The Recently Extinct Plants and Animals Database

Rattus macleari Thomas, 1887:513

Maclear’s rat, Captain Maclear's rat (Day, 1981)



Taxonomy & Nomenclature



Conservation Status

Last record: 1902

IUCN RedList status: Extinct



Christmas Island, Australia


Biology & Ecology




OUMNH 18841
OUMNH 18843
OUMNH 18844
OUMNH 18845
OUMNH 18846
CU E2077






Original scientific description:

Thomas, Oldfield. (1887). Report on a zoological collection made by the officers of H. M. S. 'Flying Fish' at Christmas Island, Indian Ocean. I. Mammalia. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1887: 511-514.


Other references:

Andrews, C. W. (1900). A Monograph of Christmas Island (Indian Ocean). British Museum of Natural History, London, UK.

Andrews, C. W. (1909). On the fauna of Christmas Island. Proceedings of Zoological Society, London 1909: 101-103.

Aplin, K. P. (2008). Maclear's Rat, Rattus macleari, pp. 693-694. In: Van Dyck, S. and Strahan, Ronald (eds.). The Mammals of Australia. Third Edition. Sydney, Australia: Reed New Holland.

Armstrong, P. H. (1992). Human impacts on Australia’s Indian Ocean tropical island ecosystems: a review. The Environmentalist 12: 191-206.

Chasen, F. N. 1940. A handlist of Malaysian mammals: A systematic list of the mammals of the Malay Peninsula, Sumatra, Borneo, and Java, including the adjacent small islands. Bulletin of the Raffles Museum, Singapore, 15:1-209.

Day, David. (1981). The Doomsday Book of Animals: A Natural History of Vanished Species. New York, N.Y.: The Viking Press.

Ellerman, J. R. 1941. The families and genera of living rodents. Vol. II. Family Muridae. British
Museum (Natural History), London, 690 pp.

Ellerman, J. R. 1949. The families and genera of living rodents. Vol. III, Appendix II [Notes on the rodents from Madagascar in the British Museum, and on a collection from the island obtained by Mr. C. S. Webb]. British Museum (Natural History), London, 210 pp.

Flannery, Timmothy Fridtjof. (1990). The rats of Christmas past. Australian Natural History, 23: 394-400.

Goodwin, Harry A. and Goodwin, J. M. (1973). List of mammals which have become extinct or are possibly extinct since 1600. Int. Union Conserv. Nat. Occas. Pap. 8: 1-20.

Green, Peter T. (2014). Mammal extinction by introduced infectious disease on Christmas Island (Indian Ocean): the historical context. Australian Zoologist 37(1): 1-14. [Abstract]

Harris, D. (2009). Review of negative effects of introduced rodents on small mammals on islands. Biological Invasions 11: 1611-1630.

Lamoreux, J. (2009). Rattus macleari. In: IUCN 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.2. ( Downloaded on 26 January 2012.

Lister, J. J. (1888). On the natural history of Christmas Island, in the Indian Ocean. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1888: 512-531.

MacPhee, R. D. E. and Fleming, C. (1999). Requiem Aeternam, pp. 333-371. The last five hundred years of mammalian species extinctions. In: MacPhee, R. D. E. (ed.). Extinctions in near time. New York: Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publisher.

Misonne, X. 1969. African and Indo-Australian Muridae: Evolutionary trends. Annales Musée Royal de l'Afrique Centrale, Tervuren, Belgique, Serie IN-8, Sciences Zoologiques, 172:1-219.

Musser, G. G. (1986). Sundaic Rattus: Definitions of Rattus baluensis and Rattus korinchi. American Museum Novitates 2862: 1-24.

Musser, G. G. and Carleton, M. D. (1993). Family Muridae, pp. 501-755. In: Wilson, D. E. and Reeder, D. M. (eds.). Mammal species of the world: a taxonomic and geographic referenceWashington: Smithsonian Institution Press.

Musser, G. G., and C. Newcomb. 1983. Malaysian murids and the giant rat of Sumatra. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History, 174:327-598.

Pickering, J. and Norris, C. A. (1996). New evidence concerning the extinction of the endemic murid Rattus macleri from Christmas Island, Indian Ocean. Australian Mammalogy 19: 19-25.

Sody, H. J. V. 1941. On a collection of rats from the Indo- Malayan and Indo- Australian regions (with descriptions of 43 new genera, species and subspecies). Treubia, 18:255-325.

Wilson, D.E. & Reeder, D.M. 2005 Mammal species of the world: a taxonomic and geographic reference. Third edition. Baltimore, MD: John Hopkins University Press.

Wyatt K. B., Campos P. F., Gilbert M. T. P., Kolokotronis S-O, Hynes W. H., et al. (2008). Historical Mammal Extinction on Christmas Island (Indian Ocean) Correlates with Introduced Infectious Disease. PLoS ONE 3(11): e3602.


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