Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, North American Mammals
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Perognathus merriami

Merriam's Pocket Mouse

Order: Rodentia
Family: Heteromyidae

Image of Perognathus merriami
Perognathus merriami - indistinguishable visually from P. flavus; differentiated by territory
Click to enlarge. (59 kb)

Conservation Status: Least Concern.


Merriam's Pocket Mice are found in short-grass prairie, desert scrub, and open, arid brushland. They are most common where the vegetation is dense enough to provide them with seeds and some protection from predators, but not so dense that it inhibits their movements. Grazed pastures suit their needs well. Their silky fur is yellowish-orange with a slight blackish tinge on the back, and their bellies are white to pale buff. A dark stripe runs just behind the nose, and a pale ring encircles each eye. They are very similar in appearance to Silky Pocket Mice and Plains Pocket Mice. They are docile, readily tamed, and easily kept in captivity.

Sexual Dimorphism:
None

Length:
Average: 112 mm
Range: 95-121 mm

Weight:
Average: 8 g
Range: 5-9 g

References:

Allen, J.A., 1892.  Description of a new species of Perognathus from southeastern Texas, p. 45.  Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History, 4:45-46.

Links:

Mammal Species of the World

Mammalian Species, American Society of Mammalogists' species account

Distribution of Perognathus merriami

Image of Perognathus merriami
Click to enlarge. (28kb)