As rats spread various diseases and destroy food and property, rodent control work is important. Currently, the rodent control team of the Division of Environmental Hygiene of IAM is responsible for the rodent control work in the Macao peninsula and the islands of Taipa and Coloane. In accordance with the population structure and sanitary conditions of the various districts, the team has divided the Macao peninsula into 20 districts, Taipa into 3 districts and Coloane into 2 districts. On the public streets of the relevant districts, the team will systematically place the bait for rodent control twice or more each year according to a plan known as “District Rodent Control” .
Rodent control work is conducted over a five-week cycle in each district. During that period, poisonous bait is extensively planted on the streets of every district for rodent control. The rodent control team observes the rat excrement, grease stains, bite marks and rat holes in order to know well the living habits of the rats, and subsequently performs technical analysis based on this information to determine suitable locations to plant the bait and post warnings in the places near the bait spots to alert residents. The team will conduct inspections to the bait spots, while planting additional bait as needed. When rats are found to be killed by the bait, IAM will properly dispose of their remains. When carrying out rodent control work, IAM will note the number of rats killed and pinpoint locations of serious rodent infestations in order to improve the work on rodent control while analysing and studying its effectiveness.
In addition, the rodent control team regularly carries out rodent control for the facilities under IAM’s supervision such as markets. It also places bait boxes to set fixed bait spots at the hawker areas, garbage chambers on public streets and rainwater outfalls, so that IAM can perform targeted and long-term control of rodents in these places, which are more likely to become the sources of rodent infestations or be threatened by heavy rodent infestations.
Currently, there are about 800 fixed bait spots in Macao. These areas, which are planted with bait boxes, have been assigned designated staff to record the rate of rat deaths and replenish the bait. Apart from the above-mentioned regular rodent control work, the rodent control team also carries out rodent control in public areas reported by residents as affected. The team can also give professional advice on rodent control techniques for combating the rodent infestations in private property, further minimizing the potential nuisance of rodent infestation to the public.