Put a stop to this horrific idea before it begins
JOINING THIS GROUP ADDS YOUR NAME TO THOSE OF US SAYING NO TO THE NIGHT RAT PROJECT AND YES TO FINDING A NATURAL AND MORE HUMANE METHOD OF RODENT CONTROL.
A proposal has been put forward by Charles Maisel of “Men at the Side of the Road” that unemployed workers are used as rat catchers, in so-called hot spots in and around the metropole area of Cape Town as a clean-up proposal for from now until 2010. To ensure that this project will be "financially beneficial" for the city they intend bringing in rat catcher experts from India to train the men.
These rat catchers go out on the streets with torches and clubs, mesmerize (apparently) the animals with the torch and then callously bludgeon them to death. They are talking of a "pay per dead rat" system.
Jack Black (Queen Victoria's rat catcher) bred domestic rats for the same purpose (to get paid for killing them under the guise that they were wild rats).
Our view is that the unemployed should rather be used to clean unhygienic areas that will lower the rat population and further to that, should any extermination be contemplated, that the use of humane methods are not negotiable. We have suggested the use of owl boxes and have put Bree from the owl box project in touch with them and we have suggested that they deploy (managed neutered, spayed and vaccinated annually) feral cat colonies. There are enough unwanted feral cat colonies that could be very useful and wanted in this arena instead of being put down.
We are also looking at means of breaking the breeding cycle of the rats using contraceptives in food, strategically placed, that would be non toxic but along with the sanitation and natural methods, would effectively control the numbers of wild rats.
On a final note: Apparently (I do not have this as the gospel truth) in response to the question of what makes clubbing rats ok…………….Mr. Maisel's PR person apparently responded that “she can’t understand the fuss, as seals are clubbed all the time”
1. This will not solve the problem as rats breed faster then they can be clubbed to death
2. More holistic ways of dealing with the rodent population must be found