Chicago just topped a new ranking of major metropolitan cities — but it’s a list the city doesn’t want to infest.
Orkin Pest Control released its annual report on Monday, ranking the “50 Worst Cities,” from most rodent-filled to least.
And for the 8th consecutive year, Chicago, unfortunately, was crowned n°1
“Each fall, mice and other rodents invade approximately 21 million homes in the United States,” Orkin said in a press release. “They usually enter homes between October and February in search of food, water and shelter from the cold.”
Earlier this month, Doug Taron, curator of biology and vice president of research and conservation at the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum warned of more mice entering Chicago-area homes for the same raison.
“Mice are really trying to get indoors this time of year,” Taron said. “That’s when a lot of people will notice they have a mouse problem as the weather gets colder. And they’re looking for, you know, shelter. And in some cases people also provide them with inadvertent food. So there’s a lot for a mouse to do indoors at this time of year.”
But just because rodents want to be inside your home doesn’t mean you have to invite them. According to Orkin, rodents like rats and mice pose various health problems and can cause structural damage.
“Not only are mice and rats a nuisance, but they’ve been known to spread a variety of dangerous diseases, including salmonella and hantavirus,” said Ben Hottel, an Orkin entomologist. “Beyond health issues, rodents can cause serious structural damage with their strong jaws and digging ability. They have oversized front teeth for gnawing, and teeth adapted for chewing on a variety of items, including electric wires, water pipes and gas pipes.”
The ranking, according to Orkin, is based on the “number of new rodent treatments performed from September 1, 2021 to August 31, 2022” in metropolitan areas for residential and commercial treatments.
Chicago came in first on the list for the eighth straight time, Orkin says. New York took second place and Los Angeles came in third.
Here are which cities round out the top 10 “worst misses”:
- New York
- Los Angeles
- washington d.c.
- San Francisco
- philadelphia cream
According to Orkin, signs to look out for rats or mice inside your home can be: rodent droppings in kitchen cabinets or under sinks, gnaw marks on wood, wires and baseboards , nests made of shredded paper or packing materials, “smear marks” of black grease or dirt along floors or walls, and strange, rushing noises along the wall or in the attic.
Sound familiar? If you live in Chicago, it is possible.
Oh the rats.