Hydromys chrysogaster Skull Replica measures 2.3 inches. Hydromys chrysogaster Skull is museum quality polyurethane resin cast. Known as the Australian Water Rat

The Australian Water Rat, Rakali or Hydromys chrysogaster, also known as Rabe or water-rat, is an Australian native rodent first described in 1804.

It is the only member of the genus Hydromys with a range extending beyond Papua New Guinea and Indonesian West Papua.

Australian Water Rat or Hydromys chrysogaster body is streamlined with a skull that is large, flat and elongated, with two molars on the upper and lower jaw, similar to the False water rat Xeromys myoides.

Hydromys chrysogaster are black to brown in color with an orange to white belly, and dark tail with a white tip.

Humans have been their greatest predator, with Hydromys chrysogaster requiring protection by legislation in 1938. They were hunted for their soft fur and considered a pest species.

Populations are considered to have recovered and in all states considered of ‘least concern’ with the exception of Western Australia.

Considered a pest in irrigation systems due to burrowing into banks and creating leaks, in a positive sense they have also been attributed to reduction of bank damage as they prey on freshwater crayfish (yabbies).

They were still under destruction permits from 1938 to 1957 due to alleged destruction of irrigation banks and destruction of fishing nets. From 1957 to 1967 a number of licensed seasons were also held for this reason.

Predators of the Hydromys chrysogaster range from large fish and snakes when they are young and in the water, to birds of prey, foxes and cats. They have the unusual ability to kill cane toads without being poisoned.