Rodents of Unusal Size is a documentary about massive, 20-pound swamp rats

Originally published at: Rodents of Unusal Size is a documentary about massive, 20-pound swamp rats | Boing Boing





Although I would be quite afraid to get near one, I find them cute from afar and I don’t like to see them get hunted.

Yeah, but, invasive species will absolutely destroy habitat and push out other cute species. You really gotta nip them in the bud.


Lived in Ukraine '95-'96. Had nutria for dinner a few times. People there raise them for fur and sell the meat. I liked it better than rabbit.

So, hunt those little invasive bastards down and eat them!


That’s always the dilemma if you like animals. Do any native predators eat nutria? Cougars, maybe.


Coyotes do, they eat anything.


They might, but there is no way there are enough cougars in Louisiana to control rodents like that.

That is usually the problem with invasive species, nothing wants to eat them. Like the lion fish and Asian carp. Hell the common house mouse and Norwegian and black rats were all imports, and even though things eat them, they are everywhere.

When you learn what was and was not native to the Americas before Columbus, it is shocking how different things were.

IIRC there was a campaign to get people to eat them.


We have invasive cotton tail bunnies in the High Desert, the jack rabbits are indigenous to the area. The fix is to get the coyotes to swing by and eat the cotton tails, it was easy, one bag of cheap dog kibble placed in small piles around the property and we have a nice pack of them brought down the population to near zero.

How do I know if it worked? Haven’t lost a veggie out of the garden in over a year…


As long as there is enough food predators tend to increase in numbers. At least as long as hunters don’t shoot them off, and having them help reduce a pest could make them more popular.


My dad’s house is a field in the back yard, where the city ends. He has coyotes, but he also gets rabbits in the garden. He will use a .22cb to dispatch them.

I remember one year growing up they were so bad that they were literally starving to death in the winter. Just had a huge population boom that year.

You definitely need a balance with predator/prey. But I feel while people my tolerate coyotes (until they eat pets), I don’t think people will tolerate a bunch of cougars.


We have a hidden predator, the “wasting disease” has reduced the rabbit population in the desert, the die off is in the huge numbers. Never seen a coyote go for a dog it’s same size or larger, they are low bearing fruit predators & expert scavengers. Yes, they will kill cats & small pets.


Decades ago, early 70s maybe, I went to a really lame little carnival in a shopping center parking lot. One of the attractions was a display of BLOODTHIRSTY GIANT RATS!

Picture a big white playwood enclosure mounted in the bed of a white pick-up truck. There was a little platform with stairs. You paid a quarter, walked up, and looked into a shaded window in back of the box. “Take all the time you want” said the friendly lady proprieter.

In the red-lit interior was a bed of hay and what I now recognize as nutria. They had those big teeth but didn’t seem very ferocious or bloodthirsty. Just kind of laid around.


But at feeding time, then the real show starts. /s


Diseases are a huge problem and global warming is exacerbating some diseases and parasites. Ticks just aren’t dying off like they used to. Deer have a wasting disease and other weird maladies. I just learned that in Minnesota, the deer are heading up north more often, intermingling with Moose, and exposing them to brain worms. Which while it doesn’t seem to hurt deer too bad, will destroy the moose brains. Ack zombie moose.

I wonder if hunting in the 30 years will be people with dart guns giving deer, moose, etc doses of anti parasite drugs. :confused:


The rabbit issue comes home when a dog bites a rabbit, you have to have your dog get a blood test ASAP. My pointer almost got one a few times, I hope she doesn’t, the Vet bill will be steep.


The lake in the middle of the beautiful park of Villa Pamphili, in the centre of Rome, was infested by this rodents.
They had progressively chased away the resident fauna (ducks, swans, some turtles) and rarer animals (sometimes you can still see cormorants, or some migrating birds) were no longer to be seen.

Luckily they have been thoroughly eradicated.

Here in Stockholm, we now see the return of beavers, with dams on some smaller canal and damaged trees.
At least they do not look like a 10 kg rat.


So you can literally say, save a tree, eat a beaver?


Yikes. Good vibes for your doggo.

I remember when mine found a rabbit nest and raggled a couple to death before I found him.


Do we need to breed some blue herons of unusual size?