'Giant Rat' Caught And Killed By Grandad

A 'giant rat' has been caught and killed by a man in the North East of England.

Grandad Brian Watson killed the large rodent with a piece of wood near Consett, County Durham.

It was first spotted by the boyfriend of Mr Watson's granddaughter, while he was out cutting grass on a tractor.

In an interview with Sky Tyne and Wear , Mr Watson said: "I heard him shouting there was a large rat.

"I came running round the corner. I managed to grab some wood on the way."

"It wasn't very fast. I managed to kill it there and then.

"I've never seen a rat as big in my life before."

One reason why it was so big and slow is that it may have been pregnant.

"It was that big... I think it was due to drop young ones," said Mr Watson.

Afterwards, he tried to pick up the creature with a paddle - but it was so heavy the paddle broke.

It was left where it was killed for several days, but when word spread of the find Mr Watson decided to destroy the rodent in a fire.

According to some observers the animal was a coypu , which are also known as river rats.

::Read more on this story on Sky Tyne and Wear

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