The findings are a part of an archeology project examining the movement of early humans throughout Southeast Asia and how their dispersal affected the environment. According to the team, human records in the area can be traced back to 46,000 years ago.
For thousands of years, humans co-existed with the rats and used them as a food source, as indicated by cut and burn marks on the bones. The mega-rats could grow as big as a small dog, weighing 5 kg (11 lbs) each.
However, the rats seemed to go extinct about a thousand years ago for indeterminate reasons. It is likely that the introduction of metal tools allowed humans to clear natural habitats faster than ever before, driving the rodents to extinction.