x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Race against the rats

Summer is the time for everyone to mobolise in the fight against insects and rodents.

The numberless insects and too-numerous rodents with whom we share the world do not respect boundaries, and are not at all impressed by locked doors or laws.

So the onus falls on us humans, with some help from birds and cats: eternal vigilance is the price of health and comfort and serene freedom from itchy bug bites.

Entomologists explain earnestly, and correctly, that mankind needs insects, that they are essential actors in the global ecology, from pollinating crops to devouring other insects. Biologists say mice and rats, too, have their place in the scheme of things.

No doubt. But it is a philosophical human indeed who welcomes cockroaches and rats in a restaurant or a bedroom. That's why authorities are taking action, as The National reported yesterday, to remind us that we all must be careful, especially in the hot weather, to minimise the risks to life and comfort posed by pervasive pests.

This week's report about a well-known Abu Dhabi restaurant found crawling with rodents and roaches should set the tone: there but for rigorous clean-up and prevention go all of us. Indeed 69 other restaurants across the emirate were also closed recently for comparable problems.

Private homes are at risk too. This is total war: everyone must help if we are to limit the damage these relentless enemies can do.