Rodent control in urban areas: An interdisciplinary approach

A. Soula Lambropoulos, Joshua B. Fine, Amy Perbeck, Donald Torres, Gregory E. Glass, Patrick McHugh, Elias A. Dorsey

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

In 1992, Baltimore Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke created the Rodent Control Committee to combat the increasing Norway rat population in Baltimore City. Following a pilot project, programs were conducted in two sections of the city from which high numbers of rat complaints had been reported. These three-month programs attacked the rodent problem via an integrated pest management approach that emphasized public education by trained community leaders and health department workers, increased community cleanup projects coordinated by the Bureau of Solid Water, and intensified baiting by the city's Rat Rubout Program. Direct intervention eliminated up to 90 percent of rat burrows present in the target neighborhoods. Follow-up surveys, however, showed that in neighborhoods with environmental factors favoring rat populations, reinfestations achieved preintervention levels within six months. Attempts to modify the behavior of residents, which is vital in reducing and eliminating rodent infestation, were generally unsuccessful.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12-17
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of environmental health
Volume61
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jan 1 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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