A report released Tuesday by Reform California, the political action committee of former San Diego Councilman Carl DeMaio, says a survey of 23 rodent control companies across the state shows sharp increases in rat populations everywhere.
According to the report, more than 78 percent of the companies reported an increase of at least 50 percent, and 43.6 percent reported an increase ranging from 76 percent to more than 100 percent. No companies reported decreases.
In the Reform California report, the panel of experts said the spikes they have seen in rat populations are likely related to increased homelessness, because storing food and going to the bathroom outdoors helps rats flourish.
The report was released on Tuesday, just prior to a DeMaio-led press conference in which Reform California called for California Governor Gavin Newsom to declare a public health emergency.
A study conducted by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, the National Park Service and scientists found that rodenticides are having a major impact on wildlife, even pets. The mountain lion population is especially at risk.
Sources: Reform California and ABC 7