Field Guide/Mammals/Plains Pocket Mouse

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Perognathus flavescens (Plains Pocket Mouse)
Family: Heteromyidae [1]
Size: These mice weigh from 0.15- 0.35 pounds (7- 16 grams). The length of the animals range from 4.3- 6.1 inches (110- 155mm) with the tail length being between 1.92- 3.5 inches (49 and 89mm). [2]
Description: The small mouse is distinguishable by visible, external, fur-lined cheek pouches that no other mouse in Minnesota has. Their fur color is generally a tan buff color with a mix of brown and black hair on its upper side and back and may have white spots on it's belly.[1]
Similar Species: The P. apache or silky pocket mouse is very similar to the plains pocket mouse and has been debated if it should be considered a sub-species of the pocket mouse or remain two different species. [2]

Range: Plains pocket mice are found in the North America Great Plains region, with a range from Mexico to Minnesota and the Dakotas.[2]
Habitat: The mouse lives in temperate, terrestrial habitats made of loose, sandy soil with moderate vegetation. They commonly build vertical burrows underneath bushes or other plants. The burrows are used for nesting as well as food storage. [2]
Diet: Granivore, mostly seeds and sometimes ants. They will also eat grains, oats, and different types of grasses. Water they drink comes from seeds.[2]
Activity: Nocturnal, but will be out during the day if there is an overcast.[2]

Reproduction: Produce 2-3 litters per year, with approximately 2-7 offspring per litter. They mate around April until late summer. Mice usually start mating at the age of 10-17 weeks.[2]
Lifespan: 1-2 years, sometimes longer.[2]
This is a pocket mouse but not a plains pocket mouse. This is a Pacific pocket mouse (Perognathus longimembris pacificus)

  1. a b Linzey, A.V.; Timm, R.; Alvarez-Castaneda, S.T.; Castro-Arellano, I.; Lacher, T. (2008), Perognathus Flavescens, http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/16634/0, retrieved (September 25, 2012) 
  2. a b c d e f g h Spencer, Victoria (1997), Perognathus Flavescens, plains pocket mouse, http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/accounts/Perognathus_flavescens/, retrieved (October 4, 2012)