Moncton residents blame construction for growing rat problem
Moncton is experiencing another rat problem.
Some say it may have to do with all of the summer construction, but city crews say they assess the underground before any work begins.
Some feel the city should be on the hook to fix the problem. It's an issue that's leaving residents uneasy.Some don't even want to take out the garbage.
"I went to the end of the street, put the bag on the ground, and then I saw a huge rat, and I mean huge," said Moncton resident Katie Friars. "It was circling around in the garbage bag, it was disgusting."
Danny Lirette says even keeping his property well-kept isn't enough.
"They're coming in the front, under the garage," Lirette said. "Yesterday, I had a friend over who pointed out a rat going up my steps."
Professionals say their phones are ringing off the hook.
"We think due to all the construction that's going on in the greater Moncton area, we're starting to see a lot more activity, resulting in more calls," said Sean Rollo of Orkin Canada.
A policy was put in place by the city two years ago to try to lessen the problem during construction.
"When we're going to do a street over, we bring in the pest control experts," said Ward 3 Coun. Bryan Butler. "They have a look to see if there's any possible big nests, and if they think they hit a big nest, they'll come in and start doing their job."
Experts say there's a few reasons why the rats may be coming around.
"(They're) displaced from their homes, so they're seeking somewhere else, or it's something on the property that's really attracting them to that area, whether it be a food source, water source, or even just shelter," Rollo said.
Friars says she's afraid taking action could also put her pets at risk.
"When you want to control the rats, you don't want your animals getting into any traps or poison," Friars said.
Some don't feel they should be on the hook to fix the problem.
"I think the city needs to deal with it, rather than individual homeowners forking out the money all across the city, for a problem that the city has allowed to increase," Lirette said.
But the city is only responsible for publicly managed property.
"If it's on your property, city policy is, you have to look after it yourself," Butler said.
Residents are being asked to do their part by keeping their properties clean and to report any rat sightings so city officials can map out where the rodents are residing.
Pest control experts say the best thing you can do to try and avoid the problem is to take a walk around your property, make sure your garbage is completely sealed and covered and to get rid of anything the rodents may use as a shelter or a food source.
Dog droppings and bird feeder seeds can also attract the rats as well.
With files from CTV Atlantic's Kate Walker.