Facts about rats

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Species

 

The brown rat

The brown rat is the most common. It is the rat living in the sewerage. The Latin name is Rattus Norvegius. The rat can be up to 55 cm long and can weigh more than ½ kg.

 

The black rat

The rarer black rats do not live in the sewerage but are mostly seen around e.g. harbours. The Latin name is called Rattus Rattus.

 

The fur

Rats are not necessarily brown, grey or black. They can have spots or be white or light furred even if they live in the sewerage.

 

Good to know about rats
 

The senses of the rat

Rats see poorly but have a well-developed sense of smell and hearing. Rats are neophobic which means they are curious and scared at the same time.

It means that rats on the surface can be quite difficult to catch! They move along walls, in shelters and bushes or in the sewerage where they feel safe.

They leave brownish smelling secretion and feel safest going where there already is a scented trail.

For the same reason they are prone to eat food which has already been eaten by their mother and new food is eaten in a small amount as e precaution against the rat getting sick.

 

The nest and food of the rat

In Urban areas the majority of the rats are in the sewerages. Here they have food, water and protection.

Rats are omnivorous, but prefer cereals. A few examples have been seen of rats surviving on food consisting of sackings and candles.

Rats must have 40 ml of clean water every day to survive which is why water is a good incentive for WiseBox. The rats like fresh water better than sewerage water. Mice on the other hand can do without water for a longer period as they get more water through their food.

 

The body and anatomy of the rat

Rat teeth grow more than 1cm per month and can gnaw through anything softer than glass and iron. This means that the rat has to gnaw – if it does not, the teeth will grow until it dies from not being able to forage.

A rat is extremely flexible. It can climb, swim and dive and even large rats can pass through a hole of about 2 cm. They have no trouble crawling several storeys through the waste pipe as they can crawl on vertical surfaces.

See how rats get in through the toilet: Rat in toilet – video from National Geographic

 

The reproduction of the rat

One single pair of rats may under favourable conditions increase the population of rats with 800 rats in a year. The rat is pregnant for 20-24 days and gives birth to between 6 and 12 young rats.

The female rats are sexually mature 5 weeks after their birth. (8 weeks for the male). Rats live up to 4 years in captivity, but a wild rat rarely lives more than one year.

 

This is why the rat is dangerous

Rats are healthy carriers of more than 50 serious diseases e.g. salmonella, hepatitis, the deathly Weil’s disease, E. coli bacteria and influenza. By eliminating the rats, the transferal of infections to humans and domestic animals will be avoided.

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