Overview

Distribution

Range Description

This species is found in the western United States; in eastern Oregon (except northeastern and southeastern corners), northwestern Nevada, and west side of Snake River in west-central Idaho (Hoffman et al., in Wilson and Reeder 1993).
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
It occurs mainly in high desert (sagebrush, shadscale, greasewood, western juniper), grasslands, pastures (Rickart, in Wilson and Ruff 1999); and also in river valley bottomland. Generally in well-drained soils, especially embankments. It is often around desert springs and irrigated fields. It makes extensive burrow systems. Young are born in a nest chamber in an underground burrow.

Main diet is herbaceous vegetation (grasses, forbs, and exotic annuals), and seeds; may also eat some shrub parts and animal matter. Will often feed on crops. May climb bushes while foraging. Emerges from dormancy in late winter or early spring (males before females) but returns to dormancy during May-July, when grasses dry out. May have separate period of activity in fall. Most active in the early morning.

Systems
  • Terrestrial
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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2008

Assessor/s
Yensen, E. & NatureServe (Hammerson, G.)

Reviewer/s
Amori, G., Koprowski, J. & Roth, L. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority)

Contributor/s

Justification
Listed as Least Concern because it is relatively widespread, adaptable, has a presumed large population, and is not declining fast enough to qualify for listing in a more threatened category.

History
  • 1996
    Lower Risk/least concern
    (Baillie and Groombridge 1996)
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Population

Population
The current population trend of this species is unknown.

Population Trend
Unknown
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Threats

Major Threats
Main threats appear to be agricultural conversion and rangeland degradation although these are not major threats throughout the species' range. It causes agricultural damage in some areas and has been subject of control programs.
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
This species is not known to occur in any protected areas.
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