Roof rats seem to be back in abundance, and city of Tempe officials once again are offering guidance and resources to those who may be affected.
South Tempe and other city residents are urged to pick up fruit and nuts from the ground, keep garbage containers covered, clean up pet waste, store bulk foods and pet foods in sealed, rat-proof containers, and harvest citrus promptly and completely.
To help control roof rats, residents can drop off quality fruit at Elks Scottsdale Lodge 2148, 6398 E. Oak St., Scottsdale, so it can be donated to food banks, senior centers, jails and other locations. Dropoffs are accepted Saturday mornings through March 26 from 8 a.m. to noon. Information about roof rats will be available from 9-10:30 a.m. at the same location.
Signs of roof rat activity include hollowed-out citrus or fruit, rat droppings, gnawing or scratching noises around home, damage to plastics, unsettled pets and damage to coverings on electrical and other wiring.
People who suspect they have roof rats should call Maricopa County Vector Control at 602-506-6616, leaving name, address, telephone number and location of the sighting.
If sightings occur, residents should work with their neighborhood or homeowner associations to set up neighborhood meetings or citrus cleanup dates.
Call Tempe’s Neighborhood Hotline at 480-350-8234 for more information on this process.