An Ode to Mumbai’s Spirit Animal: The Resilient Rat

Animals

An Ode to Mumbai’s Spirit Animal: The Resilient Rat

Illustration: Arati Gujar

S

ince the day the coppersmith barbet was anointed as Mumbai’s official bird, I’ve had one nagging question permanently stuck at the back of my mind: What would be the city’s official animal?

Could it be the leopard that keeps infiltrating our swanky housing societies and disrupting our idyllic urban lives? The stray dog, loved and cursed in equal measure? Or the crow, that’s taken it upon himself to be every Mumbaikar’s morning alarm? Come to think of it, if sheer numbers and strength of character are what count, the honour actually needs to go to the humble rat — all eight varieties of the species that call Mumbai home.

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