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As you read this, hundreds of mice feast in McBain

 

Critters—mice, rats, cockroaches, pigeons, bedbugs—happen to have easy access to our dorm rooms. Proud as I may be of the ability of a mouse to sneak into my building, I am never glad to find one scurrying over my foot in the middle of the night in McBain.

By Mark Hay

Published March 1, 2010 

 

Last year, members of Columbia University’s Urban Landscape Lab aided in the launch of an interactive exhibit, known as Safari 7, exploring the interaction of architecture and natural ecosystems along the number 7 subway line. I mention this because each time I recall the exhibit or happen to travel on the 7, I remember the life teeming along that line. The tenacity of wildlife in this city never ceases to amaze me. For God’s sake, Queens has urban chickens. Trite though it may be, I sometimes stop while strolling the campus at night, to catch the faint twitch of life in the bushes. But it is only sometimes that I stop to wax poetically over the success of life springing from the concrete. And there is more than occasional life—less than beautiful life—lurking on campus. Although, from the way the University treats it, you would never know.

Unfortunately, some of the sturdiest creatures in an urban environment happen to be some of the most disgusting. These critters—miceratscockroaches, pigeons, bedbugs—also happen to have the easiest access to our dorm rooms. Proud as I may be of the ability of a mouse to sneak into my building, I am never glad to find one scurrying over my foot in the middle of the night in McBain. To a certain extent, one must accept such things when living in New York, but, disturbed as I have been of late by recurrent outbreaks of mice and other critters in McBain, I have gotten to thinking about vermin at Columbia. As a result, I have come to the following conclusion: through some odd strain of luck, Columbia has become an ideal breeding ground for critters.

 

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Norway Rats - just the facts!

 

The Name... 

Originally the Norway Rat was called the "Hanover rat" by people linking problems in 18th century England with the House of Hanover (German Royal Dynasty), it is not known for certain why the brown rat is named Rattus norvegicus (Norwegian rat) as it did not originate from Norway.  

Today, we refer to the Norway Rat as the "brown rat" or the "Serwer Rat".

Regions

The Norway Rat can be found throughout the United States, all continents and is currently the dominant rat in europe. The Norway rat is most commonly found in urban enviroments and will live anywhere humans live.

Food

This rat is a true omnivore and will eat just about anything, favoring high protiens such as dog and cat food, nuts and even fish. Favorite food items of the Norway Rat include; eggs (cooked), pop-corn, cereal and even macaroni.

Behavior

Norway rats are well know for damaging and destroying material by gnawing, eats and contaminates stored food, its bite is also a risk to humans as they are a vector or carrier of diseases

The Norway rat is nocturnal and unlike mice they shy away from new objects introduced into their territory. The Norway rats nesting preference is the lower parts of structures such as basements in piles of debris and or merchandise but has also been found outdoors on or around riverbanks, railroad embankments, piles of rubbish and under concrete slabs.

Identification

Norway Rats are 7"- 9 1/2" with a tail length of 6"-18" long. Fur is coarse, shaggy and color is usually brown. The Norway rat has a blunt muzzle, small ears and eyes. 

Treatment Methods

The control of rodents can be widely varied, depending on the individual situation. Covering holes, filling cracks, baiting or trapping may be necessary. The trained Clark Pest Control Technician will determine the best means of control for each customer.  

 

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Rat Panic in Verdi Square

 

 

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The rat problem in the Upper West Side's Verdi Square, once called Needle Park, has gotten so bad that recently the Parks Dept. called for back-up. "We have sent an extra staff person there in the early morning and later in the day," said Cristina DeLuca, a spokeswoman from the Parks Dept. "The park is now being cleaned as much as three times a day to address the rodent issues." Still, neighborhood residents say the rats are part of their routine. "If you clap your hands at night they all jump out of the bushes," said Rob Hafferman, who lives nearby. It turns out, the rodents have not gone undocumented.

In 1987 Verdi Square, then popularly called Needle Park, was a hang-out for drug dealers (1971's "The Panic in Needle Park" stars a young Al Pacino as a scag-hustling junkie) and homeless people. Also rats. That year the Times wrote "scattered pigeon food, such as bread crumbs and corn, has also attracted rats, and notices of rat poison placed by the Parks Department are posted on the square's trees."

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Salinas Rats find refuge from rain; Salinas-area exterminators busy

 

Source: thecalifornian.com

Reports of rodents, other vermin on rise after storms

If you aren't a fan of things that creep and crawl, you may want to salinas ratsstop reading here. People aren't the only ones who sought the dry warmth of indoor spaces during the recent storms along the Central Coast.

Rats, opossums and other animals looked for the same thing.

But as water from 10 straight days of rain destroyed the animals' underground or outdoor homes, they sought shelter of another kind.

"If it wasn't in our [humans'] houses, it would be fine," said Travis Mickle, of Clark Pest Control in Salinas. Local pest control experts have seen a big increase in calls about animals invading people's homes. And more rain is forecast for today...

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Rodents - Calls over rodent problems 'drop' during cold

 

As Northern Ireland emerges from its sub-zero temperatures, two populations appear not to have fared so well in the big freeze.

An apparent absence of house mice and rats has had a knock-on effect at Belfast City Council.

The council's pest control department has said there has been a decrease in calls over mice and rat problems during December.

Rat The council says calls over rat problems were down in December

The Council's Pest Control Manager, Earl d'Hulst, said both populations may have been hit by a combination of the severe cold and lack of food in some of their habitats including sheds and garages.

The council provides a pest control service to both domestic and commercial rate payers. The council area takes in about 160,000 domestic properties.

