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Living with Woodrats (Pack Rats)

Bushy-tailed Woodrat

Bushy-tailed Woodrat

Woodrats are found throughout most of the United States. Wood rats are more commonly called "pack rats" or trade rats because they collect or “pack-around” various objects and bits of material to deposit in, or use in the construction of their nests. Woodrats are especially fond of small, bright, shiny objects which they will readily confiscate, but bones, cow chips, and bits of wood are all common. When Woodrats encounter an interesting object they drop or trade what they are carrying for the new item, consequently the name “trade rat”. There are 8 species of woodrats in the U.S. but in Montana we have one, the Bushytail Woodrat.