Rat Predators

Unfortunately, for rats they taste rather good for some people and animals. They are low on the food chain, meaning that a large number of animals happily eat them. Large predators such as snakes may eat a whole rat in one go whereas smaller animals may eat them gradually a bit at a time. They may not be the first choice meal for many but they will certainly do if no other food source is available.



In the out of doors, one type of enemy and predator of rats are large birds of prey. The most common large birds of prey that feed on rats are: falcons, hawks, owls. The bird of prey that poses the most significant threat to rats is the owl. The reason an owl poses the biggest threat to rats when contrasted to other large birds of prey is because rats are largely nocturnal animals. Owls are most active at night as well.


Snakes generally eat eggs, birds, and small mammals, including squirrels, rats, and mice. Rat snakes, as can be guessed from their name, often prey on rats. Rat snakes are not venomous, so they kill their prey through constriction. There are dozens of species, and they can be found all over the world. The black rat snake, which can grow to be over eight feet long, is the longest snake in North America.


In urban areas, humans tend to be the primary enemy of rats. In urban areas, rats will attempt to lodge in homes, business, and other locations used by or under the control of humans. Thus, humans end up being intent on eliminating these rodents, turning them into primary enemies of rats


Possums actually hunt, kill, and consume the largest number of rat and mice among all the predators available. They are one of natures finest scavengers, and in true scavenger fashion will eat anything, including rats, dead or alive.


Since weasels have a small head and long, tiny body, they are able to sneak into the burrows of any ground-dwelling animal it feels like feeding on. Mostly weasels go for baby rabbits, baby birds, and eggs. However, because the weasel is known to lose heat fairly quickly, it means that it has to eat often to keep warm. And since rats are so common and known to reproduce rapidly, there is always a fresh meal nearby for the weasel to snack on, therefore for weasels rats are never off the menu.


It is no secret that cats, especially wild cats like bobcats and mountain lions, hunt rodents. Domestic cats may or may not hunt or play with mice and rats. In fact, many major urban areas experiencing rat problems are enlisting feral cats to hunt the rodents, and help keep populations under control.


Though, this may come as a surprise, but it is true, besides other types of food, sometimes rats do eat other rats. While food shortage definitely contributes to rats feeding on their kin, it is actually most commonly seen in new mothers eating their own young. They do this partly as an act of kindness, so their offspring wont grow up starving, and partly to take care of themselves.

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