​NYC Turns the Tides on Rodents

​NYC Turns the Tides on Rodents

Our photo shoot took us to Columbus Park, near Chinatown, home to one of the highest concentration of rats in the New York City.
August 5, 2015, 7:49pm

From the column 'Photos From Beyond'

Despite posing a threat to cities and urban dwellers for centuries, there are few foolproof ways to get rid of rats—wherever people thrive, rats thrive. Now the tide is turning for the first time ever as NYC pulls out all the stops to combat these creatures, and it's actually working. We looked at rats as a public health issue: the diseases they spread, what the city is doing to fight them, and what rats are doing to fight back. To do this, we'll be going on rat hunts and talking to rodent control experts—including some who work for or advise the City of New York, as well as some who are vigilantes that hunt rats at night with dogs—about measures being taken to control these potentially deadly pests.

Our photo shoot took us to Columbus Park, near Chinatown, home to one of the highest concentration of rats in the New York City.

A local resident told us that his cat is an expert hunter. Here he is tired from a days chase.

The rats are often quite bold, making their way through the various closed off garden areas, but often in more public spaces—even in broad daylight.

Here, a rat is seen in one of the garden areas having just chased another away for a bit of food.

Trash on the street is a constant source of food for the rodents who find no shortage in the dense Chinatown neighborhood.

A rat trap in Columbus Park.

Neighboring Chinatown.

Scraps from street vendors littering the streets provide ample opportunity for the vermin to find sources of nutrition.