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The Mammals of Texas - Online Edition

Table of Contents



Texas Mammals

Diversity of Land Mammals
Geographic Distribution of Land Mammals
Critical Species
Conservation Strategies
Key to the Major Groups (Orders) of Mammals in Texas

Order Didelphimorphia (opossum and allies)

Family Didelphidae (opossums)

Virginia Opossum, Didelphis virginiana

Order Insectivora (shrews and moles)

Key to the Insectivores of Texas

Family Soricidae (shrews)

Southern Short-tailed Shrew, Blarina carolinensis
Elliot’s Short-tailed Shrew, Blarina hylophaga
Least Shrew, Cryptotis parva
Desert Shrew, Notiosorex crawfordi

Family Talpidae (moles)

Eastern Mole, Scalopus aquaticus

Order Chiroptera (bats)

Key to the Bats of Texas

Family Mormoopidae (mormoopid bats)

Ghost-faced Bat, Mormoops megalophylla

Family Phyllostomidae (leaf-nosed bats)

Mexican Long-nosed Bat, Leptonycteris nivalis
Mexican Long-tongued Bat, Choeronycteris mexicana
Hairy-legged Vampire, Diphylla ecaudata

Family Vespertilionidae (vespertilionid bats)

Southeastern Myotis, Myotis austroriparius
California Myotis, Myotis californicus
Western Small-footed Myotis, Myotis ciliolabrum
Little Brown Myotis, Myotis lucifugus
Northern Myotis, Myotis septentrionalis
Fringed Myotis, Myotis thysanodes
Cave Myotis, Myotis velifer
Long-legged Myotis, Myotis volans
Yuma Myotis, Myotis yumanensis
Silver-haired Bat, Lasionycteris noctivagans
Western Pipistrelle, Pipistrellus hesperus
Eastern Pipistrelle, Pipistrellus subflavus
Big Brown Bat, Eptesicus fuscus
Western Red Bat, Lasiurus blossevillii
Eastern Red Bat, Lasiurus borealis
Hoary Bat, Lasiurus cinereus
Southern Yellow Bat, Lasiurus ega
Northern Yellow Bat, Lasiurus intermedius
Seminole Bat, Lasiurus seminolus
Evening Bat, Nycticeius humeralis
Spotted Bat, Euderma maculatum
Rafinesque’s Big-eared Bat, Plecotus rafinesquii
Townsend’s Big-eared Bat, Plecotus townsendii
Pallid Bat, Antrozous pallidus

Family Molossidae (free-tailed bats)

Brazilian Free-tailed Bat, Tadarida brasiliensis
Pocketed Free-tailed Bat, Nyctinomops femorosacca
Big Free-tailed Bat, Nyctinomops macrotis
Western Mastiff Bat, Eumops perotis


Order Xenarthra (armadillos, sloths, and allies)

Family Dasypodidae (armadillos)

Nine-banded Armadillo, Dasypus novemcinctus

Order Lagomorpha (hares and rabbits)

Key to the Hares and Rabbits of Texas

Family Leporidae (hares and rabbits)

Swamp Rabbit, Sylvilagus aquaticus
Desert Cottontail, Sylvilagus audubonii
Eastern Cottontail, Sylvilagus floridanus
Black-tailed Jackrabbit, Lepus californicus

Order Rodentia (rodents)

Key to the Rodents of Texas

Family Sciuridae (squirrels and allies)

Gray-footed Chipmunk, Tamias canipes
Texas Antelope Squirrel, Ammospermophilus interpres
Mexican Ground Squirrel, Spermophilus mexicanus
Spotted Ground Squirrel, Spermophilus spilosoma
Thirteen-lined Ground Squirrel, Spermophilus tridecemlineatus
Rock Squirrel, Spermophilus variegatus
Black-tailed Prairie Dog, Cynomys ludovicianus
Eastern Gray Squirrel, Sciurus carolinensis
Eastern Fox Squirrel, Sciurus niger
Eastern Flying Squirrel, Glaucomys volans

