Rattus norvegicus is a common organism, also known as the brown rat or Norway rat.   The majority of the fur color is brownish; however, it is common for the coat to have shades of grey or black mixed in.  This rodent originated from Central Asia, but due to human's expedition for exploration, this mammal tagged along to become colonized throughout six of the seven continents, excluding Antarctica. [6]  This creature is very agile and cautious of their surroundings.  The Rattus norvegicus prefers darker areas and is generally accustomed to urban areas.  However, they are very adaptive to the extremes that climates can present.



Though this creature is very small and has fur like other mammals such as the Eastern grey squirrel snowshoe hare, moose , and domestic cat it somehow manages to instill fear throughout people.  Generally speaking, I would say the rat is just as scared  of humans as some humans are of it.  The brown rat would see humans as a threat or predator; therefore, it will scurry away instinctively to survive.  Though consistent interaction and training with humans allows wild species to become tame or domesticated as pets.

In Europe, the Norway rat evolved about 7 centuries after the black rat.  The ancestors of the Rattus norvegicus and Rattus rattus diverged from each other around 2 million years ago.  Rattus norvegicus  bones were found in Northern Germany dating back to as early as the 9th century; though it wasn't until 1775 that they were credited  for on the Eastern coast of the U.S. [5]

If you are curious or interested in learning about other organisms, please feel free to check out



Next to: Classification