Rattus nativitatis (Thomas, 1889:533)
Bulldog rat, Christmas Island (burrowing) rat
Taxonomy & Nomenclature
Synonym/s: Mus nativitatis Thomas, 1889:533
Last record: 1897/1898 (Andrews, 1900)
IUCN RedList status: Extinct
It was long suspected that Rattus nativitatis became extinct because of a pathogenic trypanosome disease carried by fleas residing on Common Black Rat (R. rattus) which were introduced to the island. However, confirmation of this had been lacking until (Wyatt et. al. 2008). Last reported in 1897/1898, it was not found again in 1901-2 (limited search), 1904 (extensive search) or 1908 (extensive search). Thus it likely became extinct sometime between 1898 and 1904, but possibly pre-1902 as that search should have found specimens if they still existed.
Christmas Island, Western Australia, Australia
Biology & Ecology
Original scientific description:
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