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Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Mammals Around Las Vegas, Wildlife Around Las Vegas
Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Fairly dark-colored desert kangaroo rat

Description: Desert Kangaroo Rats (Dipodomys deserti) are among the largest kangaroo rats (head and body: to 6-1/2 inches; tail: to 8-1/2 inches; total length to about 15 inches). Body color usually is pale yellowish brown above, light below. Hind foot with 4 toes; toes clearly visible through the hairs. Tail dark with light stripes on the sides and a white tuft at the tip. This is the only kangaroo rat around Las Vegas with a white tuft on the tip of the tail, and it is the only kangaroo rat that regularly digs burrows in soft sand.

Taxonomy: Order: Rodentia, Family: Heteromyidae.

Diet: Feeds on dry seeds. Does not require free water.

Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Desert kangaroo rat burrows are large

Habitat: Found in areas with deep, loose sand (but not shifting sand dunes) in the Lower Sonoran (Creosote-Bursage Flats) and Upper Sonoran (Mojave Desert Scrub) life zones.

Range: Northwestern Nevada south into northern Mexico. In Nevada, this species is found in lower-elevation desert areas into the northwest corner of the state.

Comments: Nocturnal and solitary. When excited, kicks sand and drums the ground with its hind feet.

Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Desert kangaroo rat tracks and tail drags in the sand
Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Desert kangaroo rat hind-foot prints
Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Desert kangaroo rat large burrow
Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Desert kangaroo rats can move a lot of sand
Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti) Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti) Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti) Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti) Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Collapsed Desert kangaroo rat burrow; notice shallow depth
Aphids on fresh flowering stalks
more to come ...
Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Burrow and tail-drag marks in the blow sand
Desert Kangaroo Rat (Dipodomys deserti)
Burrow blocked up from inside and tail-drag marks in the sand

Note: All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 170630

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