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Oh, rats! Pesky rodents continue migration to 'food rich' suburban York Region

Orkin Canada's 2021 Top 25 Ratties Ontario Cities list includes Richmond Hill, Markham and two neighbourhoods in Vaughan
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Richmond Hill has been named among the most rat infested cities in Ontario, according to Orkin Canada. 

The pest control company annually releases a top 25 Rattiest Ontario Cities list, ranking cities based on the number of residential and commercial rodent treatments they performed between Aug. 1, 2020 and July 31, 2021. 

Richmond Hill has the dubious honour of climbing up the list from No. 20 last year.

Richmond Hill made the top 10, ranking seventh on the list after No. 1 Toronto, No. 2 Mississauga, No. 3 Scarborough, No. 4 Ottawa, No. 5 North York and No. 6 Etobicoke. 

Markham also made the list at No. 11 and Vaughan neighbourhoods of Thornhill and Concord were ranked 16th and 21st respectively. 

Orkin reported that pandemic-related lockdowns meant people were eating at home more and therefore producing more food waste. 

The company said that the abundance of food could cause the rodent population to increase, which is why people may notice an increase of rats and mice in residential areas. 

Orkin also said that rodents have moved from “resource-depleted urban centres to food-rich suburban areas.” 

With the cold weather approaching, the company encourages you to seal up holes in foundations, windows and doors, avoid clogged gutters, and be diligent about keeping garbage away from the home.

Here are five tips to help prevent rodents from entering your home:    

  1. Seal cracks or holes with caulk or foam and install weather stripping around windows and doors.  
  2. Keep shrubbery at least a metre away from the home exterior. 
  3. Eliminate moisture sources, such as clogged gutters. 
  4. Keep food preparation areas clean inside the home and thoroughly clean spills and crumbs.  
  5. Clean trash cans regularly and ensure they are covered tightly. 


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Elizabeth Keith

About the Author: Elizabeth Keith

Elizabeth Keith is a general assignment reporter. She graduated from Carleton University with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2017. Elizabeth is passionate about telling local stories and creating community.
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