In Hollywood you can tour the Homes of the Stars, but the Rat Tour is only offered in the Big Apple! The Rat Tour was the culminating event of last Friday’s town hall meeting hosted by NY State Senator Bill Perkins to highlight NYC’s new rat eradication initiative. Held in Perkins’ 125th Street office, the meeting featured “Rat Czar” Bobby Corrigan, the city’s noted rodentologist.
Dragging a dead rat from his backpack and tossing it into the air, Corrigan got the meeting off to a quirky start. “I caught this rat myself in New York City, so there’s one less out there for sure,” he joked. Corrigan, who has been stalking rats for 35 years, said, “I have a lot of respect for this mammal.” Rats are smart and capable of learning from experience. However, they also destroy enough food worldwide to feed more than 200 million people a year.
NYC is populated with Norway rats which range from 1 to 1.5 feet long and weigh about a pound. Highly adaptable, they can squeeze through a hole the size of a quarter, jump 3 feet vertically and fall 5 stories without injury. “Rats are not as big as alley cats,” claimed Corrigan, who attributed the myth to the fact that rats puff up their fur when frightened which can appear to double their size.