Giant Rat Infestation in Moscow Causes Panic

Written by Camilla Jessen

Mar.13 - 2024 12:09 PM CET

Photo: Wikiamedia Commons
Photo: Wikiamedia Commons
A big problem in the Russian capital. Giant rats are causing panic in Moscow.

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Russian news outlets have sounded the alarm over a significant rodent issue in Moscow, reporting an infestation of large rats throughout the city. An expert sheds light on the origins of these animals in Russia.

Rats Flooded Moscow and Residents are Terrified

While the existence of rats in the streets and subways of a large city like Moscow is not unexpected (as other major cities encounter similar issues), the inhabitants of Russia's capital are particularly disturbed by the unusually large size of these creatures. Social media posts from residents point out that the rodents seen in residential areas are significantly larger than those seen in the past.

This issue is notably prevalent in the Kuntsevo district, where a video shared online from a local residential estate shows a sizable group of rats scavenging for food in the snow.

The Rats Came from China

Pavel Głazkov, a Russian biologist, has provided insights into Moscow's rodent issue, attributing the presence of large rats on the streets to a species originating from China, as reported by This influx is thought to be a result of the cold weather pushing the rats to the surface.

Głazkov notes that Russia has been home to rats for over a century, starting with black rats that arrived on merchant ships from India. These were eventually supplanted by larger, gray, or 'pied rats' from China. "Chinese rats are notably smart and adaptable, thriving in various conditions," he stated. While poisons and traps offer some control, Głazkov emphasizes that eliminating their food sources is essential for a permanent solution.

Moreover, the problem extends beyond Moscow, with St. Petersburg also facing challenges with these large rodents. They have become a concern for homeowners and particularly for drivers, as they tend to damage vehicles by chewing through wires.

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