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ISP: Mice vs Rats
Transcript of ISP: Mice vs Rats
The term "rats" is used to describe larger rodents with long tails
Many species of "mice", including deer mice, field mice, dormice, etc
Many species of "rats", including kangaroo rats, cotton rats, woodrats, etc
Most commonly referred to is the black (rattus rattus) or brown (rattus norvegicus) and house mouse (mus musculus)
Today we will be focusing on the brown rat (AKA Norway rat, sewer rat, house rat) and the house mouse. Differences in Appearance The most obvious difference between mice and rats is their size. Mice can weigh from 30-90 grams and can be 3-4 inches long. Compare that to the Norway rat, which weighs between 350-650 grams and can be 9-11 inches long. House Mouse (mus musculus) Norway Rat (rattus norvegicus) 3-4 inches long with 3-4 inch tails 9-11 inch long with 7-9 inch tails 30-90 grams 350-650 grams larger ears in relativity to head smaller ears in relativity to head large, wide heads and blunt muzzles small, triangular heads and pointed muzzles smaller feet in comparison to body larger feet in comparison to body http://www.ratbehavior.org/RatsMice.htm The History of Mice and Rats The Norway rat and the house mouse descended from a common ancestor. How long ago is under debate, with estimates ranging from 8 mya to 41 mya.
Both black and brown rats originally lived in Asia. They were accidentally brought to Europe and then spread to the Americas by ships. In North America, brown rats are much more common than black rats.
The ancestors of the house mice lived in Pakistan. When humans moved to colonize areas, the mice moved with them as stowaways. In the 16th century, they arrived in the New World. Since then, mice went everywhere with humans, living in or around their homes. 5 pairs of nipples 6 pairs of nipples Differences in Development In general, house mice tend to mature faster than Norway rats. House Mouse (mus musculus) Norway Rat (rattus norvegicus) Gestation period of 19-20 days Gestation period of 21-24 days Pups open their eyes at 3 days old Pups open their eyes at 6 days old Furred by 10 days Furred by 15 days Lactate for 2 weeks Lactate for 3 weeks Lifespan of 1.5-2.5 years Lifespan of 2-3 years Behaviours in the Wild Diet Both rats and mice are omnivores, but they have different food preferences. House Mouse (mus musculus) Norway Rat (rattus norvegicus) Prefer to eat cereals, seeds and nuts -Also like foods high in fat and protein, such as meats, sweets and butter Average house mouse requires 3 grams of food every day Can live without access to fresh water Do not hibernate, so must store food for winter Will eat almost anything -Including cereals, nuts, seeds, fruits, vegetables, fish, insects and even garbage Must have access to fresh water Do not hibernate either Living Patterns Both mice and rats usually live where people do. House mouse (mus musculus) Norway rat (rattus norvegicus) Build loose nests using shredded paper and fabrics Nests usually located behind rafters, in woodpiles, in storage areas, etc Dig burrows Prefers staying close to ground; likes damp places Excellent jumpers and climbers Good at climbing and swimming Mainly nocturnal Mainly nocturnal, but sometimes active during the day Social Both mice and rats are highly social creatures and live with other individuals of their species. House Mouse (mus musculus) Norway Rat (rattus norvegicus) Highly social Highly social Social hierarchy connected to protection of scent-marked territory Live in small family groups with social structure and defined territory Highly territorial, unrelated males will fight Highly territorial, males are known for aggression Mice with lower ranks will feed and mate while high-ranked mice are inactive (daytime) Has one or more dominant male Reproduction Both the Norway rat and house mouse reproduce at rapid rates, as prey animals tend to do. House mouse (mus musculus) Norway rat (rattus norvegicus) Reproduce all year long; no set breeding season Reproduce all year; in heat every 4-5 days Average of 8-10 litters annually for each female Females have an average of 3-6 litters annually Each litter contains 3-16 pups Each litter contains 8-9 pups Become sexually mature at around 5-6 weeks Become sexually mature at around 5 weeks (at youngest) Muricide and Compatibility Do mice and rats get along? Rat scent stresses mice out 
-Mice exposed to rat scent startle more for up to 2 days afterwards 
-Take 10x longer to start eating a treat 
-Produce smaller litters  70% of wild rats and 12% of domestic lab rats kill mice 
-a behavior known as muricide
-all rats who killed mice consumed some part of the mouse  In rare cases, pet mice and rats will get along Rat-Mouse Hybrids Are hybrids between rats and mice possible? Not possible naturally
-Rats and mice are not closely enough related
-Not attracted to each other and will not mate Egg and sperm can be put together artificially in lab
-Protective layer can be stripped off
-Sperm can be injected directly into the egg
-Fertilization occurs, but embryo dies within a few cell divisions Another way is to remove nucleus of one species' egg and insert it into the other species' egg
-Rat nucleus surrounded by mouse egg/cytoplasm or vice versa --> embryo dies after two cell divisions
-Mouse AND rat nucleus surrounded by mouse egg/cytoplasm --> embryo dies after 5 to 8 divisions Eggs have protective layer that only allow suitable sperm to enter
