Apparent Increase in Rat Population

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NASSAU, Bahamas – An apparent increase in the rodent population in Nassau is causing serious concern, according to the Minister of Health and Social Development Dr. the Hon. Hubert Minnis.

Dr. Minnis told the House of Assembly on Wednesday (October 10, 2007) that rats grow where there is an excess of food, and he finds it “most disheartening” when there is a proliferation of chicken boxes, hamburger wrappings and other discarded food items along the sides of streets.

His comment on the seemingly growing rat problem was in response to a question raised by St. Cecilia MP Cynthia Pratt, who wanted to know if over 400 rats were killed during the recent clean-up of the straw market on Bay Street and who remarked on high rat populations in areas such as Carmichael, St. Cecilia and Kemp Road.

Minister Minnis said the number of rats killed during the recent straw market clean-up was in excess of 200.

“Until we change the entire educational attitude of the individual we will continue to be plagued by this problem,” said the Health Minister. “But with the whole idea of the zoning concept, we will be able with our inspectors, to identify the hot spots and deal with it appropriately.

“All of that is a part of the mechanism. It is an entire clean-up process but at the same time we will still have the attitudinal problem that has to be dealt with,” he said