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Local newspaper Sydsvenskan spotted dozens of the dead animals floating in the waters of both Kungsparken and the adjoining Castle Garden (Slottsträdgården) last weekend.
The most likely cause is believed to be overflow from urban drains following heavy rain.
“In all likelihood it came from surface water pipes,” Peter Nilsson, an official at Malmö’s Streets and Highways Agency told Sydsvsenskan.
“With heavy rain the water flushes out rats that were lying dead in the pipes. Even live rats could have been swept away and drowned,” he added.
Rats have been flushed into the city’s waterways before, but according to Nilsson this is the first time that the phenomenon has occurred in a number of years. The municipality said it planned on recovering the dead animals as quickly as possible.
Malmö was drenched in heavy rain last weekend, with storms marking the end of Midsummer celebrations in the southern Swedish city.
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