Rarely seen Hydromys chrysogaster

This delightful Australian native aquatic creature lives in my nearby watercourse but is very shy and I rarely get a chance to view it for more than a fleeting second, let alone get a photograph of it but yesterday I got lucky and managed to get a few shots – albeit without a chance to change settings.

Once upon a time the Hydromys chrysogaster – otherwise known as the water rat – was quite plentiful but their numbers were severely reduced during the Great Depression when they were hunted for their pelts.  Since then, environmental factors have impacted on them and I’ve never seen or heard more than one at a time here although I have seen another further upstream.  It has webbed feet on its hind legs which distinguishes it dramatically from the introduced rodent – the European rat.