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For the ninth consecutive year, Chicago’s rodent population earned the city number one ranking in Orkin’s Top 50 Rattiest Cities List.

Orkin based the list on the number of new rodent treatments performed by its pest control teams between Sept. 1, 2022, to Aug. 31, 2023. This ranking includes both residential and commercial pest control treatments.

Chicago topped the list, followed by Los Angeles, New York, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Denver, Detroit and the Cleveland-Akron markets.

Orkin noted that mice and other rodents invade an estimated 21 million U.S. homes each fall, usually seeking food, water and shelter from the cold.

“Rodents multiply swiftly and when an infestation is left unattended, they can cause extensive damage to homes and yards,” said Ben Hottel, an Orkin entomologist. “Rats are capable of squeezing into spaces through holes as small as a quarter, which makes it especially important to seal cracks from the outside.”

Orkin recommended that property owners look for signs of rodent droppings, gnaw marks, rub marks along walls and floorboards, nest in dark and secluded areas and strange noises in walls and attics.