imafan26
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Rat Lung disease

Rat lung disease is making the news lately. Apparently it has been around a while but we have the first case on Oahu and the rest were on the other islands. It is from eating raw or undercooked foods contaminated with slugs and snails. Cooked foods are ok.
Do you see this problem in other places?

I have always had snails and slugs and I have been plagued by rats eating the sluggo. I don't eat a lot of things raw so that is my saving grace I guess. I have put out rat bait and the local stray has killed a couple of mice this year. Most of the illnesses are not reported early so they have a hard time tracking what people ate. Washing produce well especially anything you eat raw. Apparently shellfish can also have rat lungworm parasites.

https://health.hawaii.gov/docd/disease_l ... ngyliasis/
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applestar
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Re: Rat Lung disease

I've always found the lifecycle of parasites fascinating and completely creepy, particularly ones that use intermediate hosts like this one. How horrible when they can also infect/infest humans!

Please be careful imafan. That bit about drinking from the garden hose and warning against it was an eye-opener.
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thanrose
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Re: Rat Lung disease

I always drank from the garden hose as a kid, probably well into my thirties. By that time I was in Florida where all kinds of nasties increase exponentially. Running water through the hose does not eliminate the problem. I suppose if it were continuous flow it would.

I don't think we have a particular problem with rat lungworm here, but we do have rats and we do have lungs. Er, snails.

I'll continue to use the hose to wash my hands, arms, feet, legs, face, and neck as often as I feel the need, but will also wash hands and face again once I get inside. A solution might be to put an outside tap that can be capped off with something more occlusive than a ball cock. Turn off the flow, put a synthetic cork in it? That way it's household water with little chance of snails or other critters getting inside the faucet. Of course our water down here is also not recommended for eye washes or neti pots because of some biologicals that can make it through filtration and purification.

imafan26
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Re: Rat Lung disease

I catch snails in my yard every day. They even climb up and clog my dryer vent. The mice have always been around, but now I am actually seeing rats. I don't know where they are coming from. They eat through the sluggo plastic containers and bags. I should use sluggo for bait. I have cats in the house so I haven't seen any rats in the house. I have seen signs of them in my garage and lanai. I have too much clutter, but I don't get better at keeping it under control so I have put out baits in those areas. I may have to invest in some other kinds of traps. The electronic traps are good and effective and unlike the baits, the rodents are instantly killed and remain in the trap. I don't like the plastic snap traps. I have to find myself some old fashioned wooden ones. I just don't know what size to get. I did not have to deal much with rats and mice growing up since I always had outdoor cats and they left me presents all of the time; especially after the sugar fields were burned.
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ElizabethB
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Re: Rat Lung disease

Thanks for the information. I hate rats and mice almost as much as I hate roaches, mosquitoes and fire ants. Add slugs and (my most recent enemy) hornworms to the list.
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When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant. ~Author Unknown

thanrose
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Re: Rat Lung disease

I've seen the old traditional wooden and metal spring mouse traps, a little longer than a cigarette pack. But I found one amidst my dad's accumulated garage treasures, one that was surely made for a rat. Easily twice as big but same design. I imagine they still sell them somewhere, but my father likely purchased it at a garage sale. I know they didn't have rats indoors here.

I don't like the poison bait because of risk to other animals, including those that snack on the body of the rat that ingested it. And I don't like the wooden spring traps, so I guess I think you should adopt them, give them a good foundation and education and maybe a dowry.

Like you, I had cats, so never had rats or mice indoors. I prefer that sort of control, but I really do recognize the overwhelming nature of some infestations. Nature out of balance.

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Gary350
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Re: Rat Lung disease

The Plague also known as Black Death continues to be a problem in Northern New Mexico. Fleas carry the disease they hitch a ride on rodents that live on the land that is primarily cattle and horse country. The whole western part of the USA has reported cases of the Plague but it is mostly concentrated in Northern Mew Mexico. Between 2010 and 2015, there were around 584 deaths. Northern New Mexico is very nice country I explored the area about 15 years ago it is a very nice place to live. Land is not expensive and not a tourist trap like northern Arizona but towns are very small and good hospitals are very far away. High elevation 5000 ft, low humidity, snow & blizzard conditions in winter, 95 degrees in summer, low population area, the nearest big town is Albuquerque NM more than 100 miles away. Good place to grow a garden soil is about the same at Phoenix area 8ph and very little food value for plants.

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imafan26
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Re: Rat Lung disease

With rat lung disease the danger is in accidentally eating the raw slugs. Apparently if they are cooked the parasite is also toast. From what I have read, they are not sure the slime trails are dangerous. The recommendation is to wash all produce well under running water. I have a hose sprayer on the end of my hose so the slugs cannot really curl up in it; I don't drink from it anyway. Plastic hoses in the sun makes the water taste like plastic hoses. Besides plastic gives of BPA which is not to good for you.

If you eat anything raw, they recommended a triple rinse even if the produce says it is ready to eat and you wash each leaf separately.

The snails have chomped some holes in my cucumber and eggplant so I have to toss them out.

I am seeing more snails lately as it has been raining every day or every few days. I am going to have to toss out more slug bait. and do some more snail hunts.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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