Rats are very capable and intelligent creatures.
Many years ago I constructed a bird-bath from about eight feet of conduit tubing and a plastic tray. I planted the structure in a cement base in the garden, about two feet from a hedge. To my surprise, I watched a rat climb up the tube, which I had imagined impossible, reach out and swing himself up and over onto the tray. His dismount was even more simple: he leaped into the hedge.
I suppose that jumping from an unsteady and swinging branch would be far more dangerous than landing on it.
Watching a lot of documentaries, I have come to the conclusion that as a species, we are not so hot when it comes to things physical. Our power to weight ratio isn't so wonderful.