Looking for a dry place to nest

One of the hazards of keeping vehicles in a rainforest environment is the frequent occurrence of Native Rats taking up residence under the bonnet of vehicles and creating a nest.  I have heard tales of very expensive nests made from the wiring …….. we have had a few chews over the years but nothing too serious.
Our main problem has been with Fawn-footed Melomys deciding that the chamber which houses the fan of the air-conditioning unit is the perfect place for a nest.  When we drove out earlier in the week we put on the air conditioning, as its fairly warm at the moment. At first it sounded like a leaf was caught in the air con. fan but the noise rapidly became a loud, “thwack, thwack” so we turned off the fan and wound down the windows.  Today we took our vehicle into the mechanic for him to have a look at the problem and about 30 mins later there was a call to say it was all fixed.

There were some leaves in the chamber, also a piece of twine AND a sock!! Clever little Melomys! Thank goodness she didn’t do any major chewing damage, well apart from my sock which doesn’t look quite the same!

No wonder the fan was having trouble operating with all that tangled around it.

Nesting material

Nesting material

2 responses to “Looking for a dry place to nest

  1. Big pile of nesting material for what I assume is a small Marsupial.

  2. Denis, I should have put in more information. Melomys s a genus of rodent in the family Muridae, they are not marsupials. Melomys cervinipes is the Fawn-footed Melomys, it is very common in these parts. When they are not trying to nest in the car they make nests from grasses, usually in shrubs. And yes it is a lot of nesting material for such a small creature and it must have dragged it a few metres. I know where I left the socks! and I have now removed the other one so it doesn’t happen again.

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