In human epoch among animal species that got a big advantage, had the ability to successfully co-exist with humans. And a very great success at this time have commob (Rattus norvegicus) and black rat (R. rattus). They managed to occupy almost all the islands, formerly colonized people, and had survived his "patron" and worst enemy. Actively evolving, the population of rats, who were able to survive the ice age formed in Neocene epoch new species and genera, adapted to local conditions.
In Hawaii, the descendants of the black rat (Rattus rattus) have begun to actively explore the forest, which began to be restored in the era of global warming. Black rat xerophilous more than gray, and have better skills climber. And Hawaiian descendants of these animals have developed and strengthened their inherited a legacy of skills. They have turned to specialized climbing creatures - Hawaiian flower rats. This small species of rodents with tenacious legs and prehensile tail, which holds all life in the trees and leads strictly nocturnal.
Hawaiian flower rat does not exceed the size of a normal house mouse. It is notable contrast black-and-white color: in this animal's head and body are black, and the legs, throat and belly are white. The tail of this rodent is relatively long: it is a bit longer than the head and body combined. The tail is very flexible, prehensile, covered with grayish-pink skin with some bright bristles. On the underside of the tail bristles form transverse rows - this device for a more durable obhvatyvaniya branches. If necessary, small animal can even hang on the tail.
Five-fingered paws of the animal armed with sharp claws. If necessary, floral rat can run along the trunk of the tree up and down as fast as on the ground. The foot she can turn back as a squirrel. This animal can hang on a branch holding its hind legs, or down the barrel upside down.
Hawaiian flower rat eats mainly nectar eating in addition to soft-bodied insects - aphids, caterpillars and small beetles. animal muzzle thin and long, and the incisors are relatively weak. But the tongue may protrude far out, and at his end of the developing characteristic nektaroyadnyh animals brush.
Because Hawaiian flower rat is a nocturnal animal, she has very good hearing and ears rounded and wide. animal's eyes are very large, sensitive even to the dim light of the stars. But most of all, this small mammal relies on his sense of smell: the night many nectar trees begin to emit a fragrance, attracting pollinating animals.
This animal has an interesting feature of biochemistry: rat can easily neutralize the vegetable poisons. Therefore, to avoid competition with local birds, it often feeds on native trees of the family Euphorbiaceae - tailed tree acalypha. the Rat simply licking nectar from the long bright inflorescences, hanging from the branches of this plant.
This kind comes out only at night to feed and spends the day hiding in the cavities of tree trunks. Most flower rat settles directly on the plant, which is fed in the hollows of trees. This animal lives in small colonies - about a dozen adults and their offspring. Day floral rat hiding in shelters, but continued to lead an active life: it climbs inside the cavity of a tree trunk, looking for insects, hiding from the rain or the heat of the day. Only in the hottest afternoon hours, shortly before the afternoon rain, floral rats fall asleep. By evening, they become more active and go out after sunset to feed.
Up to four times a year the female brings posterity: from five to nine - ten cubs. Newborn cubs are hairless and blind, the female hides them in the shelter - usually in a deep narrow hollow. Sometimes two or three females grow together and feed a few litters without sharing their own and others' cubs. The two-week cubs start to leave the nest, even a week later they learn to climb trees, and at this time looks after them one by one, each of the females. The female householder at this time leaves the offspring briefly, if at all drags cubs in another hollow, where the closer flower tree on which it feeds. Monthly cubs completely leave the shelter, and begin to learn from their own mother to find food and hide from enemies. In the first four months of age females of this species may have their own offspring.
Hawaiian flower rats do not live long: three years for their age into old age. Most of the animals of this species are killed, reaching only half that age.