A beach in New Zealand has been littered with hundreds of rats after a heavy downpour that caused the sea to swell.
The rats were seen on the Wesport shore following 24 hours of downpours.
Rumors have been going round that the rat may have been victims of a 1080 operation.
A 1080 operation is a situation whereby a substance is used in New Zealand to control populations of possums, rats, deer and rabbits.
1080 is in fact the name of the poisonous substance.
In fact, the DOC Western South Island operations director Mark Davies confirmed to Stuff there had been an aerial 1080 drop at Te Maruia in the Lewis Pass National Reserve recently.
However there are also reports of dead fish and birds washing up on the beach, which is not consistent with the way 1080 is understood to work.
The poison operation was also more than 140km away from Westport’s North Beach, where the rats washed up.
“However, until we know otherwise, we have to presume the rats have been poisoned by 1080 and take a cautionary approach,” he said.
Samples have been taken but results are expected to take between 48 and 72 hours.
Davies said about 600 rat carcasses had been collected along about 3km of beach, and DOC staff would check the beach after high tides for the next couple of days.