Family Geomyidae (pocket gophers)

Botta’s Pocket Gopher, Thomomys bottae
Desert Pocket Gopher, Geomys arenarius
Attwater’s Pocket Gopher, Geomys attwateri
Baird’s Pocket Gopher, Geomys breviceps
Plains Pocket Gopher, Geomys bursarius
Jones’ Pocket Gopher, Geomys knoxjonesi
Texas Pocket Gopher, Geomys personatus
Llano Pocket Gopher, Geomys texensis
Yellow-faced Pocket Gopher, Cratogeomys castanops

Family Heteromyidae (pocket mice and kangaroo rats)

Plains Pocket Mouse, Perognathus flavescens
Silky Pocket Mouse, Perognathus flavus
Merriam’s Pocket Mouse, Perognathus merriami
Hispid Pocket Mouse, Chaetodipus hispidus
Rock Pocket Mouse, Chaetodipus intermedius
Nelson’s Pocket Mouse, Chaetodipus nelsoni
Desert Pocket Mouse, Chaetodipus penicillatus
Gulf Coast Kangaroo Rat, Dipodomys compactus
Texas Kangaroo Rat, Dipodomys elator
Merriam’s Kangaroo Rat, Dipodomys merriami
Ord’s Kangaroo Rat, Dipodomys ordii
Banner-tailed Kangaroo Rat, Dipodomys spectabilis
Mexican Spiny Pocket Mouse, Liomys irroratus

Family Castoridae (beavers)

American Beaver, Castor canadensis

Family Muridae (mice and rats)

Coues’ Rice Rat, Oryzomys couesi
Marsh Rice Rat, Oryzomys palustris
Fulvous Harvest Mouse, Reithrodontomys fulvescens
Eastern Harvest Mouse, Reithrodontomys humulis
Western Harvest Mouse, Reithrodontomys megalotis
Plains Harvest Mouse, Reithrodontomys montanus
Texas Mouse, Peromyscus attwateri
Brush Mouse, Peromyscus boylii
Cactus Mouse, Peromyscus eremicus
Cotton Mouse, Peromyscus gossypinus
White-footed Mouse, Peromyscus leucopus
Deer Mouse, Peromyscus maniculatus
Northern Rock Mouse, Peromyscus nasutus
White-ankled Mouse, Peromyscus pectoralis
Piņon Mouse, Peromyscus truei
Golden Mouse, Ochrotomys nuttalli
Northern Pygmy Mouse, Baiomys taylori
Mearns’ Grasshopper Mouse, Onychomys arenicola
Northern Grasshopper Mouse, Onychomys leucogaster
Tawny-bellied Cotton Rat, Sigmodon fulviventer
Hispid Cotton Rat, Sigmodon hispidus
Yellow-nosed Cotton Rat, Sigmodon ochrognathus
White-throated Woodrat, Neotoma albigula
Eastern Woodrat, Neotoma floridana
Mexican Woodrat, Neotoma mexicana
Southern Plains Woodrat, Neotoma micropus
Norway Rat, Rattus norvegicus
Roof Rat, Rattus rattus
House Mouse, Mus musculus
Mexican Vole, Microtus mexicanus
Prairie Vole, Microtus ochrogaster
Woodland Vole, Microtus pinetorum
Common Muskrat, Ondatra zibethicus

Family Erethizontidae (New World porcupines)

Porcupine, Erethizon dorsatum

Family Myocastoridae (myocastorids)

Nutria, Myocastor coypus

Order Carnivora (carnivores)

Key to the Carnivores of Texas

Family Canidae (canids)

Coyote, Canis latrans
Gray Wolf, Canis lupus
Red Wolf, Canis rufus
Swift or Kit Fox, Vulpes velox
Red Fox, Vulpes vulpes
Common Gray Fox, Urocyon cinereoargenteus

Family Ursidae (bears)

Black Bear, Ursus americanus
Grizzly or Brown Bear, Ursus arctos

Family Procyonidae (procyonids)

