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DPW responds to McElderry Park neighborhood to help with rat infestation

Posted at 5:28 PM, Sep 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-18 17:28:56-04

BALTIMORE — What a difference 24-hours makes. After WMAR-2 News reported on a rat infestation in the 500 block of North Belnord Avenue, Baltimore City responded with help.

"Last night I was hoping they'd show up," said homeowner Regina Willis. "Sure enough they were here this morning."

Unlike yesterday, there were no rats to interrupt our interview. Our cameras saw no rats in the alley, only pest control technician Terry Stringfield.

"While yes, this is a rat problem it's also a people problem," said Stringfield. "People can't leave trash out days in advance of garbage collection, especially without lids."

So what did Stringfield and his crew members do to help remedy the situation?

"We inspected each of the properties around 510 North Belnord and looked for rat burrows," he said.

On one property as many as 10 burrows were found.

"This shows there's an infestation," said Stringfield.

After identifying the burrows, crews flagged them and laid down poison.

"The Ditrac powder is awesome. It works," said Stringfield. "Rats and mice, like I said, clean themselves constantly like a cat. Once they run through it, it has no taste no smell. They don’t even know they have it on them. They carry it back to the burrow where the family is and they rub up against each other, clean themselves off ingest it. It causes head hemorrhaging and then they die."

The city told WMAR that pest control crews will be back in the area in 10 to 14 days.

"We'll re-administer poison to the same areas, close the holes, come back and do a visual inspection to see if we have any holes reopen. Check for activity. If we do have activity, we do the process over again."

As for Regina Willis, she's just glad the only rats she'll be seeing are dead ones.

"I just want to say thank you all for stepping in because I didn’t know how to resolve the problem by myself," said Willis. "It was a big issue with me trying to control the rat population by myself when I didn’t have any help."