How Many Rats Are There in New York, Exactly?

You have heard these urban legends: You are never more than six feet away from a rat in New York. There are as many as 96 million rats in the city. Even the least conservative reports suggest there are at least 250,000 of them. The truth is nobody knows how many rats there are, but everyone agrees that there is more than enough.

I, personally, don’t mind rats. I think they are kind of cool. They are the essence of what New York is: squirrels stripped down to their most efficient form. Who needs the cute furry tail, really?

Rats get a bad reputation. They are associated with poverty, dirt and disease. The video of rats scurrying around a Taco Bell/KFC in the Village don’t help. People are apparently afraid of rats biting them. Meanwhile, research shows that you are ten times more likely to get bit by a fellow human being. Makes you look at Suzy from Marketing in a whole new light, doesn’t it?