CTA to put Rats on Birth Control
Chicago Transit Authority, also known as CTA, is resorting to different methods to stop the reproduction of rats, which are quickly overtaking the city. However, what they have in mind isn’t a simple trap such as using cheese as bait. What they have in mind is a way to stop the problem at its roots, using a new type of technology – birth control.
Chicago was named the “Rattiest City” in America by Pest Control company Orkin based on the number of rodent treatments that CTA has performed in the last year. CTA alone has spent over $500,000 on pest control annually. Even though CTA insists that pest control is not an issue, they have still been trying to combat it. Brown Norway Rats, the most common species of rodent in Chicago, are the ones causing most problems. They can carry infected fleas or ticks on their bodies which can harm pets, and sometimes they may even bite humans.
This new technology, named ContraPest, is a semi-liquid type of bait manufactured by the Arizona company SenesTech, and will sterilize the rats after they have eaten it. Female rats lose their eggs, and male rats develop problems with their testicles. While ContraPest will not actually kill or harm the rats, it does cause full sterility after roughly eight to twelve weeks. After a three-month study was done on the product, it showed a 43% decline in population, which shows the treatment to be effective.