Invasion of rats: in the USA they found out why rodents began to settle in cars more often

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Rat infestation: USA found out why rodents became more frequent settle in cars

Scientists say that this phenomenon has become another consequence of the coronavirus epidemic.

In the past two years, New York auto repair shops have become more contacted by drivers who are facing problems related to rats, writes The New York Times.

“New cars, old cars – now everyone comes with these rat problems ,” says Ozzy Dayan, a mechanic at Manhattan Auto Repair. “It gets me a lot of work, but it's disgusting.”

According to the mechanic, sometimes you have to remove half of the engine components to get to the rodents. As a result, his customers have to pay impressive amounts for repairs.

Invasion of rats: in the USA they found out why rodents began to settle in cars more often

What does the coronavirus have to do with it?

This phenomenon is partly explained by the increase in the number of cars. The New York State Department of Motor Vehicles reported that new vehicle registrations increased by 19% from the summer of 2019 to 2021. This is attributed, among other things, to the coronavirus epidemic, during which public transport was limited.

The pandemic also affected the behavior of rodents. During the lockdown, the food supply for rats on the streets was reduced. To survive, they began to make brazen daytime forays to dumpsters, and then bring prey to new homes – warm cars, under the hoods of which rodents arrange nests.

“Rats can very quickly adapt to changes in human behavior” , says biology professor Jason Munshi-South.

Fordham University researcher Michael Parsons notes that now the behavior of people has returned to normal, but the rats did not return to their old habits. Instead, the rodents have expanded their tactics, such as attacking other urban animals more frequently. And the car has become a habitual refuge for them, where they can safely eat their prey.

Some auto mechanics pay attention to another factor: rodents are lured by soy-based automotive wiring insulation.

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