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Fancy Black Rats?
What are the difference between brown and black rat for fancy? Out of better availability, is there some reason to favour brown rats? What are strenght and weaknesses of the black rat compared to the brown rat, when considered as a pet? Reply to David Latapie 18:55, 8 June 2006 (UTC)
- Brown rat (Rattus norvegicus) has been bred for docility mainly for laboratory purposes for thousands of generations and this is where the pet and fancy rats come from. Ship rats on the other hand, have never been selectively bred for handling and are therefore basically wild and untameable, and make terrible pets. Ship rats have several coat colours in the wild, one of which is black, hence the name. In New Zealand, most, in fact, are not black 188.8.131.52 08:46, 22 June 2007 (UTC) John Innes, Landcare Research
I know this is a kind of a question unlikely to be answered, but wth is that rat eating in the first picture? The whole scene is strikingly ghastly. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 184.108.40.206 (talk) 23:41, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
- Ghastly? It's a rat sitting on a carpet next to a table chair, eating what looks like a piece of carrot. (Caption says "black rat at London Zoo", but does the zoo really have a dining room as the rat habitat?) The black rats I see here in Los Angeles are never this black. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 220.127.116.11 (talk) 07:21, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
"Despite the black rats tendency to displace native species, it can also aid in increasing species population numbers and maintaining species diversity. The bush rat, a common vector for spore dispersal of mycorrhiza commonly known as truffles, has been extirpated from many micro-habitats of Australia. In the absence of a vector for spore dispersal of these truffles, the diversity of truffle species will decline. In a study conducted by Vernes et. al in New South Wales, Australia it was found that although the bush rat consumes a diversity of truffle species, the black rat consumes as much of the diverse fungi as the natives and is an effective vector for spore dispersal. Since the black rat now occupies the many of the micro-habitats that were previously inhabited by the bush rat, the black rat plays an important ecological role in the dispersal of fungal spores. By eradicating the black rat populations in Australia, the diversity of fungi would decline, potentially doing more harm than good."
Looks like OR, and illogical OR at that? Eradicating the BR would return to the status quo, and once the bush rat was re-established the diversity would be unchanged. (I am assuming that the BR displaced the bush rat here.) Rich Farmbrough, 22:12, 25 April 2011 (UTC).
Extinct in Sweden
The map File:Black rat distribution.png
is gravely erroneous. It seems to be based on another file of the Brown Rat distribution. Use this file File:Black rat range map.png, instead
It would be useful to include the distribution of the black rat in South America. In Chile the rat was introduced in 1540 and has become widely distributed and abundant according to Simonetti. --DegupediaDE (talk) 08:50, 3 August 2013 (UTC)
- Simonetti, Javier A. (1983). "Occurence of the black rat (Rattus rattus) in central Chile" (PDF). Mammalia. 47 (1): 131–132.
Giant gerbil as origin of the Plague
Revising the sentence "However, a recent study points to the giant gerbil as the source of the plague rather than the rat." This sentence misstates the conclusions of the study, and implies that gerbils were a significant plague vector in Europe, despite the fact that they were unknown in Europe until after the last plague outbreaks. What the study actually says is that gerbils and other central Asian rodents other than the black rat served as plague reservoirs between outbreaks; that there may have been no rodent plague reservoirs in medieval Europe, but that fresh outbreaks may have resulted from a combination of maritime introductions (certainly involving rats) as well as overland introduction via land trade routes (not involving rats, but humans, and perhaps camels, at least in Asia); and that to the extent that plague persisted in parts of Europe without clear exposure to new sources of plague via trade contacts, it may have been spread from rural to urban populations among humans. The study does not deny that rats were a potential vector in the introduction of the plague in maritime ports, nor that they would have been an effective vector in many parts of Europe once introduced. Rather, it seeks explanations for the introduction of plague in regions where rats had not yet penetrated, and explores the potential overland transmission of plague through infected persons and animals other than rats. Nowhere does it suggest that the presence of gerbils or other Asiatic rodents was directly responsible for the introduction or spread of plague in medieval Europe. P Aculeius (talk) 12:42, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
European plagues – vague wording, source needed
This statement needs some clarification, for instance: how does one rule out other species as potential sources of "natural rodent plagues" in those parts of Europe? What does "natural" mean in this context? Is there a published source supporting this statement? —Coconutporkpie (talk) 21:07, 7 August 2016 (UTC)