Written by: Helena Kleine
Often, tried-and-tested methods are forgotten before they make a comeback. This was also the case with the beater trap. Over the past decades, it has been replaced by rodenticides (rat poisons), which initially appear to be less complicated in their application and make the step of checking and cleaning traps superfluous. However, there is now much scientific evidence of how harmful rat poison is to the environment and non-target animals. Permanent baiting with poisons against rats and mice is therefore no longer permitted by law.
An alternative was needed, especially for professional use. The answer: sustainable, digital impact traps. In this article, we explain what is important when using them:
The following also applies to snap traps: If you buy cheap, you buy expensive. The very cheap offers warp when snapped shut and disappoint with an unreliable kill rate. This not only costs money when the traps have to be replaced, but also means unnecessary extra work for the pest controller. Good traps should last for many years.
And if you want to integrate the impact traps into a digital system (more on this in the next chapter), good quality pays off even more. You can recognize high-quality beat traps by a combination of the following eight factors:
1. High impact
Naturally, any pest that triggers the trap should also be killed immediately. On the one hand, this avoids unnecessary animal suffering. On the other hand, traps with a certified high impact force eliminate the obligation for daily control. The Gorilla Traps from Futura Germany, for example, are certified according to §18 Infection Protection Act due to their very high killing rate and therefore do not have to be checked every 24 hours.
2. Low tolerance in impact force
If the impact force of a trap varies unintentionally (i.e. has too high a tolerance), the killing of the pest cannot be relied upon. Often a high tolerance in the impact force results from cheap materials or a suboptimal design - thus occurs primarily with cheap suppliers.
3. Stiffness of the material, e.g. by glass fiber reinforcement of the plastic
To ensure that the trap does not warp immediately after the first release and lasts for years, the material must have good rigidity. This also ensures that the energy released during release is not lost. Thus, the stiffness in turn supports the impact force. One way to improve stiffness is to reinforce the plastic with fiberglass.
4. Sturdy hooks to hold the hanger in place
If you combine high impact force with strong materials, the opened latch is under enormous tension. To prevent the shackle from loosening prematurely, the hooks at the back of the trap must be of a stable design.
5. Pick up the suitable bait
Surely you have your favorite baits. So when buying new traps, make sure that they will definitely fit in them. This sounds obvious, but is often enough overlooked.
6. Step adjustment according to gram numbers
In order to exclude bycatch, e.g. of protected species such as the field mouse, it is advisable to use a step setting. This determines from how many grams the trap is triggered. Gorilla Traps, for example, have three levels: 1=mouse, 2= rat + mouse, 3=rat.
7. Coating of the hammer
The hammer is a weak point in many traps and corrodes quickly. Then, of course, impact power is lost. To prevent this from happening, the striker bars of high quality traps are coated.
8. Option for use as a digital impact trap
More and more companies now rely on digital pest control. However, not all traps have the necessary sensors and can be equipped with chips. If you are looking for digital strike traps, we recommend taking a look at our eMitter traps.
For a long time now, professional pest control has not just been about responding to acute pest infestations. Instead, concepts such as "Integrated Pest Management" (IPM) and "Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points" (HACCP) pursue the goal of preventing pest infestations and identifying trends at an early stage.
This is exactly where digital systems for pest control come in. Strike traps are equipped with sensors and chips and send a signal to a gateway when triggered. Depending on the equipment, an integrated camera can also take a photo of the pest. The gateway transmits the information to a central system that can notify those responsible, for example via app or SMS. In most cases, data from monitoring boxes and cameras is also sent to this digital system for observation. This results in many advantages:
High-quality, digital beat traps enable proactive pest control - in many cases even without poisons. You can find out more about this topic in this article and in our webinar series "Introduction to digital pest control".
In 2003, we at Futura Germany set out to find good alternatives to rodenticides. The environmental impact of poisons was still largely underestimated or downplayed at the time, but it was foreseeable that regulations and laws would change sooner or later. And one thing struck us during our search: The solutions on the market were not convincing.
So we started to develop our own traps with Gorilla Traps. The daily control of beater traps (sometimes many hundreds in a farm) cost pest controllers a lot of time. So a few years later we developed digital solutions.
If you have any questions about the use of impact traps or digital pest control, just contact us!