Pest Control

 

Typical pest control work was the applying of a pesticide powder, or spray, to apple trees (Snelling, 2004, p. 46), which was potentially dangerous work due to the temperamental nature of the mechanisms which were used to apply the powder or spray. Furthermore, with the help of farmers, Kramer accounts that the Land Army helped to eradicate the Colorado beetle. Another common task for the Land Girls was the catching of rats – much to the dismay of the more squeamish girls. The propaganda slogan of the time was ‘Kill That Rat: It’s Doing Hitler’s Work‘. The process involved the laying of sugared bait and clearing away the dead rats. (Mant, 1994)

Damp, but cheerful, spraying gang in Devonshire

Photo from The Land Girl, December 1943, p15

English 'land girls' of the Women's Land Army in Bedfordshire planning a campaign to combat the infestation of crops by Colorado beetles in 1948. The majority of women who had undertaken agricultural national service on Great Britain's farms during the war were demobilised at the end of the conflict in 1945 but many continued to be paid volunteers on farms because of the continued need for their labour until the scheme ended on 30 November 1950. Source: Stuart Antrobus. Courtesy of Bedfordshire Times, England.

English ‘land girls’ of the Women’s Land Army in Bedfordshire planning a campaign to combat the infestation of crops by Colorado beetles in 1948. 
Source: Stuart Antrobus. Courtesy of Bedfordshire Times, England.

I Am A Rat Catcher

Article by A. Hunt (81849) from The Land Girl, May 1944, p5

Pest Control WLA

Spraying gang of land girls in the apple orchard at Cockayne-Hatley during the Second World War.

Spraying gang of land girls in the apple orchard at Cockayne-Hatley during the Second World War.