Khatib resident points to scattered leftover food & uncovered trash bins as cause of rat issue
'If pest control is so effective, why are we still facing a rat problem today?'
A Khatib resident, Jennifer Lee, took to Facebook on Feb. 16 to share her thoughts and observations about the pest problems in her neighbourhood.
She disagreed with Nee Soon GRC MP Lee Bee Wah on attributing the root cause of pest and hygiene issues to unsupervised cat feeding.
Instead of singling out one particular source of food waste, Jennifer Lee wrote that there are other areas that contribute to the problem.
She wrote in her post:
This post highlights food waste of all types. It is not about singling one source of food waste, but about recognising hard facts that Dr Lee doesn’t dare / want to talk about – IE, we leave more human food around than cat food. This, undeniably, is one source of rat food.
Other sources of food waste
Jennifer Lee wrote that she took a stroll around the neighbourhood and observed that there were other types of unattended food that should not be ignored or taken lightly.
Throughout my stroll, I found no trace of cat food hanging around. Instead, all I found were human food left everywhere in the estate. These leftover food will remain where they are, till the workers clean up the next morning.
Some examples of food left behind by people include religious offerings, an uncleared table at the coffee shop and uncovered bins.
Here are some photos that she took to prove her point.
Jennifer Lee shared that some offerings are left overnight and will only be cleared the next day by the cleaners.
However, she questioned if there are better ways to manage the offerings.
An example she gave was how areas can be allocated for such practices, as burning areas are now set up for residents to burn joss paper.
Jennifer Lee emphasised that she is not trying to undermine the religious practice, but that such practices can be improved so that pest control can be more effective.
If no one has the guts to talk about these issues, there will never be improvements. It’s not to kill the practice but to improve the practice.
Leftover food and drinks after gatherings
Jennifer Lee also spotted food and drinks, as well as uncleared utensils left behind on a coffee shop table.
A plastic bag full of waste, as well as mandarin orange peels, were left on the ground too, which becomes an accessible source of food for rats and cockroaches.
Leftover food was also scattered at one of the void decks after a large gathering.
In her post, Jennifer Lee also quoted Lee Bee Wah’s description of “dancing rats”, as the resident witnessed four rats in a trash bin.
Takes more to solve pest problem
Jennifer Lee shared that irresponsible human acts might actually be a bigger problem, which should be tackled in order to solve the pest and hygiene issues faced in the area.
In addition to that, she also highlighted the importance to have compassion in our daily lives and decision-making.
Here’s the full text from the post
‘I am a Khatib resident. Earlier this week, MP Lee Bee Wah decided to point full blame on cat feeders for the rat problem, turning a complete blind eye to the root of the problem – human food.
I just got home after an hour’s recee close to midnight around my neighbourhood. Throughout my stroll, I found no trace of cat food hanging around. Instead, all I found were human food left everywhere in the estate. These leftover food will remain where they are, till the workers clean up the next morning.
Oh – I also found the “dancing rats” she was talking about, and have photos to prove. Four, having a buffet of leftover fruits.
Surely, one who sees and complains about the tibits (cat food) can’t be completely blind to the actual buffet (human food)?
As long as we pretend to be blind to the bigger problem, killing rodents and calling pest control for pythons (natural predators of rats) will only remain a short term solution to a long term problem. It’s pointless whining about having to wipe the spills without bothering to stop the leak.
I question our choice of actions in managing the animal issues. These are sentient, feeling beings with nervous systems that allow them to feel pain just like us. Is it right for rats or any animals persay to be killed non-stop, year on year, en masse in the hundreds and thousands, just because we can and have the funds to – while we turn a blind eye to the actual problem? If pest control is so effective, why are we still facing a rat problem today? Perhaps, we should also place considerations in exercising compassion in our daily lives. Our MP should be helping us nip the problem in the bud.
Enjoy the photos.’
Here’s the actual post:
Top photo collage from Jennifer Lee’s Facebook post