Rats are quite different from mice because the latter has got a comparatively bigger size. You can find different images of rats and mice in Pinterest to really understand the difference. A pair of rats can produce at least twelve young in a few days. They reach maturity once in around three months. In a single year, if they get enough supply of food, water and shelter, they can produce more than six hundred rats between them. Since they display a good ability to learn, they have been used as test subjects for many scientific researches. As per www.discovermagazine.com, rats are considered as active prosocial species.
If the studies are to be believed, then Antarctica is the only place you will not find any rats. The reason is that the rats cannot handle severe climate conditions. Different countries have got different aspects about the rats, like the fact that rats are considered to be one of the Chinese zodiacs and there is a whole temple dedicated to rates in India. There are a lot of myths about rats all over the world. Another myth is that if there are rats, then cats can control the rat population and bring them down to naught. However, this is not entirely true because generally, a cat tends to hunt rats according to its size. Not only this, but rats can hide in places where the cats cannot reach.
Cheese is often considered the best way to bait a rat. However, this is again a wrong misconception. There are a lot of things such as meat, chocolate etc. that can also be used for rat-baiting. It is a fact that rats have got the tendency to make any place unhealthy and difficult for human beings to live in. Many diseases can be passed to humans from rats, some of which can even lead to death. Diseases can be spread directly as well as indirectly through flies, their droppings or their bite and contamination of food and water occurs through their urine, fur and droppings.
The question here is whether rats are nocturnal or not. The answer, in short, would be yes, rats are nocturnal creatures. If their populations increased beyond what they are today, you will be able to see them during daytime. Brown rats will be active during the day as well as night while sewer rats prefer the cover of darkness. During the night, rats find it easier to find food and prey. They have good sight and a good sense of smell which helps them find food quickly and discreetly. When you see a rat during the daytime, you can safely assume that the population of rats has increased and that it is time to do something to whittle down the population.
Rats can sleep up to fifteen hours during the winter. After that, they will need to leave the nest to hunt for the prey. In the darkness, they do not have to worry about to many predators and can search for food peacefully. Even though you might see rats in the daytime, remember that it is not because they are hungry, but because there are so many of them.