Norway Rat
Norway Rat Facts »

Scientific Name:

Rattus Norvegicus


Usually grayish-brown, but color varies from a pure gray to a reddish brown; hard to identify by color alone


10-16 ounces; larger than Roof Rat


7-10 inches

Tail Length:

6-8 inches; shorter than the body


Heavy & thick body, blunt nose


Relatively small; close to body


Large & protruding black eyes


5 to 12 months


¾ inch long with blunt ends; dark color; found in groupings

Other Names: Brown Rat, Gray Rat, Common Rat, House Rat, Wharf Rat, Water Rat, Barn Rat, Sewer Rat, Super Rat


Daily Amount:

0.5-1 ounce

Daily Water:

1-2 ounce

Daily Food:

Cereal grains, meats, seeds, cockroaches, fruits, shrimp



Throughout the US and Canada

Nest Location:

Burrows in soil, sewers, basements, lower portion of buildings

Home Range:

25-100 ft. from nest

Active Periods:

Nocturnal; most feeding occurs 30 minutes after sunset and before sunrise


Litter Size:

8-12 pups per litter

No. of Litters:

4-7 per year

Sexual Maturity:

2-3 months

Gestation Period:

22 days

Breeding Season:

Indoors: All year; Outdoors: Spring & Fall

Top 10 High Activity Areas

  • Basements
  • Beneath wood piles
  • Near or beneath outside dog pens
  • Garage walls near heaters and stored food
  • Beneath low-lying decks
  • Beneath slab walkways
  • Within brick foundation wall voids
  • Beneath low-lying and cavernous shrubbery
  • Within 100 ft of dumpsters and garbage cans
  • Beneath slabs supporting food bins
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