Standard advice for composting is to restrict yourself to prunings and vegetable peelings, avoiding cooked food and especially meat and dairy. The reason for this advice is to reduce the bin’s attractiveness to rats – in meat and dairy compost really well! We are trialling two ways of rat-proofing a compost bin. The first is a steel sleeve which goes around the base of a standard “dalek” type bin. The second is a slatted bin whose material we believe may be rat-proof. In either case the bin must be placed on concrete, paving slabs or steel mesh to keep rats out of the bottom. We want to see if our proposed designs really are rat proof, enabling people to comfortably put a wider range of material into their bins. We have 3 slatted bins in place and are now seeking expressions of interest from people willing to try one of the sleeves around their existing bin.
If you would be interested in taking part, let us know! We are looking for sites with a known rat problem. We are funding a small number of sleeves but welcome contributions toward the cost. chair[at]transitionsouthampton[dot]org