Muuuh Wildlife Photography

Muskrat - Ondatra zibethicus

The Muskrat is a medium sized rodent frequently seen in parks with lakes or rivers around Montreal. They build burrows with an underwater entrance along the banks of rivers, streams or lakes.

Common Names

  • Muskrat (en)
  • Rata almizclera (es)
  • Rat musqué (fr)
  • Bisamratte (de)


  • Rodentia
  • Cricetidae
  • Arvicolinae
  • Ondatra zibethicus

Where & When to Spot

Muskrats can be spotted all year long except winter in wetlands along ponds, lakes, rivers or streams. Best opportunities to observe Muskrats are during early spring in Rapids Park Lachine. With low vegetation it is easier to spot them.

Observation Logs

On every park visit, we maintain a log of species spotted and identified. If you maintain a similar list, please consider sharing it with Muuuh Wildlife Photography: Share Logs.

Park Angrignon, Montreal 1 0 1 0
Rapids Park Lachine 4 0 0 0

Times a species has been spotted, identified and logged while visiting this park. A species is reported only once / park visit. Only parks listed which we visit frequently all year long. Consult the page animal tracking about how we log observations in field.

How to Identify

When swimming, I can easily wrongly identified Muskrats as beavers. But once, having seen a beaver, I use the size as a distinguishable characteristics. Further, the shape of the tail and how the animal uses the tail to swim allows me to identify this animal. I rarely see beavers active at daylight, in opposition to Muskrats which I frequently observe during the day.


Muskrat (Ondatra zibethicus)

Muskrat (Ondatra zibethicus)

Rapids Park Lachine - 2017-04-15

NIKON D500; TAMRON SP AF 150-600mm F5-6.3 VC USD A011N; Focal Length 350mm; Exposure 1/500; Aperture f6.3; Iso 400;

Muskrat (Ondatra zibethicus)

Muskrat (Ondatra zibethicus)

Park Angrignon, Montreal - 2016-11-19

NIKON D7100; TAMRON SP AF 150-600mm F5-6.3 VC USD A011N; Focal Length 600mm; Exposure 1/1000; Aperture f6.3; Iso 1600;

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