Study | Not all the rats in new York are the same

Study | Not all the rats in new York are the same

Oh, rats, eternal companions of the human cities…

Tailed rodents are always a lot in the cities, which is not surprising considering how much garbage and waste produced by our two-legged brethren. The tailed people of new York were able to adapt to the constant neighborhood, and hordes constantly grow and multiply. Of course, the citizens of this state of Affairs does not suit, and they are trying to deal with rats in all possible ways.

And only slightly comes to mind is to use this rich factual material for the purposes of science. Matthew Combs, a graduate student at Fordham University decided to explore the city of rats to find out what they have in common and how they differ. Combs and his colleagues caught rats in Manhattan to get their DNA and create the most comprehensive genetic portrait of gray rats, which represent a dominant population of rodents in new York.

Study | Not all the rats in new York are the same

During the experiments, and scientific research revealed that genetically Manhattan rats are most similar to rats from Western Europe, especially from UK and France. The researchers say that, most likely, this is due to historical facts: in the middle of the eighteenth century rats came to the New world on ships, along with the immigrants. In addition, Combs found that the majority of rats of Manhattan boasts common ancestors, despite the fact that new York has been the center of international trade, this means that the city could get, and rats from other countries.

However, digging deeper, the researchers found that Manhattan rats can be divided into two subpopulations: rodents from the outskirts of the district and rodents from the city centre. Moreover, this division is not final, and rats from each of the areas are genetically different from their counterparts. Scientists say they can fairly accurately identify a rodent of some parts of Manhattan got their hands, since rats, like humans, live in their own areas, which are almost identical with the human.

They are parasites and, of course, pests, and we need to get rid of them. But rats are amazing in their own way.

Combs and his team all summer catching rats on the streets of Manhattan, using the special maps and tips to local residents, to determine where it most often appear rodents. Scientists say that to lure them into the traps was not so easy, and in order to score the number of tailed the robbers for his experiments, had to show incredible care and ingenuity in the selection of bait.

Currently, Combs is writing a dissertation on a topic related to the influence of rats on the environment of new York. The purpose of their work, the researcher sees it, is to help the city solve the rat problem, because rodents into the houses on the streets not only irritate and disgust or fear. They can also represent threat to public health, transferring various diseases.