Village of Masset councillor Bret Johnston raised a concern about an increase in rodent complaints at the regular council meeting on April 27, 2020. (Pixabay photo)

Village of Masset councillor raises concern about increase in rodent complaints

Councillor Bret Johnston asked staff to research rodent control educational material

Village of Masset staff are researching rodent control after a councillor reported receiving an increase in rat complaints from residents.

Councillor Bret Johnston raised the issue at the April 27 regular meeting and plans to bring a report back to council about potential educational material that can be included in village publications.

“We’ve got a neighbour three doors down from us and she had a couple [rats],” Johnston told the Observer, adding that at least two other residents also made complaints. “There are little pockets of them around … here and I would rather there weren’t.”

ALSO READ: Rat re-invasions highlight need for islands-wide biosecurity

He thinks the rodents recently lost their homes when a trailer on Highway 16 between the Causeway and the airport was demolished, causing them to venture out in search of new shelter.

“What seems to have happened is some buildings have been demolished … so obviously they’ve lost their habitats,” he said. “So then they’ve gone from where they regularly were to somewhere new.”

While the Village of Masset is not responsible for dealing with rodents on private property, Johnston said he hopes they will be able to ramp up education for property owners.

For example, he said cutting tall grass helps reduce habitat for rodents around residential homes, as well as raising wood piles off of the ground and sealing openings in buildings.

“My biggest concern is people putting out poison bait and somebody’s kids getting into it or pets,” Johnston said, adding that he doesn’t want to lose any eagles to poisoning. “You want to be cautious around stuff like that.”

In the meantime, he suggested residents research the dos and don’ts of rodent control on the Canadian government website, canada.ca.

ALSO READ: Rats to be attacked from the air

Do you have something to add to this story or something else we should report on? Email:
karissa.gall@blackpress.ca.


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