Photo by Bob Gress
Total Length: 12-16 inches
Tail Length: 5-7 inches
Weight: 10-14 ounces
Eastern woodrats resemble a large mouse and are grayish-brown with a
white throat, belly, feet and a furry tail. They build their nests in rock ledges, tree
bases, brush piles, fencerows, old buildings and abandoned vehicles. Typical nests are
cone-shaped, 4 feet across and 3 feet high. Due to their habit of storing small
"treasures" in their stick nests, woodrats are often called "pack
rats." These treasures might include shiny bottle caps, pieces of colored glass and
empty shotgun shells. Two litters of 3-4 young are produced between February and
September. Maximum longevity is 3 years.
Eastern woodrats range from southeast to mid-central United States. They can be
found in woodlands throughout Kansas.
Eastern woodrats feed on buds, leaves, bark, nuts, fruits, berries, forbs and dry
Return to the Mammal's Den!
Text: George Potts and Bob Gress
Design: Jim Mason