There are some new, unexpected residents in the Clark County wetlands, and staff members are looking for answers because for the second time in a week, staff members found the domestic animals left on the property.
On Wednesday, Staff at the Wetlands Park found the pet rats near the gate entrance. The first time the rats were found was last week on Halloween.
“This is the largest dump of anything like this that we’ve seen,” said Crystalaura Jackson, recreation specialist Wetlands Park.
Wetlands Park Staff captured video of the pet rats on the property.
“When she investigated it, she actually saw a bunch of domestic rats scattering, and she was able to capture a few that were in a container,” Jackson said.
A rat rescue helped round them up over a few days, but the volunteers returned after staff made a second discovery within a week.
“It’s actually illegal in Clark County to drop off animals in a public park,” Jackson said.
The rescue collected about 35 rats.
“It’s kind of cruel in a way, at the same point why get a pet if you’re not going to take care of it,” said Earl McFarlane, Wetlands Park visitor.
“Maybe at least they thought of putting them out in a natural place instead of in the street I guess,” said Micol Sanko, a Wetlands Park visitor.
There is a worry among staff if all of the rats aren’t recovered soon.
“It can actually introduce health issues to the ecoystem of the park,” Jackson said. “It can both damage other animals in the park and domestic animals just aren’t going to survive on their own.”
Clark County recommends a better alternative to abandonment is contacting the Animal Foundation which accepts all animals.