Botanical Gardens infested with rats

  • Running the show: the Department of Health says the Vector Control Team has laid as many as 20 bait boxes to ensnare rats in Botanical Gardens

    Running the show: the Department of Health says the Vector Control Team has laid as many as 20 bait boxes to ensnare rats in Botanical Gardens

A plague of rats in the Botanical Gardens has been tackled by government pest controllers after complaints from the public.

Parents said rats have scared park users near the children’s play area in the Paget park, which is Bermuda’s biggest.

A mother of two who took her children to the hedge maze near the playground added the rats were “frightening, especially when you have little kids”.

The woman, who asked not to be named, said: “We saw it last week; it was just one, but it was a large rat.

“Another mum jumped when she saw it. It ran off into the bushes in front of us.”

Another concerned parent called the Government’s pest controllers after she saw “brave, large and numerous” rats on several visits to the gardens.

She said: “The park looks amazing at the moment so it’s not because of anything there.

“I go there with my children frequently. It’s a popular place. I’ve been noticing rats around there for a few weeks.”

She said she had spotted vermin around the banyan tree and playground “running along the ground, I couldn’t see where they were coming from. They were just around the place”.

“I reported it to Vector Control; because it’s up to the public. I do it for feral chickens and mosquitoes as well; they’re the resource to take care of it.”

The woman, who also asked not to be named, said other people had already flagged up the problem and the area had been baited.

Government pest control staff warned parents to make sure youngsters did not play in undergrowth. The Vector Control service said in the summer that reports of rats had increased near trash collection points.

The problem was blamed on residents putting out garbage early, despite the once-a-week collection schedule.

A government spokeswoman said: “The Department of Health’s Vector Control Team is aware of an issue in the Botanical Gardens in relation to rodents.

“Officers are monitoring the situation and carrying out treatments as and when necessary. There are approximately 20 bait boxes in place within the gardens.

“A significant issue in the control of rodents within the gardens is that people are leaving food scraps behind them, this is a significant food source for the rodents.

“The department would like to appeal to all visitors to act responsibly and not to leave any garbage including food scraps behind them when they visit the gardens.”

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Published Oct 18, 2018 at 8:00 am (Updated Oct 18, 2018 at 7:00 am)

Botanical Gardens infested with rats

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