One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A rat found throughout the world, typically living in association with man and regarded as a pest. It is commonly kept as a laboratory animal and as a pet, and is also bred in the albino form.
Rattus norvegicus, family Muridae
- ‘Rats and mice also shared the peoples houses; the mice were the same as the modern house mouse, but the rats were the slightly smaller black rats, not the brown rats of modern cities.’
- ‘Many people mistake the endangered water vole for the brown rat and accidentally poison them or disturb their burrows.’
- ‘For instance, black and brown rats were brought to America, and gray squirrels and muskrats to Eurasia.’
- ‘Only three out of twenty-seven species of mammals in Kuwait are not endangered, and they are the house rat, brown rat, and house mouse.’
- ‘Originating in Asia and arriving in North America about 1775, the brown rat is humanity's worst animal pest.’
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