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There are several different groups of people on The Land who are collectively known as 'Rats, which is a shortened form of the various specific group names. All of these people are essentially homeless, but the specific names refer to the areas with which each group is most commonly associated. The most widespread of these groups are the street rats. Other groups include dock rats, hill rats, river rats, and wood rats. Sometimes the space between words is omitted, for example, "streetrats;" many individuals belonging to such groups also choose to capitalize these terms to use as their surnames. On the other hand, there are any number of 'Rats who choose some unrelated surname, or no surname at all.

While some attempt was made to include 'rats in the 905 census, it is certain that the vast majority of them were never counted. It's estimated that there are between 50,000 and 70,000 'rats on the Land, comprising at least 10% of the total world (human) population. It is frequently speculated that this represents a sharp increase since the Coming of the Order.

There is often a certain camaraderie between 'Rats, particularly within a given subset, but also between groups. Many 'Rats seem to think of each other as an extended family or fellowship, not unlike those people who chose the surname Protestant. It was this camaraderie that led Tiejo Streetrat to start the Allrat Fellowship in 912.

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