Chicago's rats are getting contraception.
To cut down on the city's problem with rats popping up all over locations in its transportation system, the Chicago Transit Authority plans to roll out a new method. The CTA will feed rats bait filled with birth control which eventually sterilizes them. RedEyeChicago reports:
In addition to poisonous traps the CTA uses to kill rats, the agency plans to test new technology that would make female and male rats infertile. A pilot program is expected to start in the spring, though the CTA is still working out details including negotiating the price with the bait maker and deciding where the traps will be placed, CTA spokeswoman Tammy Chase said.
The new bait the CTA plans to test in the spring is called ContraPest, made by Arizona company SenesTech, which tested the traps in the New York subway last year. The bait, which comes in semi-solid or liquid form, is placed in a small box for rats to eat so they have a more difficult time reproducing. Female rats lose eggs while male rats have testicle problems, according to the SenesTech Web site.
The company tested the birth control rat traps in New York last year. How it works is the rats eat the bait a few times and produce less offspring, eventually resulting in full sterility within 8-12 weeks. The bait doesn't kill the rats and it's not a poison.
You can read all about Chicago's gross rat problem and all different kinds of gross rats the city has lurking in its public transportation system here. This definitely counts as a holiday story this year, BTW.
Just to make your head spin for the fun of it: Rats will get free birth control. Most of you will probably not. (Not that we'd want birth control that eventually makes us sterile, but STILL. FUCKING STILL.)
Image via Erni/Shutterstock