NYC vermin complaints skyrocket as 80% coronavirus restrictions relax and ‘life is getting back to normal’

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Towards the end of January, as complaints continued to increase from last year, a TikTok user posted a video in New York City of not one, but two rats dead on the street.



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The rat race seems to be returning to New York.

A year after the first coronavirus pandemic in which normal life was suspended, think of the city rats who also suffered.

As restaurants and bars were closed and meals inside hung as the city was forced to shut down, a reliable food source for the Big Apple rodent population suddenly dried up.

But now life is slowly returning to normal, as are the number of vermin complaints with a city hotline in March reporting an 80% increase from the same time last year.

There were 2,906 complaints in March. For comparison, it’s even higher than pre-pandemic levels: In 2019, the city’s 311 complaints line saw 2,395 for rodents, Bloomberg reports.

In mid-March, an Instagram user in New York posted a photo of a rat on a car windshield: It’s unclear how the rat got there, or if he was part of the recent swarm of invading town, but this user took it as a sign of bad things to come

Towards the end of January, as complaints continued to increase from last year, a TikTok user posted a video in New York City of not one, but two rats dead on the street.

Towards the end of January, as complaints continued to rise from last year, a TikTok user posted a video in New York City of not one, but two rats dead on the street.

Social media users captured their sightings of the vermin and posted them online.  This rat was potted on the streets of Brooklyn in March as calls in the city rose 80%

Social media users captured their sightings of the vermin and posted them online.  This rat was potted on the streets of Brooklyn in March as calls in the city rose 80%

Social media users captured their sightings of the vermin and posted them online. This rat was potted on the streets of Brooklyn in March as calls in the city rose 80%

Information from the city shows that sightings of rats and mice have increased significantly, with most complaints coming from Brooklyn, followed by Manhattan and Queens.

“As things open up, you will have more and more food available,” said Benjamin Hottel, an entomologist. “There will be more pressure for restaurants with rodents as their business increases.

As expected, areas that were mostly deserted at the height of the pandemic, such as business premises, are now experiencing increased rodent activity as workers return to officers.

But the New York City shutdown also changed the behavior of rats, as pests that depended on feasting on garbage from nearby restaurants were suddenly forced to find new sources of food.

One person spotted a rat on a railing when she peeked out a window in Brooklyn in February

One person spotted a rat on a railing when she peeked out a window in Brooklyn in February

One person spotted a rat on a railing when she peeked out a window in Brooklyn in February

Rats are once against being spotted along NYC subway platforms

Rats are once against being spotted along NYC subway platforms

Rats are once against being spotted along NYC subway platforms

Couple of rats have been spotted flying on NYC subway tracks

Couple of rats have been spotted flying on NYC subway tracks

Couple of rats have been spotted flying on NYC subway tracks

As restaurants closed, except for take-out, much less food waste was dumped in alleys or trash cans, causing the local rodent population to search for trash.

As restaurants closed, except for take-out, much less food waste was dumped in alleys or trash cans, causing the local rodent population to search for trash.

As restaurants closed, except for take-out, much less food waste was dumped in alleys or trash cans, causing the local rodent population to search for trash.

Many people posted rat sightings on social media accounts

Many people posted rat sightings on social media accounts

Many people posted rat sightings on social media accounts

Several rats could be seen running along a wall

Several rats could be seen running along a wall

Several rats could be seen running along a wall

In May, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a warning regarding “unusual or aggressive rodent behavior.”

“There was this chaos for the rats. They’re trying to figure out where the easiest food source is because some food sources are gone, ”Hottel said.

The rats also suddenly became more active during the day and moved to residential areas where more food and waste could be found, but the creatures are expected to resume their more familiar behavior as life slowly returns to normal.

“A restaurant is suddenly shutting down now, which has happened by the thousands not just in New York, but from coast to coast and around the world, and those rats that used to live in that restaurant, in a place nearby. , and maybe for decades. generations of rats that depended on that restaurant food, well, life just doesn’t work out for them anymore, and they only have a few choices, ”Corrigan told NBC News last year.

When hungry rats move to areas where food is still available, carnage ensues.

Bobby Corrigan, an urban rodentologist who holds both a masters and a doctorate.  in rodent control, said rats that depend on houses for their food supply are still doing well

Bobby Corrigan, an urban rodentologist who holds both a masters and a doctorate.  in rodent control, said rats that depend on houses for their food supply are still doing well

Bobby Corrigan, an urban rodentologist who holds both a masters and a doctorate. in rodent control, said rats that depend on houses for their food supply are still doing well

New York rat has a trash can all by itself

A rat has a trash can all by itself looking for food in New York

New York rat has a trash can all by itself

“It’s like we’ve seen in the history of mankind, where people try to take over land and they come with military and armies and fight to the death, literally, for who will conquer this land. And that’s what happens with rats, ”says Bobby Corrigan, an urban rodentologist who has both a master’s and a doctorate. in the fight against rodent pests, said.

“A new ‘army’ of rats is coming, and whichever army has the most powerful rats is going to conquer this region.

Fierce turf wars extend beyond fighting for food – often causing rats to eat each other.

“These are mammals like you and me, and so when you’re really, really hungry, you won’t act the same way – you act really badly, usually,” he said.

“So these rats are fighting with each other, now the adults are killing the young in the nest and cannibalizing the puppies. “

In March, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the city would increase the number of garbage collections after services were cut due to budget limitations during the pandemic.

Last year in New Orleans, viral videos emerged swarms of rats invading roads and sidewalks in generally bustling neighborhoods like the French Quarter (pictured)

Last year in New Orleans, viral videos emerged swarms of rats invading roads and sidewalks in generally bustling neighborhoods like the French Quarter (pictured)

Last year in New Orleans, viral videos emerged swarms of rats invading roads and sidewalks in generally bustling neighborhoods like the French Quarter (pictured)

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