-If layer doesn't open up, no fertilization can occur So, while fertilization occurs, the rat-mouse hybrid never develops into an adult of its hybrid species. No, not usually, as wild rats prey on mice. Transgenic Rats HOWEVER... many transgenic rats have been created. A transgenic animal is one that has been modified by having a gene artificially inserted into its genome early in development This way, all cells contain this gene, and it can be passed onto offspring Many transgenic rats have been created, including those carrying a single mouse gene
-Done by taking a mouse gene from a mouse egg and inserting it into a rat egg
-The result is a rat with one mouse gene Cell Lines Also possible to create cell lines containing DNA of different species Mouse cell and rat cell fused together to create merged cell Kept in cell banks and used for research, but will never develop into an adult rat-mouse hybrid Pet Rats and Mice Pet rats and mice are descended from the Norway rat and house mouse, respectively
-Lab rats and mice were bred to be friendly and easy to work with
-Because of this, rats and mice have a typically friendly demeanor Contrary to popular belief, rats and mice are very clean, spending 1/3 of their waking hours cleaning themselves No more risk of disease than with a dog or cat Intelligent -- can learn simple tricks and respond to name
-Rats have been compared to dogs in intelligence Rats may be the better pet, as they are more intelligent and social towards humans Rats can learn to get along with dogs and cats
Mice, however, too easily become a snack and are more timid Rats, Mice and Humans Rats and mice often live near humans, whether it's the countryside or the city Cause damage every year that adds up to billions of dollars
-e.g., stealing food/crops, attacking livestock, chewing wires/furniture, etc Domesticated rats and mice are used in labs for testing purposes due to their high intelligence and similar responses to substances Can spread disease to humans and livestock
-This was the case with the famous plague (or black death), though the culprit was the black rat (rattus rattus) Have adapted very successfully to living close to humans
-Are a particular concern due to small size, year-round presence, fast breeding and ability to live indoors http://www.joinrats.com/RatHealth/OOPS/BirthToWeaningRatGuide/15756305_KVDQCt#!i=1192506540&k=n8MF2Pb http://windyhill08.webs.com/babymicedevelopment.htm http://www.poulins.ca/pests/19 Credit for pictures go to: http://www.fancymice.info/pregnantornot.htm Media Perceptions and Stereotypes Mouse Rat Filthy, disease-ridden, destructive (sometimes) Linked to poverty, filth and disease (often) Often perceived as clever Seen as mischievous and destructive People described as "rats" are usually liars, thieves or traitors On the flip side, sometimes seen as intelligent Sometimes get bad press like rats, but mostly get better views Bibliography "Difference between Rats and Mice." Difference between Rats and Mice. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. "Mouse vs Rat." - Difference and Comparison. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. "AFRMA - Pet Rats & Mice - General Care." AFRMA - Pet Rats & Mice - General Care. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. Ellis-Christensen, Tricia, and O. Wallace. WiseGeek. Conjecture, n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. https://www.lewisham.gov.uk/SiteCollectionDocuments/DifferenceBetweenRatsAndMiceInform "Mice and Rats." RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. "Mice and Rats." PAWS. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. "Artist Challenges Perceptions of Rats." NB Media Coop RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. Ludwig, Gerd, Eric Bye, and Regina Kuhn. My Rat. Hauppauge, NY: Barron's, 2010. Print. "Oh Rats! The Story of Rats and People [Hardcover]." Oh Rats! The Story of Rats and People: Albert Marrin, C. B. Mordan: 9780525477624: Amazon.com: Books. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. Various pictures from different websites [sources listed throughout presentation] and a youtube video. Classic examples: Tom and Jerry, Tale of Desperaux,
mouse in Narnia Classic examples: Tale of Desperaux, Ratatouille, Templeton from Charlotte's Web Stereotypes Rat Stereotypes
Mice Stereotypes Applicable to Both They are dirty [especially rats] They spread disease [especially rats] Rats bite [because they are vicious] They're dumb [more commonly rats] Mice are clever [and always outsmart the family cat] Dark, evil, malicious Pleasant, sociable "Frederick: Language Arts." Frederick: Language Arts. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Apr. 2013. Barron, James. "Love: A Furry, Long-Tailed Thing;Dispensing With Stereotypes by Keeping Rats as Pets." The New York Times. N.p., 20 Apr. 1996. Web. 30 Apr. 2013. <http://www.nytimes.com/1996/04/20/nyregion/love-furry-long-tailed-thing-dispensing-with-stereotypes-keeping-rats-pets.html?src=pm>. Covered in lice and fleas Heroic, brave [Just for fun] Mice and rats love cheese Destructive; criminals How Mice and Rats Help You Knowing the difference helps you when you have an infestation Rats and mice can make great pets Rats and mice help us advance in scientific and medical areas Whyntie, Jen. "One Rat Brain 'talks' to Another Using Electronic Link." BBC News. BBC, 28 Feb. 2013. Web. 30 Apr. 2013. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-21604005>. CNN. Cable News Network, n.d. Web. 30 Apr. 2013. <http://www.cnn.com/2009/HEALTH/07/28/spinal.injury.blue.dye/>. Rats can grow the size of cats -Example: Rat brains were found to "communicate" to each other with new technology   http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-21604005 -Blue dye was found to help treat spine injury, thanks to testing on rats   http://www.cnn.com/2009/HEALTH/07/28/spinal.injury.blue.dye/  Karli in 1956]  Calvo-Torrent et al. 1999
Hebb et al. 2003
Merali et al 2003
de Catanzaro 1988