Bush Rat

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Author: Peter Kuttner
License: Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0)

Description: [taxonomy:binomial=Rattus fuscipes]
Bush rats are widely distributed in Australia’s coastal areas from north Queensland to south western West Australia. I filmed this specimen because it was trapped in the spotlight’s beam between tree…


  1. I had one visit my holiday house on the NSW South Coast earlier this week. It decided to chew on a half-peeled banana – only. Left other fruit (orange and mandarin) and unpeeled bananas. I didn't see it at that stage, and there is no evidence at all that a rat had been inside the house. The banana was in a fruit bowl, in the kitchen which is on the upper floor of a two-storey house. So I left the remains of the banana there (no, not in the fruit bowl anymore…) to see if it returned.
    And so, the next morning I found the exact same bites taken out of the banana. Again, no evidence at all of its visit.
    So off to Bunnings to buy a trap. I didn't want to harm it in case it was a possum (we have some pygmy Possums nesting in our garden) or something else. The trap I bought is a cage with a spring loaded door that shuts when the animal steps on a plat to get the food. No poisons!
    I set the trap using the remains of the banana.
    Next morning, there it was!
    I wasn't sure about what it was, and I recalled seeing one in the same house before I bought it, about two years ago. What struck me was how cute it was with those big eyes and white under its mouth and neck. But I was sure it wasn't your usual rat.

    So after Googling it, I am sure that it what I had. Very lucky I didn't use poison or a killing-type trap!

  2. Leo, your rat is a small Australian nocturnal bush rat. (hence its ears that look a bit like bat ears) It's omnivore and one of the most common indigenous species found in Vic. and NSW.

    The other two most seen are the Black & the Brown rat. They're the big ugly ones that most ladies scream at & climb furniture to get away from. LOL. and can grow to 250mm long, with a tail longer than the head and body combined. They have a longer pointed nose, skinnier ears and a slender body. Best way to euthanise is a hard blow… but apparently the "animal lovers" hate anything besides the "green dream from a vet". Go figure!

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