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I have lived in Chicago for 40 years and this is the first time I have had or seen them in my neighbourhood. The Streets and Sanitation Dept. had been baiting the alleyway when I noticed a hole in my garden. Later that evening I saw them scurrying and the peeking out of the hole. Needless to say I yelped in a most undignified manner. S&S came out and baited the hole. We covered it and laid wire cloth with heavy stones on top of that. 4 hours later my son tells me he sees a rat. Sure enough the rat used a tiny space I missed. I went to the basement, mixed cement and gave them a proper set of "cement shoes Chicago style".
With construction of new homes near the railway, I think they have been displaced. We are glad to say our dead count is at 6, though 1 under my beans, and another where I couldn't get to it (also cemented in to prevent more attempts to lodge under the garage) are enough for me.
If only people would realise that if there is a lot of bread left on the grass, it is silly to throw more, as this encourages rats and crows to come down and attack the baby ducks.