Pest control probe over rat concerns at Ottery park, as public told: ‘Don’t over-worry’

Concerns over rats will see pest control officers return to an Ottery park this week – but residents have been told not to ‘over-worry’.

East Devon District Council (EDDC) workers laid bait boxes at the Land of Canaan last week in a bid to assess if the area has a vermin problem.

East Devon reported on Thursday how a little girl broke her arm when she fell fleeing from a pack of rats at the Land of Canaan.

The youngster’s mum described how the long-tailed furry creatures gate-crashed their afternoon enjoying the sunshine.

EDDC says nearby cows, water and hedgerows ‘could easily attract rats given to the nature of the area’.

Responding to one resident’s enquiry over the issue, EDDC’s technical officer said pest control will return on Wednesday (July 23) to check if any bait has been taken.

“He will then assess and return the following week to keep monitoring and treat as necessary…until he is satisfied activity has ceased,” said the officer.

“This is standard practice for treatment whether it is applied on commercial or domestic premises, so as a result I would advise that members of the public do not need to over-worry.”

The mum whose daughter fell and broke the radius bone in her right arm said last week: “I’ve never seen anything like it in such a local area.

“Obviously, you get the odd one you’ll see in places, but this was something else.”

“It needs dealing with properly.”

An EDDC spokeswoman said on Thursday: “We have received a call about a single rat sighting in the Land of Canaan area and our new pest control technician has been on site today looking for evidence of activity.

“If this is found we will commence a treatment and continue until we are satisfied that there are no further issues.

“The treatments we use are in secure bait stations in case of contact with non-target species.”

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Rat run! Little girl breaks arm fleeing from rodents at Ottery park

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