• G. Govinda Raj


The chapter on rodents and their management is dealt in three sections, mainly to serve as practical material for the graduate and postgraduate students of Agricultural Entomology and Zoology from the point of pest management. Rodents being most important vertebrate pests cause crop damage at all stages of growth and development, 10–15% on an average. Besides damage, they are also instrumental in transmitting deadly zoonotic diseases to humans and their livestock. Section I deals with rodent characters, pest species, identification and distribution and data on rodent damage crop stage wise. Rodents belong to the class Mammalia, order Rodentia, which comprise of 4 families, 43 genera and 99 species; 14–20 species are of economic importance, and 103 species identified. They are universally distributed in all the agroclimatic and geographical regions of the country. Gerbils are distributed in dry agricultural fields, mole rats in irrigated fields, bamboo rat, wood and Rattus species are found in NEH region in rice and bamboo ecosystems. Squirrels are confined to forest ecosystems of Western Ghats. The Rattus species, a very predominant commensal rodent, has global distribution. Rodents are identified based on their variations in the head, body and tail characters. Crop damage due to rodents is depicted. Social behaviour, population dynamics and reproduction in rodents are well illustrated, and the annual productivity of rodent field population is shown in tables under Section II. Neophobia and bait shyness, behaviour of rodents and their implication in rodent pest management are discussed. The last Section III deals with rodent pest management aspects and includes physical, biological and chemical methods of management together with rodenticide evaluation methods. Most importantly, the extension technologies for the management of rodents in different cropping systems are shown in Table 26.10 for taking up control measures against rodents. Further, this chapter is illustrated with good rodent photographs and their burrows along with other known rodents from other geographical regions.


Rodent pest species Identification characters Population dynamics Reproduction Methods of rodent pest management and extension technologies 



The author wishes to record his gratefulness to the Project Directorate, AINP on Vertebrate Pest Management (ICAR), CAZRI, Jodhpur, and the Directorate of Research, University of Agricultural Sciences, GKVK, Bangalore, Karnataka, for providing an opportunity to work on rodents at Bangalore Centre.


  1. Govinda Raj G (1984) Studies on some aspects of reproductive biology of the female South Indian gerbil, Tatera Cuvieri (waterhouse), Ph.D. thesis Bangalore University, Karnataka, Bangalore–196pp.Google Scholar
  2. Govinda Raj G, Srihari K (2002) Breeding ecology of Rodent pest species of Karnataka, in Glimpes of Rodent Research in India, Technical Bulletin 10, 28–30, CAZRI Project Directorate (ICAR) AICRP on Rodent control, Jodhpur 342003, IndiaGoogle Scholar
  3. Govind Raj G, Naik M (2015) Extension technologies for the management of Rodent Pets in different cropping systems of Karnataka-Extension folder released during 1st, All India Network Project (AINP) on vertebrate Pest Management, CAZRI, 15–17 in October 2015, Jodhpur, IndiaGoogle Scholar
  4. Parshad VR, Singla N, Kocher DK, Kaur R (2007) The lesser Bandicoot Rat: Technical Bulletin 14, All India Network Project on Rodent control (ICAR), CAZRI, Jodhpur, 342003Google Scholar
  5. Pough H, Janis CM, Heiser JB (2012) Vertebrate life, 8th edn. Benjanim Cummings Pearson, BostonGoogle Scholar
  6. Pradhan MS, Talmale SS (2009) A checklist of valid Indian Rodent Taxa (Mammalia-Rodentia) Zoological Society of India, KolkataGoogle Scholar
  7. Prakash I (1971) Breeding season and litter size of Indian Desert Rodents: Zeitschrift fur Angewat Zoology 58:441–454Google Scholar
  8. Prakash I, Ghosh PK (1997) Book on Rodents in Indian Agriculture, vol 1, State of Art, Scientific Publishers, Jodhpur-342001Google Scholar
  9. Rajendran TP, Tripathi RS, Dutta BC, Bora DK, Mohan Rao AMK (2007) Rodent Pest Management in North East India, Technical Bulletin: 15, All India Network on Rodent Control (ICAR), CAZRI, Jodhpur-342003Google Scholar
  10. Shymalal B (2017) Book on bamboo flowering and Rodent borne diseases in NEH region Indi. LAP- Lambert Publishing, DeutschlandGoogle Scholar
  11. Singla N (2013) Recent trends in rodent Research in Punjab. All India Publishers, JodhpurGoogle Scholar
  12. Sridhara S (2006) Vertebrate Pests in Agriculture, The Indian Scenario. Jodhpur Scientific Publication, JodhpurGoogle Scholar
  13. Sridhara S, Rajendran TP (2009) Bamboo flowering and Rodent outbreaks. Scientific Publishers, JodhpurGoogle Scholar
  14. Sridhara S, Tripathi RS (2005) Distribution of rodents in Indian Agriculture: technical bulletin 13, 1–136, All India Network Project on Rodent Control (ICAR) CAZRI, Jodhpur, IndiaGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. Govinda Raj
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of EntomologyUniversity of Agricultural SciencesBangaloreIndia

Personalised recommendations