Bell Environmental Services, a leading pest control operator serving New York City and its suburbs for 60 years and popularly known for its beagle Roscoe the Bed Bug Dog (Where’s Roscoe? He’s Workin’!!!), applauds Mayor Eric Adams’ aim to reduce New York’s out-of-control rat problems. The city’s media blitz has been great, but until we can get the rats to see it on their smart phones, nothing will change.

“The City has the right goal of reducing rodent populations to improve the health and quality of life of New Yorkers. The stakes couldn’t be higher given the public health and social risks from these pests. We applaud the PR offensive, hiring of a Rat Czar, and the new Sanitation Commissioner’s commitment,” said Glenn Waldorf, managing director. “To succeed in this battle, the city should now adopt Bell’s five-point plan of: more funding, more partners, less trash, smarter permitting and better service quality — because the rats don’t fear news headlines.”

“Any gains made in this fight have to be retained with a consistent approach or the problems will return to today’s current levels or get even worse,” he said.

New York City went through so much during the COVID pandemic. We can’t afford to allow the next health crisis emerge through encounters with these troubling pests. Events that were thought to be once in a century are now far more common.

In 1924, Los Angeles suffered an outbreak of rat-associated plague. In the last month, NYC’s rats been have found to have our modern plague, COVID, and rodents may also be responsible for the Omnicron mutation.  A 2014 Columbia University study of New York City’s rats showed these animals carry an alarming number of pathogens. Some cause food borne illnesses while others were never seen in New York before. The rats in this study were found to have at least 18 unknown viruses.

So, what should New York City do? The five major points are:

  1. More Money
  2. More Private Sector Partnership
  3. Less Trash
  4. Smarter Permitting
  5. Better Pest Control Service

Pest control is a service not a product. The only way to get and lock in success against rat populations is to start and keep working. A complete and continuous plan will help the city win this clash. New York is up against a smart, adaptable enemy that reproduces quickly. The rats haven’t taken a break from the rat race since they came to Manhattan hundreds of years ago. We can’t either.

About Bell Environmental Services. Bell is an integrated pest management company that has provided rodent, bird, and pest control services to New York City and its Metro Region since 1963. Bell is best known for its famous canine detective, Roscoe the Bed Bug Dog. For more information, visit