Okay, I admit, I opted as a title for this blog entry, the (erroneous, as it happens) Latin name for the brown or common rat, mistakenly dubbed the ‘Norway’ or ‘Norwegian’ rat by John Berkenhout in his 1769 study Outlines of the Natural History of Great Britain, just so that fans of The Stranglers will come across this entry by mistake while trying to google the band’s first album.
I couldn’t help but rush back inside and grab the phone to snap this image, after wandering out on the balcony during a break in the recent torrential rain. The balcony tends to flood. There’s a tiny drainage hole in each corner, but it is usually blocked by the debris of macadamia nut shells, since one of the several macadamia trees around the house towers over this balcony. It is a favourite dining spot for possum and rats, who can often be heard chowing down in the ceiling in the early hours, having shelled their booty on the balcony.
The poor creature depicted must have been overwhelmed by the rising floodwaters during the downpour. It somehow managed to decompose without creating enough of a stink to be noticed.