The Kangaroo Rat

Did you know that there are currently 22 species of the kangaroo rat? A Kangaroo rat is a fascinating and adorable mammal. It lives mostly in Mexico in a cool spot underground.

You know how most rats have little hind feet? Well not the kangaroo rat. The Kangaroo rat has hind feet like a kangaroos and body like a rat. A Kangaroo rat is a very cute animal with light brown to white fur. Its size is 10-20 cm (100-200) mm with a tail the same size or slightly bigger. The weight of this furry little animal is 1-6 ounces. These cute animals face has black eyes, big ears, and long sensory whiskers.

This wonderful rat lives two feet underground under a bush called the Creosote bush to keep cool. A hot dry place is a favorite for these rats so they live in Mexico, Australia, and the U.S.A. deserts. Their environment has little vegetation, very sandy, and is filled with rocks. Due to the hot, dry terrain the kangaroo rat sleeps in the cool of the underground by day, and comes out in the cool of the night.

This rat doesn’t hunt as you might guess. It gets food by coming out at night and forages for seeds. The kangaroo rats natural predator is the rattle snake. So it hides underground from it. When this little mammal jumps it uses its tail for balance and also as a rudder for turning at high speeds.

Someday if you’re lucky enough to see a kangaroo rat be sure to look at its feet and be ready for a leap.

by Patrick

picture from Wikipedia

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