CALIFORNIA—On Monday, May 9, 2022, multiple news agencies reported on a Sherman Oaks home that was so infested with rats that the owners left. They were in the attic, on the counters, in the bedrooms, and one day beside the bed. The homeowners had a pest control company come out and they attempted to irradicate the rats to no avail.
A local contractor by the name of Samson Maymon purchased the home to renovate. The home is currently blue in color and surrounded by overgrown bushes and underbrush. Maymon told a Fox News reporter that, “In order for me to do the demolition or any renovation, I need to get rid of the rats first.”
According to RatsofCalifornia.com, the rat problem is not isolated to any one city, the state. The infestation is statewide.
On October 12, 2021, Terminex listed the most rat-infested cities in America. Los Angeles, California is number one. In 2019, Los Angeles was number 2 in the nation. San Francisco is number four. Sacramento is number 18, San Diego is number 26, and Fresno is number 41.
According to Terminex, this ranking was created by compiling rodent-specific data from Terminix branches across the country. The rankings represent Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) with the most leads received between September 1, 2020, and August 31, 2021.
While Terminex lists Los Angeles as number one, Orkin lists Los Angeles as number two, and Chicago, Illinois as number one. New York stays in the top three as well. Orkin claims New York has two million rats in the state, the equivalent of about one per human in population.
Extermination specialists shared different views on the cause of the infestation. One pest control company blamed COVID for it indicating that people were not eating and making food trash in the cities during the shutdowns. The rats moved to where the food trash was.
Another exterminator blamed California’s rat infestation on the growing homelessness. The conditions, materials, and trash are a haven for rats.
Rodent eradication specialists all agreed on what homeowners might do to make their property less inviting to the ever-growing rodent population. The specialist advises customers to clean up their brush and undergrowth from bushes and shrubs which is the same advice that what given when the state of California was consumed by wildfires in 2019.
Aa Animal Control company advises residents to inspect the entire home and seal all openings ½” and larger with steel mesh/steel wool. Then, set the metal traps and remove and dispose of the dead mice right away. Top pest specialists seem to agree that most importantly, remove what they’re after; food, shelter, and water.