Monday, January 22, 2018

Rats Are Invading Paris

No one seems to know quite what to make of it, so we will just report the facts. The City of Lights, one of the most beautiful cities in the world, a leading tourist destination, Paris is infested with rats. I do not know for sure but I suspect that Paris has more rats than New York.

Of course, it seems slightly perverse for two cities to compete over how many rats they have. Apparently, it’s the food, tossed away by restaurants, that attracts the rats. So, Paris has more rats because it offers them better leftovers.

Anyway, the Daily Mail reports the story:

Horrific footage of a mass build-up of savage rats who ‘jump for the throat’ has caused shock in Paris.

Le Parisien, the French capital’s local paper, on Sunday published a video of scores of the creatures massing in a dustbin.

It was taken on the banks of the River Seine, in the centre of all the most popular tourist spots, including Notre Dame Cathedral and the Orsay art gallery.

This has been getting worse during the past year.

‘For the past year, there’s been a proliferation of rats in all areas bordering the Seine,’ a council worker says on the video.

‘A colleague told me that a rat jumped at his throat, and another towards his arm. To my knowledge, there haven’t been any bites for the moment, but we shouldn’t be waiting for a tragedy.’

What is the municipal government doing to solve the problem? It instituted an extermination program last September, budgeted at less than $2,000,000. If you honestly think that a couple of million euros will exterminate the rats,  you are dreaming:

A £1.4 million extermination programme was launched last September, with areas closed off during the killings, but it has by no means proved successful.

There are now so many rats that Roma crime gangs have been seen using dead ones to intimidate tourists while trying to steal from them.

For your information, Roma people are what we would call gypsies. 

Apparently, the rats are everywhere:

Tourists including hundreds from Britain regularly report sightings of the creatures all over the city, including gardens around the Louvre, and even scuttling along restaurant floors.

Council spokesman Mao Peninou said: ‘All the departments involved have faced the problem head on.’

Paris is the most popular tourist city in the world, and the biggest foreign visitor group are the British. 

Of course, we do not want to poison the rats. It would be environmentally unfriendly. Then again, rats are living beings. Rodent beings, but living nonetheless. How dare we think of exterminating them? 

At least, Parisians love all of God’s creatures equally and are committed to the environment.


James said...

Oh, they're talking about animals! But I thought there was mostly frogs in Paris. I'm confused.

sestamibi said...

Mao Peninou??!!? And yet, why should I be surprised.

Sam L. said...

I just wonder which arondissements (sp?)have the most rats. Perhaps the city government could pay a bounty for dead rats; though then they'd have to have an incinerator or some secure storage area from which they couldn't easily be stolen and be turned in again.

The Knight of the Mirrors said...

"There are over 20,000 rats in New York City. And those are just the ones I know personally."

Yuri Nahl said...

In Chicago they have roving bands of coyotes to help with the rat problem.