To the appropriate town authority this needs attention


I’ve seen some very bold rats in the Village the past few weeks. One crossing Vose and South Orange Ave and the other just hanging out like it’s normal in the parking lot between Stoney’s and the bank atm. 

That could mean a big infestation.  


Did you call the Health Department?


Send an email to She'll respond.


One night last week I saw a big ol’ rat behind grid iron waffle joint, near atm.

I think it was the first rat I ever saw in downtown, in almost 9 years of living here.


Not to make light of it  but what's the deal with rats and atm's?

Hoops - I'll send an email to Sheena. I don't think she looks at MOL much  - she uses Facebook and Nextdoor. 

Thanks for posting about it. 


The company I was with at the time used to supply South Orange Village with the proper rodent poison to do in rats................we did it at cost as a curtesy

.  Since I serviced Seton Hall at the time as well as lived in Maplewood ,  I was the proper person

To make the deliveries................brought them to the Health Dept in the now,  no longer used building

Any suburban area that has a stream running through it or nearby  is susceptible to those guys

They are not stupid......when in numbers they will have an Alpha Male down to the Zeta Male

The Alpha, which is the bully of the lot.......sends the Zeta to test out new food sources

If he does not get sick within a few days the group considers the food source safe to eat

Matching wits with rats was not what I had in my career plans...........but man proposes

God disposes


thanks Cramer.  I didn’t know she doesn’t do mol anymore.  


I received a response from Sheena. She got in touch with John Festa, the Health Officer, who said he has been working with property owners downtown who brought in pest control and will follow up today. 

Thanks again, Hoops. 


I also suggest the Gov Alert App. There was a water main break across the street from us last week and I noted it there and Dpw sent people out right away. 


Rat boroughs are easy to spot.  The immediate area should be baited with the proper rodenticide.

It will be slow acting and will be parafinized........for weather proofing ,  slow acting and not attractive

to children or animals

Dumpsters should be covered as tightly as possible   They can gnaw through a rubber garbage can but

don't have the dexterity of a racoon.

Home pest control is largely unneeded.  These guys can and do live well and eat well courtesy of the

South Orange restaurants

Cats are largely useless as these guys can and will bite when cornered

Large snap traps can have some effect but will break a knuckle if they go off as you are setting them

Make their environment less hospitable..............sanitation and proper baiting will go a long way


Our Health Officer and Pest Control were out this morning at 5:30am following up on the concerns posted here.  Burrows were identified and dusted and efforts will continue into next week. Our Health Officer has also identified some solutions that will assist businesses/restaurants in the vincinity and will be working with them to mitigate some of the exposure.  

Thanks cramer for shooting me an email.

If anyone has any specific issues they need addressed, you can go to our website and call the appropriate department, use our online/mobile app service portal SOConnect, and of course feel free to shoot me an email at



Bumping - the Health Officer and Pest Control continue to address this situation with dusting.  I'm receiving reports weekly.  Also, the issue with the wooden dumpster is also being addressed with property owners.


A couple of years ago, I saw rats swimming in the brook one warm summer day. For a second, they were kind of cute... then I remembered they were rats. But, I do agree with author that any place with a stream will have rats. South Orange has always had rats (the rodent kind) because of the brook.

Thanks Sheena for dealing with this though. Ughity ugh ugh!


I've been enlightened.  Since becoming VP - I've become quasi-knowledgable about cat mating habits and yowling, chickens, and now rats and how truly brilliant they are...    Who knew?  


I have seen MANY by Chris's diner on the corner of SO Ave and Vose. I looks like the trash that was in the alleyway has been cleaned but those jokers are still there bobbing and weaving.  One got hit a few weeks ago on Vose...the body imprint still can be seen in the road..acckkkkkkk...they are so scary and so disgusting. Even if they can't all be driven away they shouldn't be swarming and just hanging out. Makes me avoid all restaurants in the downtown area.


author said:

Cats are largely useless as these guys can and will bite when cornered

You haven't met my sister's cat.  She LOVES to catch rats, and then proudly shows off her kill for all to see.  She doesn't actually eat them, I guess it is just for sport.


spontaneous said:

author said:

Cats are largely useless as these guys can and will bite when cornered

You haven't met my sister's cat.  She LOVES to catch rats, and then proudly shows off her kill for all to see.  She doesn't actually eat them, I guess it is just for sport.

Your sister has the rare breed Spartacus cat...............I could  have used a few of them in my day

Most cats are content to bat around and kill a basically defenseless  bird or mouse.

As  a matter of fact many pest control people would rather avoid any rat confrontations


My father tells a story about when he was a cop in the Bronx and chasing a dealer with another cop, and headed toward a small vacant lot cutting through to an escape (but, unknown to him, fenced).  They got to the lot and my dad stopped, and held the other guy back.  Told him they’d wait but they weren’t going in.  Before any objection, some thrashing and yelling, guy comes screaming out ten seconds later, rats still hanging off him. Lot was filled with burrows and the vacant buildings on each side absolutely infested.  Said he’d never seen anyone so happy to be arrested.  


In most cases any and all rat stories are true.   The one that stands out is of rats biting the faces of sleeping babies.  What actually happens is that the baby takes some milk and goes to sleep.  The rat starts     licking the milk drops from the face of the baby. The baby flinches and the rat immediately attacks and bites.

Fortunately in the suburbs this happens rarely.  But a constant program of monitoring and treating where  needed is very much in order............waiting till they are spotted is never a good idea

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