This rat is a smart little fellow. He doesn’t just rely on his quills and his black and white warning colors to keep him safe. He has learned how to chew up toxic bark, then spread the drool onto his quills. The poison can be lethal (and in fact is used by African hunters for hunting elephants and rhinos). No one is sure how the rat learned this trick or how babies are taught. Scientists are also unsure of why the poison doesn’t affect the rat when he is chewing on the bark. The more we learn…the more questions we have!
Check out National Geographic for the complete story.