Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Rat - a - tat - tat Thousands of Rats Claim !

Attended the River community council meeting tonight, for I had a strong suspicion that I would be in the firing line for feeding the wildlife at the Merryton Bridge. Sure enough, true to form and right on cue, community chair Tommy Hogg said there were "Thousands of rats" at the Merryton bridge due to people throwing food from the bridge! I think he's been reading too many pied piper novels. Over the past fortnight I have only seen the same family of 2 adults and 2 young ones, They have been photographed several times by different people over the past two weeks, and these have been passed no doubt to RCC perhaps giving him the impression that there are thousands of rats at the bridge. Today I happened to see one of the adults coming out of an old drain adjoining the Merryton bridge, unfortunately by the time I got the camera out it had gone, however enclosed pics of the drain cover which has a gap at the bottom big enough for the rats to gain entrance. I get the impression this is a very old defunct drain, perhaps from the days of the old slaughterhouse site ? Also included is a pic of the drain that has just been extended into the river - (before it was extended.) You can see clearly the scope for rats to use it, and with a very unsavoury menu at their disposal ! This is the same drain that I reported to SEPA back in 2007 or thereabouts, and they confirmed that it was indeed spewing raw sewage over the area. Now it will happily spew it into the river when conditions are right ! Over many years I have seen rats from the west pier all the way up the river to Cantrybridge, they are common brown rats and part of the river scene, but I have never seen thousands.

On the question of Brodie of Brodie, I was impressed by the Man 's arguments over the Kingsteps issue, and I share his anti wildfowl shooting stance. It may be sport to some, but it is the killing and wounding of innocent birds never the less.

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