This is not a story you expect to read every day:
A ghost ship carrying nothing but disease-ridden rats could be about to make land on Britain’s shore, experts have warned.
The Lyubov Orlova cruise liner has been drifting across the north Atlantic for the better part of a year, and salvage hunters say there is a strong chance it is heading this way.
Built in Yugoslavia in 1976, the unlucky vessel was abandoned in a Canadian harbour after its owners were embroiled in a debt scandal and failed to pay the crew.
The authorities in Newfoundland tried to sell the hull for scrap – valued at £600,000 – to the Dominican Republic, but cut their losses when it came loose in a storm on the way.
Sending the ship off into international waters, Transport Canada said it was satisfied the Lyubov Orlova “no longer poses a threat to the safety of [Canadian] offshore oil installations, their personnel or the marine environment”.
I’m mostly posting this because of the sheer weirdness of the story and the creep factor. It is also kind of fun to think of scenarios involving ghost ships filled with cannibal rats beaching itself on an inhabited island. I wonder if rats that turn to cannibalism continue the practice after they’ve found an alternate food source. If so they could be an effective method of reducing rat populations in human settlements.