Overview

Distribution

Range Description

This species is recorded widely throughout Indochina, in Thailand and Koh Samui off the east coast of peninsular Thailand, Cambodia, central Lao PDR, and Viet Nam (including islands of Cham and Thô Chu off the coast of southern Viet Nam). Then in the Sunda Shelf from the Malay Peninsula, Sumatra, Java, Borneo, Kangean island, and Bali. It has been introduced in the Lesser Sunda Islands (on the islands of Lombok, Sumbawa, Sangeang, Komodo, Rintja, Flores, Adonara, Lembata, Alor, Sumba, Timor, and Tanimbar), and in the Philippines (Cebu, Luzon, Mindoro, Mindoro, Negros), Sulawesi and New Guinea (Musser and Carleton 2005). Corbet and Hill (1992), followed by Helgen (2003), recorded the species from Seram in the Moluccas, but Musser and Carleton (2005) could not substantiate its occurrence there.
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Geographic Range

Rattus argentiventer is found throughout Southeast Asia.

Biogeographic Regions: oriental (Native ); australian (Introduced )

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Physical Description

Morphology

Physical Description

Rattus argentiventer is a medium-sized rat with grizzed yellow-brown and black pelage that is not spiny when stroked. Its belly is grayish in the midline with whiter flanks. The dorsal sufaces of its hind feet are about the same color as its back and often have a dark spot or line. The tail is uniformly medium brown. Rattus argentiventer is 304-400mm long with a tail length of 140-200mm and a skull length of 37-41mm. (Van Peenen 1969)

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Type Information

Type for Rattus argentiventer
Catalog Number: USNM 277675
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Mammals
Sex/Stage: Male; Adult
Preparation: Skin; Skull
Collector(s): A. Gordon
Year Collected: 1945
Locality: Progreso, 1 mi SW, Mindoro, Mindoro Occidental Province, Philippines, Asia
Microhabitat: Coastal plain grassland
Elevation (m): 6
  • Type: Kellogg, R. 1945 Sep 20. Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington. 58: 121.
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
Its natural habitat was probably swampy grasslands, but today it occurs in rice fields, grasslands, and plantations (Payne et al. 1985) and is broadly commensal with humans.

Systems
  • Terrestrial
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Rice field rats primarily reside in cultivated areas such as rice paddies and grasslands. It is largely dependent on human rice fields and plantations. Rice field rats shelter in burrows in soil, under rocks, and in logs. They make nests from hollowed-out heaps of material, often in a burrow. (Nowak 1991, Barnett 1975)

Terrestrial Biomes: savanna or grassland

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Trophic Strategy

Food Habits

Rattus argentiventer is omnivorous, with a diet that includes termites, grasshoppers, snails, insects, rice, seeds, nuts, vegetables, and fruit. (Nowak 1991, Grzmick 1990)

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Life History and Behavior

Reproduction

Rattus argentiventer is polyestrous with a 4 to 5 day estrus and a continuous breeding season. Gestation lasts 3 weeks, with 3 to 8 young per litter and 1 to 12 litters a year. Rice field rats have 12 mammae. Female rats build a nest 3 to 5 days before parturition in which the young are born. They are born naked and blind but fully furred. After 15 days, their eyes open. Weaning occurs and the young leave the nest after 3 weeks. Young Rattus argentiventer reach sexual maturity at 3 months. All young experience maternal care and are reared with their litter mates. The male rat plays little part in the care of the young. (Ansell 1960, Nowak 1991, Hamilton 1939)

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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Rattus argentiventer

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 0
Specimens with Barcodes: 2
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2008

Assessor/s
Ruedas, L., Aplin, K. & Lunde, D.

Reviewer/s
Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Schipper, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)

Contributor/s

Justification
This species is listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution, adaptability to disturbance, large population, its occurrence in a number of protected areas, the absence of threats, and because the population is considered to be stable.
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Rattus argentiventer has no special conservation status.

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: least concern

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Population

Population
This species is extremely abundant near human habitation and settlement.

Population Trend
Stable
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Threats

Major Threats
There are no major threats to the species.
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
It is present in several protected areas across its range.
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Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Economic Importance for Humans: Negative

Rattus argentiventer is often responsible for depredations on rice fields and gardens. It is the fourth most damaging rodent to rice crops. (Grzmick 1990, Nowak 1991)

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Wikipedia

Rice-field rat

The Rice-field Rat, Rattus argentiventer is a species of rat found throughout Southeast Asia.

Description[edit]

The Rice-field Rat is a medium-sized rat with a grizzed yellow-brown and black pelage. Its belly is gray in the midline with whiter flanks. The tail is uniformly medium brown. They have chisel-like incisor. The Rice-field Rat is between 304-400mm long with a tail length of 140-200mm and a skull length of 37-41mm. The average weight of Rattus argentiventer is around 97 to 219 g. Female have 12 mammae. Young have an orange-colored tuft in front of each ear.

Behavior[edit]

Rice-field rat lives in large groups which consist of a dominant male and high ranking female. When attacked or disturbed they will make squeals and whistles sound. Rattus argentiventer's main diet includes termites, insects, grasshopper, snails, seeds, nuts, rice, vegetables and fruits. They feed at night and actively moving at dusk and dawn. During daytime, they can be seen among vegetation, weeds or maturing field. Rice-field rat undergoes 3 week gestation giving birth about 5 to 10 young per litters.

Habitat[edit]

Rice-field Rats primarily reside in cultivated areas such as rice paddies and grasslands. It is largely dependent on human rice fields and plantations. Rice field rats shelter in burrows in soil, under rocks, and in logs.

Biomes[edit]

Distribution[edit]

Ricefield Rat can be found throughout Southeast Asia consists of Indochina region, Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippine, and New Guinea as major rodent pest in rice field area.

Parasites[edit]

Parasites of Rice-field Rat include:

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ruedas, L., Aplin, K. & Lunde, D. (2008). Rattus argentiventer. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved January 2009. Database entry includes a brief justification of why this species is of least concern
  2. ^ Inder Singh, K.; Krishnasamy, M.; Ambu, S.; Rasul, R.; Chong, N. L. (1997). "Studies on animal schistosomes in Peninsular Malaysia: Record of naturally infected animals and additional hosts of Schistosoma spindale". The Southeast Asian journal of tropical medicine and public health 28 (2): 303–307. PMID 9444010.  edit
  • P. Junaidi, F.M.Charles & P.Karen. 1985. A Field Guide To The Mammals Of Borneo.The Sabah Society.
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