Quick Response By Health Dept. Helps Control Rat Woes

We’re glad to see the Chautauqua County Health Department moving quickly to control a rat infestation in Sherman.

The Chautauqua County Board of Health held a special meeting last week to discuss the situation, issuing a 24-hour order to the owners of the Farmers Mill property to see if the owners could deal with the problem. The owners were unable to do so, which gave the county the ability to step in and take the lead in eradicating the rodent infestation. The rats were left with a smorgasbord of food when a former feed mill in the village closed down. So far, neighbors say they haven’t seen the rats far from the former feed store.

Health Department officials have already contacted a pest control agency and will be at the site this week to inspect the property again and get a better understanding of just how bad the problem is. Having the county in the mix doesn’t mean the problem will go away overnight. Rats can have a seven or eight week gestation period, and Colleen Meeder, Sherman mayor, said the infestation has been a concern for a couple of months. That means baby rats are likely to begin being born in the building. Health Department and village officials also have to handle the infestation carefully so that the rats aren’t scared away from the feed mill and into the surrounding community.

Neighbors aren’t out of the woods yet, but we’re glad to see the Health Department and village moving quickly to deal with this problem.