2020 has been anything but a positive, loving year. The threats that continue to come seem to get more horrific. We went into the year thinking that the worst thing could be Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren coming into power. Both of them stepped down only for the world to be confronted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
With millions of deaths around the globe as a result of the coronavirus, we learn about murder hornets coming out of Washington. The hornets seem to be dead set (pardon the pun) on destroying beehives. With bees already threatened by the environment, the murder hornets are hardly the destructive entities we wanted to hear about.
Now, there’s an even more horrific problem: cannibalistic rats.
There are rats eating each other in the streets. They’re eating their young.
According to rodentologists at the CDC, there are hordes of cannibal rats that are getting more and more aggressive. These American rats are a result of humans being in lockdown for over eight weeks. The rats, previously accustomed to dining out on street garbage and restaurant waste, are no longer given those luxuries.
The dumpsters they used to dive are empty. They’re hungry. They’re mad. And they’re willing to do whatever is necessary to quench their appetites. As such, they’re resorting to cannibalism for survival.
They’re willing to eat their young – and some of these rats are doing it in the open streets. With so many community-wide closures happening, they’re not able to access the food that they used to be able to access. If you really look at it, we have done this to them. Our desire to survive and stay in has led to the rats going hungry. We’re not eating out at restaurants and, therefore, not generating the trash that they used to ransack.
Environmentalists are having a field day as they learn about cannibal rats. There are countless conspiracy theories of what would happen in a world without people. Rats eating one another is an unanticipated side effect when people aren’t out in the streets, doing what it is that we used to do pre-pandemic.
Of course, there is a positive side to being locked away for months. Smog has cleared. Oceans and rivers are clearer. There’s less pollution everywhere. The pollution that involves trash on the streets, however, is what’s causing the rats to turn on each other, quite literally.
What happens if the rats want a taste of something different? Is it possible that they would attack a human being if hungry enough? It’s unlikely. Rat attacks aren’t very common. One girl was hospitalized in France years ago after being attacked by a swarm of rats. However, she was also a paraplegic and, therefore, unable to shoo them away.
If we actually have rats that are going to attack humans on the street for a snack, there are bigger problems. Especially in cities like New York and Chicago where there may actually be more rats than humans, to begin with, it could turn into a rat apocalypse of sorts. At that point, people will be praying for the pandemic to come back rather than dealing with the possibility of a rat pack attack.
However, if the rats are going to start thinning their population, it could be seen as a positive effect in the pandemic. As the CDC and medical researchers look to find a cure or at least a vaccine, the people staying inside is creating a positive in regard to the pollution.
Skies are clearer, water is bluer, and the streets are cleaner. If it means having to see a few rats going at it in an alley, so be it. This may be the small price we pay to reduce the rodent population. So long as they continue to be satisfied with rat flesh, we can be sure that we’re safe from the hungry hordes roaming the streets.