What Do Rats Eat

What Do Rats Eat

If you’ve ever seen a rat inside of your home, there is a good chance that it was one of two types. It was either a brown or black rat, and both of these animals are omnivores, so they enjoy eating waste, grains and fruits. They’ll also sink their teeth into any human foods that aren’t secured.

Since they eat both meat and plant matter, rats have been known to eat various invertebrates if these food items become available. When compared with black rats, brown rats are much more carnivorous, and they’ll eat more types of meat.

In fact, some brown rats have been observed fishing for food. Unfortunately, rats can also be extremely annoying because they’ve been known to destroy livestock feed. You can find these two major types of rats on virtually every continent on the planet.

They’ve been known to hitch a ride on large travel ships, but it’s quite rare to see both types of rats in a single location. An interesting fact: brown rats actually kill all of the black rats that they come across.

One of the main reasons why people have feared these creatures is because they’re known to carry a wide variety of deadly diseases. Most of these viruses are carried by fleas that hitch a ride on the backs of the rats.

What Rats Eat In the Wild

Pet rats enjoy a well-balanced diet, but wild rats are likely to have a diet that is much different. When living in a natural environment, these creatures have been known to eat virtually anything they can find.

Depending on where they live, some wild rats end up starving or having nutritional problems. The wild rat is an omnivorous and opportunistic animal. It will eat seeds, vegetables, nuts, grains and fruits.

It might also perform occasional hunting and could end up killing other small animals or bugs. Rats that live near cities are likely to forage through dumpsters in an attempt to find something to eat.

Kangaroo Rats

These rats enjoy eating mesquite beans, but they’ll eat several different types of seeds found in desert grasses. Some of the seeds comes from grama, ocotillo, purslane, bush and creosote grasses. You can even find kangaroo rats consuming insects and green vegetation.

These animals like to forage for seeds and will store anything that they can find inside of pouches that are located inside of their cheeks. They’ll hold the seeds inside of their pouch until they can bring them back to their storage location.

Baby Rats

Like most other animals, rats can make some cute babies. If you have a baby rat, you can feed it solution from a bottle. Once it ages a bit, you can begin feeding it things like rat blocks, tiny pieces of vegetables and fruit, and you can even feed it oatmeal and various grains.

Naked Mole Rats

The naked mole rat is quite possibly one of the weirdest-looking creatures on the planet. These animals are known to feed on massive tubers, which can weigh over 1,000 times the bodyweight of the rat.

They can find these tubers deep underground through their extensive mining operations. One of these massive tubers can provide plentiful food for an entire colony of naked mole rats. The naked-mole rats actually eat the inside of the tuber and leave the outside, so it’s able to regenerate.

What Do Pack Rats Eat?

These animals enjoy eating a variety of foods, but some of their favorites are shoots, twigs and green vegetation. These are the main components of a pack rat’s diet. Mexican pack rats are known to eat cactus, acorns, fruits and seeds.

Nutria Rats

These are the giant creatures that you’ve probably seen at a local pond or similar location. They basically look like giant rats because they are. These animals are varied eaters but love to consume aquatic plants and roots.

They also enjoy a good dinner filled with mussels, snails or other small creatures. The nutria can be a very social animal and tends to live in large colonies while constantly reproducing.

Roof Rats

You might’ve seen a few roof rats throughout your life. These animals enjoy eating fresh fruits, nuts, seeds and plant materials. They’ll also eat tree bark, vegetables and bird feed, and the feed is one of their favorite meals.