There was a time when rats in the East Village was hardly considered news. But since the city stopped laying down poison this summer, the rat population in Tompkins Square Park has exploded.
The city stopped laying down the poison after a rare breed of hawks were cited in the area, opting to take other steps to try to keep the population in check, including putting lids on the garbage cans.
But when PIX 11 News visited Tuesday afternoon… we found dozens of rats in broad daylight.
Our visit was prompted by a whimsical mock movie trailer by Fordham law-student-to-be Aaron Goldblum, who says he got enough video for the trailer after spending less than an hour in the park in the middle of the day.
During our visit, we saw turf wars between rats and pigeons and between rats and squirrels. The rats were winning.
Making matters worse the rat infestation has taken over the grounds in Tompkins Square Park that include a children’s playground and a dog run. Garrett Rosso, a dog owner, told PIX 11 News dog owners fill rat holes in the morning and that several dogs in the area have already come down with rat-borne diseases, which can be fatal. Rosso fears children could also be at risk.
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