A video of a swarm of rats in downtown Vancouver has gone viral, sparking a spike in rat sightings across the region.
Both rats and mice are on the rise in all areas of Metro Vancouver, and many people are concerned about this trend.
However, not everyone is unhappy with this development. For pest control experts like Derek Thorsell, business is booming.
“I would say 90 per cent of the calls I received over the winter were all about rats and mice,” said Torsell, district manager for Critter Control Vancouver.
Art Phillips Park, just outside Vancouver’s Burrard SkyTrain station, where the video was filmed, is a hotspot for pests.Despite traps being set, rats have been seen emerging from cracks and crevasses in the ground.
Saussell said there are many reasons why Vancouver is seeing more rats than usual.
“In an urban environment like that, their natural enemies don’t really exist,” he said.
Pest control experts also blame an unusually warm winter and the state’s ban last year of certain rodenticides considered harmful to other animals.
For rodents, Thorsell says it all comes down to environment and survival.
“If they have a source of food, a source of water, and a place to call home, they will congregate there,” he says. “So if you eliminate those things, the population will decline.”
Thorsell says if you see one, there’s always another. And when it comes to prevention, she advises not to leave clutter or pet food outside your home. It’s also best to keep your trash cans secure, he says.
It is also important to seal any holes, no matter how small, that rodents can enter outside your home.
“For example, a mouse can get into anything the size of a dime,” he says. “A rat, usually the size of a quarter. If you have a hole like that in your house, don’t worry, the entrance is open.”