Progress seen in rat removal – The Westerly Sun


Recommended by Ronald Stiles, Published on June 25th, 2017

PAWCATUCK The rat population has decreased dramatically at a home found to be infested a few weeks ago, health officials said Friday.

Ryan McCammon, supervisor of environmental health for the Ledge Light Health District, which replaced the towns health department in late April, said the town was working with Terrance Holbrook, who co-owns the house at 1 Milan Terrace with Ronald Kutz. Holbrooks sister, Rebecca Holbrook, also resides at the home. In April, police received complaints about rats on the property, McCammon said. About June 1, Ledge Light issued a public health order for a licensed exterminator to assess the home, take steps to eradicate the rats, and eliminate items that attract rats, such as debris, bird feeders and standing water.

Griggs & Browne, a licensed exterminator from Waterford, was hired for abatement work and had removed about 50 dead rats from the property as of June 9, McCammon said.

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On June 9, McCammon and First Selectman Rob Simmons held a public meeting for area residents at the police station to go over preventive and abatement measures since the rats were spreading into surrounding neighborhoods.

On June 12, McCammon said he went door to door in the surrounding neighborhoods, including Frank Street, homes nearby on Broad Street, and Swan Street, to pass out information.

We canvassed the entire neighborhood so everyone has my card, he said.

McCammon reported Wednesday that Griggs & Browne has been visiting the home every three or four days to check the traps.

Last week, they went out to check the bait stations and there were no rats, so the population of rats over the last couple of weeks has been coming down, McCammon said.

Rats can breed quickly and the decrease could be simply an indication of a gestation period before the next round of rats, he cautioned.

To help with the removal of debris at the home, the Town of Stonington has provided a dumpster, which McCammon said has been filled and emptied at least once and possibly twice.

The town is committed to keep sending the dumpsters out there until we get the debris picked up, he said.

On Friday afternoon, McCammon reported he had met with Terrance Holbrook that morning and observed progress in the cleanup of the property.

I was happy to see that the carport area, which is just outside the house, had been cleared of all debris and one of the rooms inside the house had been cleared out and they were in the process of working on the rest of the areas, he said.

Fridays report from Griggs & Brown showed no rat activity inside the house and moderate activity outside the house, he said.

They didnt see any rats this time but they did see that some of the bait had been eaten and theres also the possibility that chipmunks or other things got into it, he said. Im glad to see were not getting as much activity at the property.

McCammon also said he hadnt received any reports of rat sightings from neighbors in the last week.

I talked to two people in the last week who both said they had seen rats in previous weeks but hadnt seen any in the last week, he said. Thats good but it doesnt necessarily mean theyre completely eliminated.

The town will continue to work with the property owner to expedite the clearing of debris, especially in the homes interior, he said.

I think weve turned a corner with this and weve been able to get a lot of the debris, McCammon said. Were not done yet, but its a really good first step.

For more information, contact McCammon at 860-535-5010 or go to http://www.ledgelighthd.org.

chewitt@thewesterlysun.com

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Progress seen in rat removal - The Westerly Sun

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