Holy cow. Or maybe that should be holy rodent: a gigantic rat has been found in London and a photo of it has sent the internet ballistic. The dead animal was found by gas engineer Tony Smith near a children’s playground (any parents reading, take note) while he was working on a block of flats in Hackney Downs.
‘This is the largest rat I've ever seen in my entire life,’ he said. ‘I've got a cat and a Jack Russell and it was bigger than both of those put together. I'd say it was about four foot.’ Yikes.
Some people are less convinced by the story, though, and believe the furry creature only looks so huge due to a trick of perspective, as Hackney Council beautifully demonstrated on Twitter with the help of a stuffed monkey.
Data scientist Oliver O’Brien from UCL also thought that it was unlikely to be 4ft and did some number crunching to come up with the slightly more believable measurement of 2ft.
The “giant rat” is two foot rather than the “four foot” claimed in the press. Perspective trick. Here’s my working: pic.twitter.com/DYGE3hPDSz— Oliver O'Brien (@oobr) March 11, 2016
Still, that’s several times larger than any rat we’d be happy to cross paths with on our way home at night. Sweet dreams, Hackneyites.