Mastacomys fuscus mordicus (Thomas, 1922)

Broad-toothed mouse, Broad-toothed rat, Broad-toothed mastacomys



Taxonomy & Nomenclature

Synonym/s: Mastacomys mordicus Thomas, 1922 (original combination); Mastacomys wombeyensis Ride, 1956:431; Mastacomys fuscus brazenori Ride, 1956:436 [first synonymised by (Wakefield, 1972b:21) contra (Jackson & Groves, 2015:195)]


Conservation Status

Rediscovered. Previously the last record was the Late Pleistocene or Holocene.



Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales, South Australia (fossil) & Victoria, Australia


Biology & Ecology










Original scientific description:

Thomas, Oldfield. (1922). A new species of Mastacomys from a cave in South Australia. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (9) 10 : 550,1.


Other references:

Brazenor, C. W. (1950). The Mammals of Victoria: and the Dental Characteristics of Monotremes and Australian Marsupials (National Museum of Victoria Australia Handbook No. 1). Melbourne: Brown, Prior, Anderson. [p. 68]

Brown, Steven P. and Wells, Roderick T. (2000). A middle Pleistocene vertebrate fossil assemblage from Cathedral Cave, Naracoorte, South Australia. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia 124(2): 91-104.

Carron, P. L., Happold, D. C. D., and Bubela, T. M. (1990). Diet of two sympatric Australian subalpine rodents, Mastacomys fuscus and Rattus fuscipes. Australian Wildlife Research 17: 479-489.

DECC NSW (2007). Draft recovery plan for the Barrington Tops broad-toothed rat endangered population. Department of Environment andClimate Change (NSW), Sydney.

DEECA [Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action]. (2023). Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988 Threatened List: June 2023. Published report by The State of Victoria Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action, Melbourne, Victoria.

Eberhard, I. and Schulz, L. (1973). A survey of the vertebrate fauna of theCotter River Catchment, Australian Capital Territory. Department of theCapital Territory, Conservation Memorandum No. 10.

Green, K., Davis, N. E. and Robinson, W. A. (2014). Diet of the Broad-toothed Rat Mastacomys fuscus (Rodentia: Muridae) in the alpine zone of the Snowy Mountains, Australia. Australian Zoologist 37(2): 225-233.

Green, K. and Happold, D. C. D. (2023). Broad-toothed Rat, Mastacomys fuscus, pp. 416-418. In: Baker, Andrew M. and Gynther, Ian C. (eds.). Strahan’s Mammals of Australia (4th ed.). Wahroonga, NSW: Reed New Holland Publishers. 848 pp.

Green, K., and Osborne, W. S. (2003). The distribution and status of the broad-toothed rat Mastacomys fuscus (Rodentia: Muridae) in New South Walesand the Australian Capital Territory. Australian Zoologist 32, 229–237.

Green, K., and Sanecki, G. (2006). Immediate and short term responses ofbirds and mammal assemblages to a subalpine wildfire in the Snowy Mountains, Australia. Austral Ecology 31, 673–681.

Green, K., Stein, J. A., and Driessen, M. M. (2008). The projected distributionof Mastacomys fuscus and Rattus lutreolus in south-eastern Australiaunder a scenario of climate change: potential for increased competition?Wildlife Research 35, 113–119.

Happold, D. C. D. (1989). The value of faecal pellets for ascertaining thepresence of Mastacomys fuscus (Rodentia, Muridae) in field surveys.Victorian Naturalist 106,41–43.

Happold, D. C. D. (2002). Broad-toothed rat. In ‘The Mammals of Australia’. (Ed. R. Strahan.) pp. 562–563. (Reed Books: Sydney.)

Happold, D. C. D. (2015). A 10-year demographic study of a small mammal community in the Australian Alps. Aust. J. Zool. 63: 338-349.

Henderson, T. and Nest, C. (2024). Scat contents of a spotted-tailed quoll (Dasyurus maculatus) reveal evidence of broad-toothed rat (Mastacomys fuscus) within a fragmented habitat in the Hunter Valley, New South Wales. Australian Mammalogy 46.

Jackson, Stephen and Groves, Colin. (2015). Taxonomy of Australian Mammals. Clayton South, Melbourne: CSIRO Publishing. 529 pp. [p. 195]

Lintermans, M. (1986). The broad-toothed rat Mastacomys fuscus in theACT. ACT Parks and Conservation Services, Canberra.

Mahoney, J. A. and Ride, W. D. L. (1975). Index to the genera and species of fossil Mammalia described from Australia and New Guinea between 1838 and 1968. Western Australian Museum Special Publication 6: 1-250.

McDowell, Matthew C., Morris, Shane D., Johnson, Christopher N., Martin, Brianna and Brook, Barry W. (2023). Modelling of fossil and contemporary data suggest the Broad-toothed rat (Mastacomys fuscus) currently occupies a small part of its available climatic niche: Implications of paleontological data for conservation of a threatened species. Austral Ecology.

Milner, Richard N. C., Starrs, Danswell, Hayes, Greg and Evans, Murray C. Evans. (2015). Distribution and habitat preference of the broad-toothed rat (Mastacomys fuscus) in the Australian Capital Territory, Australia. Australian Mammalogy 37: 125-131.

O’Brien, C. M., Crowther, M. S., Dickman, C. R., and Keating, J. (2008). Metapopulation dynamics and threated species management: why doesthe broad-toothed rat (Mastacomys fuscus) persist? Biological Conservation 141: 1962-1971.

Pledge, Neville S. (1990). The Upper Fossil Fauna of the Henschke Fossil Cave, Naracoorte, South Australia. Memoirs of the Queensland Museum (Proceedings of the De Vis Symposium) 28(1): 247-262.

Reed, Elizabeth H. and Bourne, Steven J. (2000). Pleistocene fossil vertebrate sites of the south east region of South Australia. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia 124(2): 61-90.

Reed, Elizabeth H. and Bourne, Steven J. (2009). Pleistocene Fossil Vertebrate Sites of the South East Region of South Australia II. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia 133(1): 30-40.

Ride, W. D. L. (1956). A new fossil Mastacomys (Muridae) and a revision of the genus. Journal of Zoology 127(3): 431-439. [Abstract]

Schulz, Martin, Campbell, Catriona and Schroder, Mellesa. (Accepted). Mainland Broad-toothed Rat (Mastacomys fuscus mordicus): recovery after wildfire in northern Kosciuszko National Park. Australian Mammalogy. [Abstract]

Wakefield, Norman Arthur. (1972a). Paleoecology of fossil mammal assemblages from some Australian caves. Proceedings of the Royal Society of Victoria 85(1): 1-26.

Wakefield, Norman Arthur. (1972b). Studies in Australian Muridae: review of Mastacomys fuscus, and description of a new subspecies of Pseudomys higginsi. Memoirs of the National Museum of Victoria 33: 15-31.

Wood Jones, Frederic. (1925). The Mammals of South Australia. Part III. (Conclusion) Containing the Monodelphia. Adelaide: Government Printer. 3: 271-458. [21 December 1925] [p. 323 (species account)]


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