Thanks, Isaac: Mississippi Gets 16K Dead 'Swamp Rats'

Storm leaves behind dead nutria on the beaches
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 4, 2012 8:02 PM CDT
File photo of a very much alive nutria, or 'swamp rat.'   (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

(Newser) – Isaac may not have been the storm of the century, but beach cleanup workers in Mississippi have a nasty task all the same: About 16,000 dead and bloated nutria—a rat-like rodent with the nickname "swamp rat"—have washed up in the aftermath, reports the local Sun Herald. It's so bad that the Hancock County supervisor says he's pulled county workers off the job to let the feds handle it.

The same thing happened after Hurricane Gustav, "and we had people getting sick; wound up buying everybody's clothes," he says. "Our people just aren't trained for this." (Read more Tropical Storm Isaac stories.)

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