Rats Raid Holiday Packages in NYC Post Office

The rodents have been biting through boxes containing holiday sweets

Tuesday, Dec 20, 2011  |  Updated 8:53 AM EDT
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A post office in Midtown says it's ramping up extermination services in response to an influx of rats chewing through holiday packages containing sweets and other edible treats.

The New York Times first noted on its City Room blog Monday that three packages sent to various employees at the company arrived that morning with either bite marks or holes "looking like something out of a 'Tom and Jerry' cartoon."

The cardboard boxes contained a brownie, a sampler of chocolates, and a tin of fudge, said City Room. The brownie was completely gone.

When City Room visited the Midtown post office on West 38th Street, which serves the Times headquarters, one worker said the facility has been facing a problem with rats.

And a postal spokeswoman for the Northeast agreed with City Room that the post office can attract more rodents this time of year.

"The little animals can smell the chocolate and goodies," Maureen Marion told City Room. "At Midtown they've been very good at putting things in cabinets to keep them away from nibbles, but this time of year they just have more packages than they do have space to accommodate them."

In a separate statement to NBC New York, the Postal Service said the Manhattan post offices already use a bi-weekly extermination service, but now will use it weekly at the Midtown station.

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