Yuma residents concerned over rat infestation

YUMA, Ariz. – Yuma resident Conrad Amavisca says his neighborhood near Eighth St. and Ave. B  has been infested with rats. “My neighbors next door have rats, neighbors across the street, a lot of people in the neighborhood are having issues with rats”, said Amavisca.

He says he and his family have lived in the area for three years and the problem only started a couple months ago. “This is head to tail how big we found the rats so far”, said Amavisca.

The family gave pictures to us showing a few of the rats they say they have caught. The family says the rats keep coming and sometimes they may catch at least two a night. Most nights they set up traps to try and catch the pests but they say it hasn’t been slowing them down much. “They are getting really more smart with the mouse traps”, said Amavisca.

We spoke to the county who told us this case is a nuisance on private property and would need to be handled by a private exterminator. So we called up Jessie Cockrell, the manager for Ram Pest in Yuma, he says rat calls in general are going up. “We’ve had about a 20 percent increase in calls from last year to this year”, said Cockrell.

And the reason may be how fast they can reproduce. “A female can have several litters a year and each litter can have 6 to 8 young so they populate very quickly”, said Cockrell. And what could make matters worse going into fall and winter. “When it starts to cool off you see more activity”, said Cockrell.

For Amavisca, he doesn’t know what they will do to stop the rats at this point but for now he says he’s going to be cautious of whats lurking around his home. “Some can carry disease and I don’t want to get that disease from them so I make sure these rats aint gonna get near me”, said Amavisca.

Cockrell says service to exterminate rats would probably start around $125 but could easily be hire depending on property size and the severity of the infestation.

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