Snaking Out the Rats
covering burma and southeast asia
Sunday, June 16, 2019
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Snaking Out the Rats


By THE IRRAWADDY AUGUST, 2010 - VOL.18 NO.8


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With rodents in the city increasing, people in Rangoon are buying harmless, colorful snakes to rid homes and businesses of rats.

“People say that if there is a snake in the house, rats will not come inside,” said Myint Tun, who lives in Latha Township in Rangoon. He said a snake is more effective than a rat trap or poison and that most residents keep their snake in a cage.

A pet shop owner near Lanmataw Township, said: “The price for one snake is 1,500 kyat (US $1.50) to 3,000 kyat. The only food they need is milk. We sell at least three to four snakes a day.”

A Vendor in Rangoon offers snakes for sale. (Photo: CHRISTIAN BOBST)
In June, thousands of rats were seen along the Naypyidaw-Rangoon highway migrating south from Naypyidaw, and there were unconfirmed reports that an unspecified number of Rangoon residents had been infected with plague, which can be transmitted by rodents.

A published government announcement said that while some areas were affected by an infestation of rats in late June, the situation is now under control following the creation of a rat eradication task force and measures to educate the public.

An unnamed official at the Minisitry of Health said patients affected by plague had been effectively treated.

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