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Rats - 42 tons of poison to purge island of rats

 

Desperate measure to save Lord Howe Island's native species
By Kathy Marks in Sydney

Lord Howe, an idyllic island off the Australian mainland, carefully conserves its natural treasures. The World Heritage-listed chunk of rock has strict quarantine laws, and limits the number of tourists who may visit. But its unique birds, insects and plants are under threat from an implacable foe: the black rat. Accidentally introduced in 1918 when a ship ran aground, rats are blamed for the extinction of five endemic bird species.

Wildlife experts warn that 13 other native birds, two reptiles, five plants and numerous invertebrates are at risk. Rats are also a threat to the vital tourism industry, which relies on the island's pristine image.

Now Lord Howe, 500 miles north-east of Sydney, has decided to rid itself of rats and mice - and has put together one of the most radical pest-eradication programmes ever attempted. If the plan is approved, the island will be blitzed with poison from the air.

In order to protect local wildlife, entire populations of native birds will be caught and kept in cages for 100 days for their own protection. All cows and chickens will be slaughtered or shipped to the mainland beforehand, while dog owners will be offered muzzles for their pets, and parents will be advised to keep a close eye on their children.

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Rats! - A serving of rodent

 

Source: TRIBUNE-REVIEW
By Brad Bumsted

Most Pennsylvanians would not be surprised to hear there are rats in the state Capitol. Since the 2005 middle-of-the-night pay grab there's been a growing awareness.

But rodents of a different sort were feasting at the Capitol cafeteria and it's hard to fathom how the employees who work there, and their managers, missed them.

On Dec. 17, inspectors from the state Department of Agriculture conducted a belated inspection of the cafeteria, where state officials from the governor on down eat lunch or breakfast. Schoolchildren from across the state eat there while touring the Capitol.

What the inspectors found was appalling - a "severe rodent infestation."

There were "rodent droppings too numerous to count throughout the entire facility," including areas where food is prepared and served.

There were mouse droppings "in bins with utensils, on choppers, surfaces of slicers and mixers, and in a bin with clean table cloths and aprons," according to the inspection report.

Moreover, employees apparently were eating in the dishroom area and some weren't following hand-washing procedures. "Black residue, pink slime" was observed on the interior of the ice machine bins, the report stated.

The cafeteria was shut down over Christmas and re-opened Monday last to a sparse crowd after the violations were corrected.

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Rodent Control - Man's battle vs. the rat goes high-tech

 

Source: L.A. Times
By Jeff Spurrier

Mousetraps aren't just a snap anymore. Some try to kill humanely. One will even send an e-mail of a kill.

It's hard not to admire the common house mouse, Mus musculus. Upon setting up a new home, it neatly separates kitchen, bedroom and toilet areas. It has evolved to make its own vitamin C, and it's sensible enough to fear not only black lights (possibly because a mouse's urine has a fluorescent glow) but also rats (Musicide is common).

Males are bucks. Females are does. A baby mouse is called a pinky.

If you tickle a mouse, it laughs.

It's all so cute, but there is a reason why the word "mouse" comes from mus, a Sanskrit word for "thief." The creature may have been worshiped in ancient Greece, kept as a pet in China and eaten as a remedy for stomachache by the pharaohs, but today most of us just want it gone -- dead, or at least out of our homes (no small feat when it can squeeze through cracks just a quarter-inch wide).

Civilizations dating to ancient Italy have tried to keep out the mouse. The Romans put strawberry oil in candles because the animal doesn't like the smell. By the 1800s, killing rodents had nearly become a science as Victorian inventors tinkered with hand-built devices for impaling, decapitating, crushing, suffocating or drowning the vermin. In 1897, the Little Nipper -- a cheaply fabricated spring-loaded trap that broke backbones and crushed skulls in three-hundredths of a second -- set a precedent in modern design. And the quest to build a better mousetrap has continued ever since.

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2 days till Christmas..oh forget it, its Christmas Eve!! - Pest Tips

 

So tonight is the big night, weather you are hosting a holiday party or attending one, be sure to keep things tidy to avoid unwanted holiday visitors!

What can be lurking around your tree?

It is the season for Ants, Termites and Rodents, these 3 Grinches want to ruin your Christmas so take a stand by doing the following:

Rodents:

  • Make sure all access points are sealed up, primarily around plumbing that comes into the house.
  • All doors are fitted with door sweeps
  • Excess card board and news paper is not stacked in side your garage or shed. 
  • Trim trees and shrubs back from your home

 Ants:

  • Seal around plumbing under sinks
  • Seal around electrical outlets
  • Keep food preperation areas are free from food particles
  • Cover food left out over night
  • Keep fire wood away from your home
  • Keep card board away from your home
  • Tend to any water leaks 
Remember, for infestations Call Clark!

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Pest Proofing This Winter Can Keep Rodents and Other Pests Away

 

National Pest Management Association Offers Tips to Protect Homes from Pests in Cold Weather

Press Release Source: National Pest Management Association (NPMA)

FAIRFAX, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--For many homeowners, pest proofing is a chore relegated to the warmer months of the year. But many pests gain entry into homes in the winter as they seek shelter from the cold weather. In fact, according to the National Pest Management Association (NPMA), rodents alone invade an estimated 21 million homes in the U.S. each winter.

With 24% of homeowners reporting mice infestations specifically in the winter, they are among the top pest issues of the season. Mice and rats spread diseases like Salmonella and Hantavirus when they contaminate food, and bring fleas, ticks and lice indoors. Rodents can also cause serious structural damage by chewing through wood and electrical wiring.

Other winter invaders pose health threats, as well. Cockroaches and ants contaminate food sources, and cockroaches can trigger asthma attacks in children. Spiders bite when they feel threatened, causing serious reactions in some people.

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