Rats run rampant in Sydney Harbor, Australia

Australia can’t locate the Pied Piper so they trying an alternative solution to their big black rat problem

In the what-could-possibly-go-wrong department: Australia hopes to rid the Sydney Harbour area of black rats by introducing a different species of rat into the area, reports Reuters. The black rats are non-native invaders that probably arrived by ship 200 or so years ago, and they’re a huge nuisance near the harbour because they love the local plants, climb trees to eat birds’ eggs, and like to nest in humans’ houses.

black rats syndey harbour

Solution: Bring in the native Australian bush rat, which is said to have much nicer manners on all fronts. Authorities began the process yesterday by trapping and removing 40 black rats and setting free the same number of bush rats in the area. “We know from basic theory that if you have an intact native fauna then invaders can’t get into those areas,” explains a University of Sydney professor. “So we thought maybe we can use the same logic by taking black rats out and putting bush rats in.”

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Posted by on August 13, 2011. Filed under News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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2 Responses to Rats run rampant in Sydney Harbor, Australia

  1. Peter Lake

    August 13, 2011 at 10:09 am

    I think this is a bad idea because we know from experience that messing with Mother Nature usually backfires on us.

    • Dorothy Anderson

      August 13, 2011 at 5:15 pm

      Peter, it sounds like someone already messed with Mother Nature by accidentally importing the black rats, which are non-native invaders, to Australia.

      It seems like a more humane solution rather than throwing poison hither and yon.