I don't want rats, especially giant ones, running around my place, who does? But there's an air of old fashioned exploitation and titillation in this report on a giant rat killed -- by pitchfork, no less! -- in New York: Giant rat killed by pitchfork in Marcy Houses is believed to be Gambian pouched rat.The article gladly shows the color photo of killed, giant rate hanging from the prongs of the pitchfork. The article describes the rat's tail: "... [which is] hideously dangling." The rat is, specifically, a Gambian pouched rat, illegal in the U.S. since 2003, because the rats carried monkeypox which affected humans.
The rats are, as anyone who's had rats as pets knows, very intelligent, and sweet. These rats can be "... trained to sniff out landmines or even tuberculosis." That's as pets. In the urban wild they're not . Another sad contrast and fact of animals and humans living in the same space.