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Remains of enormous extinct rat discovered in cave

The remains of a rat the size of a small dog have been found in a cave in East Timor.

The huge rodent, which died out about 2,000 years ago, was three times as big as its modern cousins and weighed more than 13lbs, about the same as a small dog.

Australian archaeologists from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) found the bones of the giant rat alongside 11 new species of rat, eight of which weighed more than 2lbs.

Dr Ken Aplin, who was part of the team that unearthed the remains, said that the find proved that rats dominated the East Timorese animal kingdom about five million years ago.

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