New Species of Giant Rat Found

A discovery has been made by a BBC film crew who were making a programme in Papua New Guinea. Whilst filming in an extinct volcano, the crew discovered around 40 new species, including exotic creatures such as fanged frogs and a giant woolly rat – each one previously unknown to science.

A team of biologists lead by Doctor George McGavin were amazed that the found one of the new creatures within minutes of landing their helicopter in Mount Bosavi. After setting foot on the ground in the rim of the crater, Allen Allinson (one of the BBC Natural History team who is an amphibians specialist) spotted the frog. He apparently “nearly trod on it”. The head scientist Dr McGavin described the discovery as “mind blowing”.

One of the most impressive finds was a enormous woolly rat measuring almost 3ft long and weighing around 3lbs; the film crew managed to catch the animal on camera after setting up an infra-red camera trap. To our knowledge, the rat only lives in these densely wooded slopes around the crater and cannot be found anywhere else in the world. With absolutely no fear of humans, the creature has been provisionally named the ‘Bosavi Woolly Rat’.

The cameraman Gordon Buchanan first spotted the rat, and said that it was equally as large as a cat he once had. Despite having never been exposed to a human being before, the rat was remarkably tame. As a vegetarian, it just sat next to the film crew nibbling on a leaf, showing no signs of discomfort at the team’s proximity.

The rat lives inside the 1000m high crater walls and has to endure cold wet winters. Its long woolly coat of silver brown fur will help its survival during these periods. In 2007, another kind of giant woolly rat was found in the Foja Mountains in Papua New Guinea which belonged to the rodent genus Mallomys; this one was discovered by Conservation International. The latest discovery is thought to belong to the same genus.

With so many unexplored parts of the land and sea, scientists are expected to make more discoveries over time. This expedition uncovered new species of fish, frog, insect and bat. Girls such as London escorts probably wouldn’t want to be exposed to all those unknown creepy crawlies, but it’s an interesting find all the same!