"When people think of rodents, they usually think of introduced species such as
the black rat and house mouse. But Australia actually has around 54 native
rodent species, which live in a vast range of habitats across the continent,
from the ocean to spinifex-dotted deserts.
My research focuses on the broad-toothed rat, a vulnerable, chubby-cheeked
rodent that lives in parts of Tasmania and pockets of southern Victoria. It
even thrives beneath the snow in the Australian Alps and in Barrington Tops in
New South Wales.
You may have already heard of the broad-toothed rat from articles about the
damage feral horses do in Kosciuszko National Park, or as one of the species
living near the highly photogenic mountain pygmy possum.
But I don’t want to turn this into a debate about feral horses or a popularity
contest with the pygmy possum. As the broad-toothed rat rarely, if ever, gets
its own story, I want to introduce you properly to this fascinating, unique,
and beautiful species, focusing on those that live in Kosciuszko National
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics