Ottawa Among Top 10 “Rattiest” Cities in Canada, New Study Reveals

Study Ranks Ottawa Amongst Canada's "Rattiest" Cities, with Toronto Claiming Top Spot

A recent study has ranked Ottawa as one of the top ten cities in Canada with the highest rodent populations. Conducted by pest control service Orkin Canada, the research places Ottawa as the eighth “rattiest” city in the nation and third in Ontario.

The City of Toronto clinched the first position for the second consecutive year, with Vancouver giving stiff competition for the top spot. Other cities like Scarborough and Moncton also found their way back to the top 10 list this year.

The basis for the study was the number of rodent treatments Orkin Canada performed both in commercial and residential areas from August 1, 2022, to July 31, 2023.

Alice Sinia, a pest specialist and entomologist with Orkin Canada, remarked on the findings. “Rat and mice calls used to be expected primarily in the fall and winter as they escape the cold outdoors, but now they are becoming a year-round effort,” Sinia said. She highlighted the longer summer seasons and abundant food sources as factors that provide ideal conditions for a boom in rodent populations. “This is why it is more important than ever to use integrated pest management techniques to tackle all of the conditions that allow mice and rats to proliferate.”

Here is the list of the top 10 “rattiest” cities in Canada for 2023:

  1. Toronto
  2. Vancouver
  3. Burnaby
  4. Kelowna
  5. Mississauga
  6. Richmond
  7. Victoria
  8. Ottawa
  9. Scarborough
  10. Moncton

As the rodent population continues to grow, more regions across Canada are implementing rodenticide bans. In 2023, the City of Pickering set a precedent as the first city in Ontario to take action against rodenticides. However, Ottawa currently lacks such by-laws.

To mitigate the rodent issue in homes, Orkin recommends several measures:

  • Sealing exterior wall cracks or holes, joints, and ensuring proper weather stripping around windows and doors.
  • Installing screens on utility openings and ducts.
  • Maintaining yards by trimming shrubs, grass, removing weeds, and clearing unnecessary clutter.
  • Addressing moisture issues like unclogging gutters.
  • Storing objects away from walls and elevated by about 45 centimetres.
  • Rodent-proofing sheds, which become significant breeding grounds for rodents during winter.
  • Ensuring proper waste disposal to avoid attracting rodents. Using tight-fitting lids and monitoring garbage overflow is essential.

With the increasing rodent population, these measures are crucial to ensuring a rodent-free environment in Canadian homes.