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The Zone-tailed Ranch, Mohave County, Arizona
Mammals of the Zone-tailed Ranch, Mohave County, Arizona

The Zone-tail Ranch is a 320 acre (half of a section; one mile long and half a mile wide) piece of beautiful desert near the crest of the Aquarius Mountains, Arizona, at an elevation of about 5000 feet. It is located east of Kingman (east of US-93) and south of I-40.

The land is rocky canyon country with cliffs, seasonal streams, and perennial springs. The Zone-tail Ranch is just above the level of the cliffs where the land starts to flatten out, and includes one major mountain top and one major canyon. Vegetation is dominated by juniper with some pinyon, oak, cactus, yucca, and a diverse collection of shrubs and annual plants. It is transitional between the pinyon-juniper highland and the Sonoran Desert lowlands. Perennial vegetation probably covers no more than 20% of the ground.

We have a diversity of mammals at the ranch. We have seen javelina and mule deer, but these are hunted and so are shy. We see a lot of javelina sign in certain places, but only a few pigs. In the fall of 1996, we saw a large group of about 15 adult javelina and one juvenile, but in September 1997, we saw a group of six adults and about seven juveniles. I guess it was a good year. We also have lots of rabbits (cottontail and jack rabbits), ground squirrels (rock and antelope), and rats (woodrats, kangaroo rats, deer mice) that provide food for skunks, coyotes, foxes, and probably some cats.

The following is a list of species that might occur in the vicinity of the Zone-tailed Ranch. Species seen are marked with an asterisk (*). If you have an interest in Arizona mammals, send us a note.


Order Family Subfamily Species                       common name

      Sorex merriami                                 Merriam's shrew
      Sorex vagrans                                  vagrant shrew
      Notiosorex crawfordi                           desert (gray) shrew

      Macrotus waterhousii (californicus)            california leaf-nosed bat
      Myotis californicus                            california myotis
      Myotis ciliolabrum (M. subulatus, M. leibii)   western small-footed myotis
      Myotis evotis                                  long-eared myotis
      Myotis lucifugus                               little brown myotis
      Myotis occultus                                arizona myotis
      Myotis thysanodes                              fringed myotis
      Myotis volans                                  long-legged myotis
      Myotis velifer                                 cave myotis
      Myotis yumanensis                              yuma myotis
      Lasiurus blossevillii (L. borealus)            western red bat
      Lasiurus cinereus                              hoary bat
      Lasionycteris noctivagans                      silver-haired bat
      Pipistrellus hesperus                          western pipistrelle
      Eptesicus fuscus                               big brown bat
      Euderma maculatum                              spotted bat
      Euderma phyllote (Plecotus, Idionycteris)      allen's big-eared bat
      Corynorhinus (Plecotus) townsendii             townsend's big-eared bat
      Antrozous pallidus                             pallid bat
      Tadarida brasiliensis                          Brazilian free-tailed bat
      Nyctinomops (Tadarida) femorosaccus            pocketed free-tailed bat
      Nyctinomops macrotis (Tadarida molossa)        big free-tailed bat
      Eumops perotis                                 western mastiff bat

      Sylvilagus audubonii                         * desert cottontail
      Sylvilagus floridanus                          eastern cottontail
      Lepus californicus                           * black-tailed jack rabbit

      Spermophilus (Citellus) tereticaudus           round-tailed ground squirrel
      Spermophilus (Citellus) variegatus           * rock squirrel
      Ammospermophilus harrisi                     * yuma antelope squirrel
      Tamias (Eutamias) dorsalis                   * cliff chipmunk
      Thomomys bottae                              * valley pocket gopher
      Chaetodipus (Perognathus) penicillatus         desert pocket mouse
      Chaetodipus (Perognathus) intermedius        * rock pocket mouse
      Perognathus amplus                             arizona pocket mouse
      Perognathus flavus                             silky pocket mouse
      Dipodomys deserti                              desert kangaroo rat
      Dipodomys merriami                           * merriam's kangaroo rat
      Dipodomys ordii                                ord's kangaroo rat
      Reithrodontomys megalotis                      western harvest mouse
      Peromyscus boylii                            * brush mouse
      Peromyscus crinitus                          * canyon mouse
      Peromyscus eremicus                          * cactus mouse
      Peromyscus maniculatus                       * deer mouse
      Peromyscus truei                             * pinyon mouse
      Onychomys leucogaster                          northern grasshopper mouse
      Onychomys torridus                             southern grasshopper mouse
      Sigmodon hispidus                              hispid cotton rat
      Neotoma lepida                                 desert woodrat
      Neotoma albigula                             * whitethroat woodrat
      Neotoma stephensi                            * stephens woodrat
      Microtus mexicanus                             mexican vole
      Ondatra zibethicus                             muskrat
      Erethizon dorsatum                             common porcupine

      Canis latrans  coyote
      Vulpes velox (V. macrotus)                     swift or kit fox
      Urocyon cinereoargenteus                     * gray fox
      Bassariscus astutus                            ringtail
      Procyon lotor                                * raccoon
      Mustela frenata                                long-tailed weasel
      Lutra canadensis                               river otter
      Taxidea taxus                                  badger
      Spilogale gracilis (putorius)                * western spotted skunk
      Mephitis mephitis                              striped skunk
      Conepatus leuconotus                           hognose skunk
      Mephitus macroura                              hooded skunk
      Puma (Felis) concolor                        * mountain lion
      Lynx rufus                                     bobcat

      Equus caballus                               * wild horse

      Odocoileus hemionus                          * mule deer
      Antilocapra americana                          pronghorn
      Ovis canadensis                                desert bighorn sheep
      Bos taurus                                   * domestic cow
      Pecari tajacu                                * javelina
Note: All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 111224
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