Observations on the Kiore, or Indigenous Eat of New Zealand.
3. “Observations on the Kiore, or Indigenous Rat of New Zealand,” by F. J. Knox, L.R.C.S.E. After a careful examination of the Black Rat, described by Mr. Buller as the Native Rat, the author could find no point of anatomical difference, except that it had forty instead of thirty joints in its tail. The hair and fur differ in colour and softness, but it had been microscopically examined by Mr. Buchanan, and was found to have the same structure, the coarse hair being marked in both with scaly bars, and the fine hair or fur being simply striate—this being very different from the structure of that of Rodents allied to the rabbit, in which the fur is longitudinally grooved as well as striate. The author presented a splendid skin of the Brown or Norway Rat, which measured 12.5 inches in length, without the tail, which was 8 inches in length. He also stated that if Mr. Buller's rat was the real Mus rattus, as had been suggested, it was the first he had seen, it not being common in Scotland.
The President reminded members that in Sir George's Grey's collection of Maori legends there is a circumstantial account of how the natives in one of their canoes from Hawaiki introduced the rats in boxes.