An artist from the Pacific Northwest whose grandfather supposedly released nutria rats into the wild there has made a short animated film defending the hated pests from the ire of the locals. If you’re from Louisiana, where these SOBs live and tear up levees, you won’t be able to watch this thing without cruelly laughing. The filmmaker contends that Washingtonians ought to live and let live with the nutria, because hey, the people who live in the region aren’t native to it either, and are destructive in their own ways. What kind of person anthropomorphizes a destructive pest, and then deploys multiculturalism to defend the varmints?
It is hard to overstate the idiotic sentimentality of this guy’s position. Nutria are voracious and reproduce quickly. They destroy levees and wetlands, the latter by eating even the roots of aquatic plants, eliminating crucial habitat for other species. According to The Nature Conservancy, “There really isn’t anything good to be said about nutria in the United States. They eat themselves and a lot of other critters out of house and home.”
Plus, they allegedly attack people at Wal-Mart. The state of Louisiana is trying to get people in Louisiana to develop a taste for them, but I wouldn’t touch the meat of this nasty thing with a gold-plated gumbo spoon. Apparently, though, you can get certain Manhattan editors to swallow anything.