Ringtail, Bassariscus astutus
Common Raccoon, Procyon lotor
White-nosed Coati, Nasua narica

Family Mustelidae (mustelids)

Long-tailed Weasel, Mustela frenata
Black-footed Ferret, Mustela nigripes
Mink, Mustela vison
American Badger, Taxidea taxus
Western Spotted Skunk, Spilogale gracilis
Eastern Spotted Skunk, Spilogale putorius
Hooded Skunk, Mephitis macroura
Striped Skunk, Mephitis mephitis
Eastern Hog-nosed Skunk, Conepatus leuconotus
Common Hog-nosed Skunk, Conepatus mesoleucus
River Otter, Lutra canadensis

Family Felidae (cats)

Mountain Lion, Felis concolor
Ocelot, Felis pardalis
Margay, Felis wiedii
Jaguarundi, Felis yagouaroundi
Jaguar, Panthera onca
Bobcat, Lynx rufus

Order Pinnipedia (seals, walruses, and allies)

Family Phocidae (seals)

Caribbean Monk Seal, Monachus tropicalis

Order Artiodactyla (even-toed ungulates)

Key to the Even-toed Ungulates of Texas

Family Suidae (pigs)

Feral Pig, Sus scrofa

Family Dicotylidae (peccaries)

Collared Peccary, Tayassu tajacu

Family Cervidae (cervids)

Axis Deer, Cervus axis
Fallow Deer, Cervus dama
Wapiti or Elk, Cervus elaphus
Sika Deer, Cervus nippon
Mule Deer, Odocoileus hemionus
White-tailed Deer, Odocoileus virginianus

Family Antilocapridae (pronghorn)

Pronghorn, Antilocapra americana

Family Bovidae (bovids)

Nilgai, Boselaphus tragocamelus
Bison, Bos bison
Mountain Sheep, Ovis canadensis
Barbary Sheep, Ammotragus lervia
Blackbuck, Antilope cervicapra

Order Sirenia (manatee and allies)

Family Trichechidae (manatees)

West Indian Manatee, Trichechus manatus

Order Cetacea (whales, porpoises, and dolphins)

Key to the Whales and Dolphins of the Texas Coast

Family Balaenidae (right whales)

Northern Right Whale, Eubalaena glacialis

Family Balaenopteridae (rorquals or baleen whales)

Minke Whale, Balaenoptera acutorostrata
Bryde’s Whale, Balaenoptera edeni
Blue Whale, Balaenoptera musculus
Fin Whale, Balaenoptera physalus
Humpback Whale, Megaptera novaeangliae

Family Physeteridae (sperm whales)

Sperm Whale, Physeter macrocephalus
Pygmy Sperm Whale, Kogia breviceps
Dwarf Sperm Whale, Kogia simus

Family Ziphiidae (beaked whales)

Blainville’s Beaked Whale, Mesoplodon densirostris
Gervais’ Beaked Whale, Mesoplodon europaeus
Cuvier’s Beaked Whale, Ziphius cavirostris

Family Delphinidae (toothed whales and dolphins)

Killer Whale, Orcinus orca
False Killer Whale, Pseudorca crassidens
Pygmy Killer Whale, Feresa attenuata
Short-finned Pilot Whale, Globicephala macrorhynchus
Melon-headed Whale, Peponocephala electra
Rough-toothed Dolphin, Steno bredanensis
Common Dolphin, Delphinus delphis
Risso’s Dolphin, Grampus griseus
Bottlenose Dolphin, Tursiops truncatus
Pantropical Spotted Dolphin, Stenella attenuata
Clymene Dolphin, Stenella clymene
Striped Dolphin, Stenella coeruleoalba
Atlantic Spotted Dolphin, Stenella frontalis
Spinner Dolphin, Stenella longirostris

Appendix I. The Measurement System

Appendix II. Observing and Collecting Mammals

Appendix III. Selected References on Mammals from Texas and Adjoining States

Appendix IV. Scientific Names

Appendix V. Standard Measurements of Study Specimens

Appendix VI. Basis for Distribution of Species