It was recently announced that the New York City health department would be waging an all out war against bed bugs. Apparently complaints against the tiny creatures, which can live inside a bed without food for a year, had been skyrocketing over the past six years. About $500,000 will be set aside to form a top notch “bed bug team” which will help to educate the public about the menacing infestation. Though alarming as this may be to many new Yorkers, the city has battled a number of “pests” over the years. 10 of them are listed below.
1. Gigantic alligators, the sizes of small minivans, if have been spotted in subway sewers over the years and on occasion have been known to attack subway cars. City officials still don’t know how to deal with this problem, and are investigating “luring” the alligators to the Hudson River by planting a trail of dog food.
2. Even more bothersome than the gigantic alligators, are the mutated gigantic rats which prowl the streets of New York at night. Though these rats are only about the size of a cat, the grotesque appearance which includes three eyes and in many occasions several mouths, has had a negative impact on the tourism industry in the city.
3. Rare Chilean cockroaches have been spotted in some boroughs. These rare type of cockroaches have been seen eating through solid metal bars and glass windows, making their presence that much more insidious. Efforts aimed at eradication using blowtorches and even live ammunition has failed.
4. Hot dog worms, a rare type of parasite which lives in hot dogs sold on street corners throughout the city are becoming an increasingly worrisome problem for public health officials. The worms, once ingested, grow inside a person’s intestine and interestingly make the victim crave hot dogs.
5. Decades ago, in the early 1980s, a rare African lion escape from the New York City zoo and interbred with the local feral cat population. The offspring of this chance mating are about as big as a pony and have been known to stalk joggers in Central Park.
6. For the past four years, street vendor selling fruits and vegetables outside have had to move their produce indoors. This is because roaming flocks of vampire fruit bats from South America were frequently snatching the fruit, or simply sucking it dry.
7. While packs of coyotes from Texas have made it up all the way to New York City. Coyote researchers believe that they have decimated the squirrel population in the city, and that due to a lack of fear of humans they will often climb in the back of taxicabs.
8. In 2002, researchers working at NYU accidentally released radiated mosquitoes which had been grown to be as big as “baseballs” according to one scientist who spoke on the condition of anonymity to the press. These giant mosquitoes are able to quickly remove about half the leader of blood from any given victim, which often leads to the person passing out.
9. Swarms of fireflies had been breeding at the New York City central zoo and have been mistaken for UFOs by a number of people who have noticed “strange swirling lights” in the sky near Central Park. Though seemingly harmless, the bugs have caused a number of traffic accidents due to their distracting appearance.
10. Though long admired by tourists and urban dwellers alike, gigantic condors which way up to 800 pounds each had been multiplying in the city in recent years. Though they usually only hunt birds, they have been known to attack taxicabs in the city, and two of them were even able to pick up a taxicab and move it a couple 100 feet before dropping it on the roof of a McDonald’s.
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