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  1. ITV Report

Warning as 'cat-sized' rat pictured in London garden

The rat is estimated to be between 16 and 18 inches. Credit: Splash.

A abnormally large rat has been spotted in north London today, and captured on camera as it stared through the back door of a home in Belsize Park.

Experts are warning the population of the super rodents are growing furiously. The super rat found today is estimated to be between 16 and 18 inches.

Sam Firth, who took the picture, said she could not believe how brazen the creature was.

It was bizarre, I was sat having a cup of tea when I spotted the rat staring back at me. I'm afraid to venture outside, the gigantic rodent had no fear.

– Sam Firth

The University of Huddersfield last year warned the so-called super rats were becoming immune to popular poisons used to kill the rodents.

Professional quality poisons can kill the furry beasts but these cannot be used outdoors without a special license as they can kill other wildlife.

Dr Dougie Clarke from the University of Huddersfield told ITV News the rise in super rats has become a "time bomb" of resistance building built up over several generations.

I think people should be concerned about these rats and these resistant rats because of public health concerns.

They carry disease and various other bacteria and viruses - and they also damage buildings and they also eat grains and storage and agriculture.

They cost billions of pounds of damage worldwide.

It's a sort time bomb of resistance building up over generations of rats.

– Dr Dougie Clarke, University of Huddersfield