Pale field rat

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Pale field rat
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Rodentia
Family: Muridae
Genus: Rattus
Species: R. tunneyi
Binomial name
Rattus tunneyi
(Thomas, 1904)

The pale field rat (Rattus tunneyi), also known as Tunney's rat,[1] is a nocturnal herbivore endemic in Australia. It once occupied almost all areas of mainland Australia, but is now found only in tall grasslands in northern Australia.[2]

The pale field rat is yellow-brown and either grey or cream on the underside. It eats grass stems, seeds and roots, and during the day rests in a shallow burrows dug in loose, crumbly soil. With the introduction of cattle, its habitat has been negatively affected by soil compaction. Feral cats also devastate populations.[3]

The rats have become regionally extinct in some areas of its former range.

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.uniprot.org/uniprot/Q91VB3
  2. ^ Morris, K., Burbidge, A., Aplin, K. and Ellis, M. (2008). Rattus tunneyi. In: IUCN (2008). 2008 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
  3. ^ http://www.theage.com.au/environment/feral-cats-devastating-threat-to-native-animals-laid-bare-20121228-2bzdz.html