October 31, 2013 - 5:09 PM
KELOWNA - What started out as rumour is now being supported by some facts, but the Regional District believes that the recent focus on rats in the Okanagan is neither unusual nor cause for alarm.
“From our perspective, these instances are very isolated and there is nothing that the District is considering at this time,” says RDCO Communications Officer Bruce Smith. “It’s just not a widespread problem.”
Jeff Cameron, manager for the Buckerfield’s in Kelowna agrees, despite seeing a 30 per cent increase in rat trap and poison sales from their location this year alone.
“It is something we are seeing more and more of but mostly from rural areas where rats are a part of life,” says Cameron. “You’ll never be able to stop it altogether.”
Cheryl Erikson lives in Glenrosa and says this is the first year she has noticed any rodent activity in her area. Still, she is unconcerned because the reason for the influx is obvious—a neighbour's compost pile.
“We put out a couple traps this year for the first time and caught two in 24 hours. I have grandchildren that come to my house so obviously I don’t want rats. It’s something you have to deal with, not something you want to ignore.”
Lorri Allan is a customer service representative for Orkin, a pest control company. She says the Kelowna office has received around 10 per cent more rodent calls this year, but that the problem is not bad enough to warrant the kind of attention it has been receiving lately from the media.
“You’d expect that if this was a big huge problem we’d be getting a lot more calls, whether in the city or not," she says. "We just haven’t.”
Bruce Smith says that if residents start to notice rats in their area they need to deal with it themselves, either by purchasing traps themselves or by calling a reputable pest management company.
To contact the reporter for this story, email Adam Proskiw at firstname.lastname@example.org, call (250) 718-0428 or tweet @AdamProskiw.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013