Meadow Jumping Mouse - Description

Description

The meadow jumping mouse can range in length, from 180 mm to 240 mm, with its tail taking credit for most of its length, usually about 108 mm to 165 mm. A distinct characteristic about this species is its enlarged hind feet, which can be, 28 to 35 mm long, and relatively short forelimbs. This gives it a Kangaroo rat like look to it, although its tail shows that it is not a Kangaroo rat because it is not bushy at the tip. The pelage of this creature is short, and with somewhat dense, coarse hair. The color of the pelage has a few variations, but a broad dorsal stripe is always present. This broad dorsal stripe is of a darker brown color, with black tips, giving it somewhat a grayish appearance to it. The sides are usually a lighter color, usually bright yellow to orange, and the under body is usually white, matching the color of its feet. These mice have eight mammary glands, four inguinal, two pectoral, and two abdominal. The male genitalia are inconspicuous except during mating season when the scrotal sac becomes enlarged, and more visible. The tail which again makes up most of this creature's body is bicolored, showing a darker color from above, and a lighter color below. It is lightly covered with hair, which gets longer as it approaches the tip, but does not get bushy like the Kangaroo rat. Its ears are very noticeable, and its whiskers are prominent. The head is small, and narrow, and it is considered to be relatively high crowned. The nose is short, yet it is pointy, and the eyes are relatively big. These mice also have a large infraorbital foramen. With the exception of the Aye-Aye, the meadow jumping mouse is the only mammal to have eighteen teeth with a dental formula of: 1/1, 0/0, 1/0, and 3/3. The upper jaw is short, and narrow. The incisors are longitudinally grooved, and its cheek teeth are small. Preceding the molars is a small peg-like premolar. As a whole the female jumping mouse is slightly larger, and heavier than the male, but their weight varies quite a bit depending on the season. Their weight during summer seasons can range from 11.15 grams to 24. 8 grams, with an average at about 16 to 19 grams. Just prior to hibernation, jumping mice can obtain a weight of 35 grams or larger.

Biological statistics (adult)
Length 180–240 mm (7.1–9.4 in)
Tail 108–165 mm (4.3–6.5 in)
Hind foot 28–35 mm (1.1–1.4 in)
Ear 12–19 mm (0.47–0.75 in)
Weight 11.5–24.8 g (0.41–0.87 oz)

up to 35 g (1.2 oz) or larger before hibernation

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