Neighbors say rats are taking over one East Haven neighborhood

New Haven

EAST HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH)– Frank Ettore is patching up holes around his home trying to keep the rats out. He says ever since construction started at the former East Haven High School, rats have been taking over the neighborhood.

Ettore said, “Due to the construction going on next door to us it is uprooting the rats and it is causing them to flee.”

The school has been empty for over 20 years. The city is getting ready to knock it down to put up new apartments. But neighbors say it’s bringing the unwanted guests in.

Former East Haven High School building

Dominic Scarpellino told News 8, “It’s been abandoned for years and now they’re getting ready to knock it down, and they’re looking for places to go.”

Frank Ettore added, “They’re still trying to get in to our home. They ate a hole along the side of my garage.”

And they say the rats aren’t shy.

Ettore added, “It’s causing them to flee and they’re going into several neighbors’ houses.”

Michael Pascucilla with the East Shore Health Department says pest control experts conducted a thorough inspection for rodents in February of this year. In the report they didn’t find any rodent activity in or outside the school.

Pascucilla said, “At this very time we haven’t identified any rat colonies or infestation.” But Pascucilla told News 8 that doesn’t mean there aren’t rats in the area.

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The Health Department has received complaints of rat problems in the past few years in East Haven neighborhoods. They started an awareness campaign to alert residents what not to do.

Pascucilla added, “Eliminate the food and water supplies so you don’t want to feed animals outside. If you have a dog clean up after the dog because that could be a source of food for rodents.”

WEB EXTRA: Letter to East Haven residents from East Shore District Health Department

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