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Last Updated: Friday January 05 2007 15:28 GMT

Pesky rats are on the rise

A rat

Rats are on the rise in the UK, causing pest controllers to worry about the risk to people's health.

There's a survey done of rats and how many people call out rat catchers every year, and this time it showed that the number of rat-spottings has shot up!

Loads more people reported seeing brown rats, particularly in the summer which used to be rare.

Experts think this is because there's more fast food rubbish and bird food around for the rats to feed on.

People also reported seeing loads more mice in their homes, the survey showed.

Other reasons for the rise in rats could be:

  • More councils make people pay for rat-catching, so less people report it and therefore they don't get killed
  • People don't use compost bins properly - so rats can get in the warm compost to have babies in
  • There's more empty old houses, which rats can live and nest in


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