heavily forested area and I had a rat trying to break into my house in the middle of the night. He finally made it and the shoes were flying until he left. Set a trap but he avoided it. Finally got the upper hand and he left. He was a pretty rat too. Light grey with pink ears and fat.

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Actually ,you are never more than six feet from a spider ,no matter where you live .

I'm not even sure if beaches or freezing places,are exempt .

I wish beaches were exempt, I live on the beach (not literally) and still have spiders. We have this old superstition here that it's bad luck to kill spiders in your house. Probably came about before the bug spray was invented since they kill and eat other bugs.

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I know for sure that rat urine will keep mice away since they are mortal enamies in the wild.

wouldn't go as far to say they are mortal enemies, but rats hunt mice (among other small animals), mice can do next to nothing to a rat.

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Rats are a major problem here on the farm. We have to employ the services of Ol' Maurice and his son every month or so. They bring their Jack Russel terriers down and lively fun is had in and out of the barns and stables for a couple of hours!

ealdy, I am shocked at your lack of humanity!

I once moved into an Labourers cottage, septic tank never having been emptied and unlived in for more than forty years.

I was out trying to clear the brambles with industrial-powered cutters, from what I intended to make into a garden.

Up through the track I had cleared appeared my wee terrier dog with a rat the size of a small dog in his teeth.

I ran, and ran and ran and ran..........................!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Still, I wouldn't harm a rat if I could avoid it.

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Rats are a major problem here on the farm. We have to employ the services of Ol' Maurice and his son every month or so. They bring their Jack Russel terriers down and lively fun is had in and out of the barns and stables for a couple of hours!

it reminds me of the poem By Seamus Heaney

The Early Purges

I was six when I first saw kittens drown.

Dan Taggart pitched them, 'the scraggy wee ****s',

Into a bucket; a frail metal sound,

Soft paws scraping like mad. But their tiny din

Was soon soused. They were slung on the snout

Of the pump and the water pumped in.

'Sure, isn't it better for them now?' Dan said.

Like wet gloves they bobbed and shone till he sluiced

Them out on the dunghill, glossy and dead.

Suddenly frightened, for days I sadly hung

Round the yard, watching the three sogged remains

Turn mealy and crisp as old summer dung

Until I forgot them. But the fear came back

When Dan trapped big rats, snared rabbits, shot crows

Or, with a sickening tug, pulled old hens' necks.

Still, living displaces false sentiments

And now, when shrill pups are prodded to drown

I just shrug, 'Bloody pups'. It makes sense:

'Prevention of cruelty' talk cuts ice in town

Where they consider death unnatural

But on well-run farms pests have to be kept down.

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Agreed!! They are so alien looking like this lovely cane spider we have in Hawaiipost-109094-0-98688200-1356589661_thumb.

They get pretty big but are generally harmless.

Regardless, I'd rather have a rat near me any day.

I wouldn't find that spider so lovely if I saw it scuttling across my living room floor.

Edited by TheLastLazyGun

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Here's a scary fact:

In the United Kingdom, some figures show the rat population has been rising, with estimations that 81 million rats reside in the UK.Those figures would mean there are 1.3 rats per person in the country.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brown_rat#Distribution_and_habitat

The brown rat lives almost all over the planet. It inhabits every continent except Antarctica and is the planet's most successful mammal after humans.

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If that 6' is underground, I've got no problem with it :P

We have no basements here.

They can be nasty and carry diseases, I wouldn't even want my cats to tackle with one. One cat tried once, and was scared off by the thing as it jumped repeatedly in his face and bit at him.

Our other cat then took up the chase, but I'm not sure if it caught it or not.

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ealdy, I am shocked at your lack of humanity!

Sorry, Misty...."Rats is vermin" as they say round here. I'd rather use terriers than put down traps or poison, which can kill anything, friend or foe alike that come in contact with them. Especially with kids around the farm.

Rats are carriers of disease such as bubonic plague, cryptosporidium (a cause of gastroenteritis), salmonella, listeria and toxoplasmosis.

Between 50 per cent and 60 per cent of rats carry and excrete the organism Leptospira ictero-haemorrhagiae in their urine. Infection of humans causes Weil's disease, which is fatal in one in 10 cases. (Humanity? My bottom!)

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I wouldn't find that spider so lovely if I saw it scuttling across my living room floor.

You can see yourself in their eyes.... :o

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