Volume 21 Issue 6
Nov.  2000
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ZHANG Mei-Wen, GUO Cong, WANG Yong, HU Zhong-Jun, CHEN An-Guo. The Buff-Breasted Rats (Rattus flavipectus) in China. Zoological Research, 2000, 21(6): 487-497.
Citation: ZHANG Mei-Wen, GUO Cong, WANG Yong, HU Zhong-Jun, CHEN An-Guo. The Buff-Breasted Rats (Rattus flavipectus) in China. Zoological Research, 2000, 21(6): 487-497.

The Buff-Breasted Rats (Rattus flavipectus) in China

  • Received Date: 1900-01-01
  • Rev Recd Date: 1900-01-01
  • Publish Date: 2000-12-22
  • The buff-breasted rat,which distributes in southeast Asia and China,is one of most important pests in China.The animal not only causes the damage on property,but also is related to many human infection diseases.This paper reviewed the existing data about the species in China,in terms of morphology,taxonomy,geographical distribution,behavior,population ecology,physiology and the control.The buff-breasted rat is mainly distributed in south China,and the population density of the rat is high in the south and low in the north.The rats northern most distribution is at 40°N.The temperature is one of the important factors that restrict the distribution of the animals.The suitable temperature range for the animals is 25-30 ℃.Therefore,the warming climate is perhaps most important reason for the spreading and the increase of the population densities of the rats in north China.Moreover,the traffic development is also responsible for the spreading of the animals.The changes of house structure cause the decrease of the population densities of the rats in south China.The rats in south China inhabit both in the buildings and on the farmland.However,the rats in north China mainly inhabit in the buildings.This phenomenon perhaps relates to the differences of the climate between the north and the south.Its breeding cha racteristics are also different between the north and the south.In the south,it breeds all year around and has two main breeding seasons.But it has only one breeding season in the north.Its population fluctuations result from breeding status.The chromosome diploid number is 2n=42,containing 13 pairs of telocentrics or subtelocentrics,7 pairs of smaller metacenteic and XY sex chromosomes.There are some disbutes on its taxonomy.It is considered generally that the species has two subspecies in China,R.flavipectus yunnauensis and R.flavipectu s flavipectus.Some scholars,however,insisted that the two subspecies should be considered as two species.Others even considered that the differences of the animals distributing all over China are not enough to divide the animal into two subspecies.Based on the present available literature,the animal is related to more than 10 human infection diseases in China.Changing the house structure is one of efficient ways to manage the animals.Anticoagulants are suggested to be used to control the animal.
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