Although the Superstorm Sandy is long gone an d life is returning to normal in New York, there hordes of unwanted guests that are looking for new residences.
Not displaced person due to the storm, but hordes of rats that are fleeing the flood zone and taking up residence in buildings that were previously rat-free.
For some city officials, the last straw came a week ago when a rodent problem forced a two-day closure of Magnolia Bakery, a Manhattan landmark often credited with starting a national cupcake craze. Within days, a city councilwoman floated a proposal to create a $500,000 emergency rat mitigation program for storm-impacted neighborhoods.
While the city's health department, which collects reams of data about the rat population and maps infestations looking for trends, said rodent complaints actually had declined since the late October storm, which was spawned when Hurricane Sandy merged with two other weather systems, the reality on ground is much different.
TV stations and newspapers have been rife with reports about rats infesting parked cars and fleeing the East River waterfront for the brownstones of Brooklyn Heights and exterminators enjoying a boom in business.