Do crows eat rats?

Yes, crows do eat rats. Crows are omnivores, and they are famous for being hunters and scavengers. They eat a variety of food, ranging from plants to meat. Rats contain meat, and they are usually running around from time to time. With crows being opportunistic birds, they would dive and consider a rat for their meal.

Besides that fact above, there are many exciting things about rats and crows that you are yet to know.

What makes rat suitable prey for crows?

Are they safe to eat?

Let’s tackle it one by one.

Do crows attack rats?

Yes, crows do attack rats. It is because they see anything as potential food, especially small animals.

As stated above, crows are opportunistic eaters and hunters. They don’t only eat almost anything.

Moreover, crows attack any living animals they think they can kill.

Rats in the eyes of a crow is a small animal that can be their food. Further, rats look like they are incapable of harming them should they attack.

Thus, any crow would immediately take on a rat upon sight.

Do crows kill and hunt rats?

While crows have that intent to attack rats, they don’t search or hunt for one.

Crows are territorial. They tend to search for food only within the area that they consider their own.

Thus, they don’t reach long miles only to hunting and searching for food.

As far as their area lies, that’s where they will look for opportunities. If they don’t see any rats lurking around, they won’t search, kill, or hunt for it.

But if they do see one, their usual reaction is to lower themselves and hunt it down.

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Rats as prey to crows

Compared to other prey, crow tends to favor rodents more, and rats and mice belong to this category.

But what makes the two different from each other?

Let’s first take a look.

Difference between mice and rats

With only a glance, it would be hard to tell how a rat differs from a mouse.

Even so, rats and mice have characteristics that set them apart from the other. Below are the fundamental differences between the two:

Rats are more massive than mice, and this difference is noticeable as both animals grow.

Mice have a more massive pair of ears compared to rats.

Both animals can be white, brown, or gray, but rats are the only ones that can come in black.

Rats have hairless tails, while mice have hairy tails.

Rats as Prey to Crows

Mice are easy prey for crows because of their size, but it does not mean that rats are safe because they are better in size.

While both animals differ in size, both rats and mice are nothing but a potential food in a crow’s perspective.

What makes a rat prey to crows is that they roam in roads and farms while crows are searching for food.

But where do rats live, you may wonder?

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Where do rats live?

Rats live almost all over the world. There are rats in rice fields and farms. There are also rats in near swamps and even in forests.

Brown rats are among the most common rats, living on boats and even in houses and roads. There are also rats living in sewers and passageways.

Thus, with rats everywhere, it’s a no-brainer why crows tend to hunt one every time.

Like all other rodents, Rats don’t live and roam out in the open, at least not all the time. They spend most of their time hiding in their burrows or places safe for them to stay.

Even so, they still need to come out and look for food to survive. That’s when rats face the danger brought by predators, and that danger includes the crows.

How do crows hunt rats?

Crows are fascinating creatures. Unlike other predators, they use their intelligence in hunting.

The reason is that they don’t have the killing tools like that of the birds of prey. Thus, they will hunt rats using their intelligence.

Once a crow sees a rat, it will come down and approach. Crows don’t have long and sharp claws to grab the rat and snatch it up.

What it will do is that it will peck the rat, targeting the base of its tail.

The crow will do this until the rat slows down and weakens.

In most cases, the rats are healthy enough to run or try to move towards the crow.

A crow is careful enough to jump back to dodge what seems to be an attack from rats.

Once a rat becomes weak enough, the crow will peck on it until it dies.

If the crow kills the rat, it will have two options. The crow will either eat it on sight or bring it somewhere safer.

The latter works if the crow hunted the rat in a dangerous area, such as roads where vehicles move fast. It will also do the same if potential competitions are lurking nearby.

Do you want to know if crows eat frogs? Read here.

Rats or Crows: Which is faster?

In case a rat will try to escape from the crow, the blackbird has the upper hand.

The fastest speed a rat can get is up to 8 mph, while its predator, which is the crow, can dive up to 70 mph.

For crows and rats, a chase won’t usually happen since, after a few pecks, a rat will be weak enough to run its fastest.

How do rats defend themselves from predators?

Rats don’t have the killing tools themselves to fight off predators.

Even so, they usually use and show their teeth to try and fend off predators.

Their teeth aren’t enough to kill, but it can still create damage, especially to small predators.

However, in the case of crows, fighting back would be a futile way, primarily if the crow hunts with another as pairs.

What other animals eat rats?

Aside from crows, rats have quite a lot of predators to watch out and avoid.

Rats are preys by nature, and for animals, they will always be moving food that should be in their tummies.

While there are many other animals out there that eat rats, these are the most famous:


The first in the list are the birds of prey or also known as raptor birds. Raptor birds like eagles, hawks, and owls can swoop down and kill rats in a click.

Non-raptor birds like crows can also eat all kinds of rodents if they find them. The others are herons and blue jays.


For reptiles, the giant lizards are famous for taking on rats. Even so, the snakes come first in the line of reptiles when it comes to rats. It is because rats serve as their primary source of food.


Mammals also take an interest in rats. From the list, house cats are the most famous. Even so, most house cats don’t eat mice.

Cats will play and kill one. On the other side, their feral counterparts are the ones with the intent of killing for food.

Aside from the house and wild cats, other family members such as lions, tigers, and jaguars can also eat rats.

These animals are more prominent, which means they need bigger meals than rats. Even so, they won’t say no to one if they catch it.

Canines can also eat rats. Domestic dogs won’t dare eat one, but wolves, foxes, and coyotes will.


  • Crows do eat rats. Crows eat a variety of food, from plants to animals. Rats consist of meat and are available almost everywhere. Thus, they become potential food for crows.
  • Crows would attack rats as long as they see one around. Even so, they won’t search outside their area looking and hunting for one.
  • Rats and mice may differ in size, but they are nothing but potential meals in a crow’s perspective.
  • Rats become prey to crows when they roam outside in an open area where crows can see them.
  • Rats live everywhere, and while they are usually hiding, they come out to search for food. That’s when crows get to find them.
  • When it comes to speed, crows are faster than rats. Even so, a chase isn’t necessary since a few pecks is enough to weaken a rat.
  • Rats defend themselves from predators through their teeth. But, this isn’t something that will work on crows.
  • Aside from crows, a lot of animals would also consider eating rats. Some of them even depend on rats as their primary food source.

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