Friday, September 12, 2008

Jackson Heights' rodent problem

During the past year and a half, Jackson Heights has been invaded by an influx of rodents, according to residents of the neighborhood.

Rats invade Jackson Heights

“On a regular basis we are getting complaints from residents,” said Giovanna Reid, district manager of Community Board 3, which includes Jackson Heights, East Elmhurst and North Corona. “We have a rodent infestation.”

Apart from being disgusting, rodents such as rats are known to carry diseases that can be transmitted to humans in many ways - through animal bite, contact with animal waste, consuming food or water contaminated by rodent waste or through parasites, which use rodents and humans as hosts. Breathing in dried rodent waste that is contaminated might also lead to disease transmission.

One of the things that attract rats is garbage - the number one source of food for them. Overflowing trashcans as well as rotten produce, Styrofoam food containers and coffee cups on the ground are a common sight at night on 73rd Street and other busy stretches of Jackson Heights.

The litter on the ground usually comes from the customers of outdoor food vendors, who stay open until the wee hours of the morning or some that remain open 24-hours. In addition, the gutters on these streets are also filled with garbage.

However, these streets are cleaned every day, but only between 7:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., which gives many opportunities for litter to accumulate during the night.

Meanwhile, Reid believes another factor in the neighborhood responsible for rodent activity is the heavy construction around the area.

“The problem is widening as they [the rodents] do move,” Reid said, explaining that the demolition makes the rodents disperse and find new places where they can live and eat.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

A-hem...
colorful, bustling, vibrant J.H.
pays the price for the unsanitary habits of its newly arrived
brothers and sisters.

Welcome to the streets of Calcutta!

A 3rd world coexisting around a landmarked district ...eh Mr. Saunders?

Anonymous said...

This is a very big problem in immigrant communities - services are cut and the the local transient population (with perhaps a different standard of cleanliness than mainstream America) is either clueless or don't care or, being illegal, have a different agenda than calling attention to themselves over garbage.

(311 Operator: What is your name? What is your address? Do you live in the basement at that address?)

Anonymous said...

We have a big problem in Astoria with the three day weekends. Recycles are kept on the sidewalks sometimes for two or three weeks.

Regular garbage piles up for a week.

We never saw rats until about 5 years ago. Now Astoria is crawling with them.

Our representatives don't care about anything south of Astoria Blvd or bellyache about Albany mistreating them so they cant deliver (to anyone but the developers, of course).

Anonymous said...

Services (like sanitation or sidewalks etc) in places like Ravenswood or Hunters Point are withheld until developers come in.

Official policy publically stated to residents when they have the odd moment to complain about overdevelopment.

THATS they way they do things in western Queens.

Anonymous said...

Go google India and hygiene...

Wade Nichols said...

Oh come now all you "racist" haters!

We must be "tolerant" and "respectful" of the wonderful cultural practices of our "gorgeous mosaic"!

The rats are simply a by-product of a local JH temple. The rats are probably a few strays from a JH branch of the Karni Mata temple in Deshnoke, India, in Rajastan.

So what if the locals are busy engaging in esoteric tantric sex rituals at night, or worshipping the rat goddess Karni Mata? We should be respectful of their "vibrant" culture.

It's us who should change our ways to accomodate our "vibrant" new comers to AmeriKa - not our saintly new comers who should adjust to our ways!

Shame on all of you!

Anonymous said...

We see this in sunnyside also. for some reason people don't mind living on streets filled with garbage, much of it food-related waste. It seems so strange to me to throw crap all around your neighborhood, but I guess it's just a cultural difference.

A few more garbage cans wouldnt hurt either.

Miles Mullin said...

What ever happened to anti-litter campaigns.

Culturally insentative?

Anonymous said...

I read somewhere Indians and Bangladeshis are very insensitive and almost oblivious to filth and dirt, if that's what you mean by cultural insensitivity.

Anonymous said...

I guess everyone who reads this blog can agree that the right course of action is ethnic cleansing? So someone start it. Let's show former Yugoslavia, Iraq, Darfur and any other third world country that followed that plan that Americans can do it better.

Should we get rid of the hispanics and hindis and then bring in the Italians and Irish again? Or should we burn it all and let good ol' American condos to develop that area for UN representatives?

Queens Crapper said...

Of course, here comes the stupidity. I guess we should just live with and be happy with the garbage, because calling attention to it and cleaning it up is likened to racism and ethnic cleansing by the tweeders. Sorry, that's an old song and dance that most people are tired of.

Lino New York said...

Rats do not discriminate, I live in Manhattan between Park and Madison aves -low 80s The rat situation here is INTENSE.

It has allways been a problem with high density and being so close to Central Park.

As a child in the early 1960s, we lived in a townhouse on east 72nd bet Mad and Fifth, insoluble rat problem. My mother was afraid that I would be bitten and after one died somewhere in the interstitial spaces just in time to stink-up our Thanksgiving dinner, we soon sold the place and moved to a modern apt.

I have a place over in Bangkok...if you think it's bad here....

Anonymous said...

Funny, I have lived in the Village off Fifth, the west side and in Yorkville while I was in school.

I don't recall seeing rats.

Queens? Infested. My landlord who owns the building and lived here his entire life (61 years) said it is bad and getting worse.