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  • You're probably familiar with rats,

  • because they live pretty much everywhere.

  • But here are five facts you didn't

  • know about our furry, rodent friends.

  • Number one, New York City may have the biggest rat

  • infestation in the world.

  • If you haven't seen the hilarious but horrifying videos

  • of New York rats on YouTube, you're

  • going to want to check them out.

  • In one of them, a person is asleep on a subway

  • bench while a rat climbs up his leg and onto his lap.

  • NYC has declared a war on rats, and budgeted more than half

  • a million to an anti-rat program.

  • Number two, rats can swim up the pipes into your toilet bowl.

  • It's a rare occurrence, but a frightening reality

  • in towns with older sewage systems.

  • Rats can get lost in the pipes and tread

  • water for days, seeking a way out.

  • If you ever encounter one in your toilet,

  • just know that it's very tired from swimming,

  • and probably won't be aggressive.

  • But still, I mean, don't touch that.

  • Number three, there is a Rat Island off the coast of Alaska,

  • and it used to be full of rats.

  • In 1780, a Japanese boat shipwrecked

  • there and a few rats who were on board quickly

  • overran the native species, including some endangered

  • birds, like the bald eagle.

  • But in 2010, the US Fish and Wildlife Service

  • eradicated the rats on Rat Island.

  • So now the name is just ironic, and very cool.

  • Number four, a rat's front teeth can grow five inches in a year.

  • That's why they're always gnawing on things,

  • to grind them down.

  • The teeth can grow fast or slow, depending, on the rat's diet.

  • And rats don't get cavities because they just

  • get worn away as the teeth grow.

  • Number five, scientists say that rats can laugh

  • and they can dream.

  • Dr. Jaak Panksepp from Washington State University

  • says that rats emit a high frequency chirp when

  • they play together, or when a hand tickles them.

  • And at MIT, scientists say that's their lab

  • rats were dreaming of running a maze.

  • They recognized the same brain wave activity

  • in sleeping rats that occurred in wakeful rats that

  • are running a maze.

  • Have you ever seen a rat in your toilet bowl?

  • Tell us your story in the comments.

  • And don't forget to subscribe to animalist.

  • And if you're still craving knowledge of new stuff, head

  • over to "Life Noggin," a show that educates you on pop

  • culture, science, art, and history.

  • New episodes every Monday.

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5 Fascinating Facts About Rats

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    陳貞吟 posted on 2016/05/07
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