Why are there so many rats in NYC?
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Why are there so many rats in NYC?



Rats in New York City are quite prevalent, especially in the populated places. For some time now, nobody has been able to determine how many rats are in New York City, but the common myth says that there are at least four rats for every person in the city. However, it was found out that there is probably about one rat for every four people.

Most of the rats in the city are brown rats, also known as the Norway rat. Their average weight is 350 grams for males and 250 grams for females. An adult rat may squeeze within gaps and holes that are at least a quarter of an inch big. And the rat is capable of surviving any fall from up to 12 meters or treading in water for three days. Every litter has at least 12 kittens. The rats are able to mate when they reach two or three months, and they may produce a new litter every two months. The rats may live for at least one year, so these mating habits and the lifespan explain some of why there are so many rats living on the streets of New York City.

The rats in the city carry different pathogens which may cause fever, vomiting and diarrhea, mostly in children. The pathogens that the rats carry include Leptospira, E.Coli, Salmonella and other bacteria.

Complaints about the rodents in New York City may be made by dialing 3-1-1. Property owners who fail an inspection due to rats may receive the order of commission, and they will have only five days in order to correct such problem. Otherwise the owner of the property is billed for the extermination and clean up by the Health Department.

The rats are not often seen in the daylight as they are most active at night. The black rat and brown rat were commonly found in the city. As time has passed, the brown rats became aggressive and displaced the black rats. They can attack or kill them to get shelter and food. After sometime, the brown rats replaced the black ones completely and now the population is completely brown. The brown rat is 16 to 20 inches long and is gray or brown. They are nocturnal and may sleep at least 10 hours during daylight hours.

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