Podomys floridanusFlorida mouse

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Geographic Range

The Florida deer mouse lives only in the state of Florida as the name implies. The mouse is found in the southern and central regions of Florida, extending to northern peninsular Florida.

Habitat

This mouse inhabits high, dry sandy ridges where black-jack oak, turkey oak, and scrub palmetto are abundant. (Booth 1971).

Physical Description

The color of the fur on the back ranges from a yellowish to light brown. The belly fur and underparts are white (Booth 1971). The ears are naked and relatively large. The feet are also exceptionally large for the size of the mouse. The hind feet average 26 mm. The feet have five pads where other deer mice have six. The body length of an adult Florida deer mouse ranges from 186mm to 221mm. The tail length ranges from 80mm to 100mm.

  • Range mass
    15 to 50 g
    0.53 to 1.76 oz
  • Average basal metabolic rate
    0.288 W
    AnAge

Reproduction

  • Key Reproductive Features
  • gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate)
  • sexual
  • Average number of offspring
    2.5
    AnAge
  • Average gestation period
    23 days
    AnAge

Lifespan/Longevity

  • Average lifespan
    Status: captivity
    7.4 years
    AnAge

Behavior

This mouse emits shrills and high pitched squeaks. When excited, Podomys floridanus thump the ground rapidly, producing a drumming noise with their front feet (Walker 1968). The mouse is primarily nocturnal resting in its nest during the day and venturing out at night to search for food. The Florida Mouse is almost exclusively a burrow dweller. It sometimes uses the burrow of the Gopher Tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus). The burrow consists of a platform composed of leaves and Spanish moss.

Communication and Perception

Food Habits

Diet includes seeds, nuts, berries, fruits, insects, and other invertebrates.

Economic Importance for Humans: Positive

The deer mice in general make very good laboratory test subjects. They are especially useful in physiological and genetic studies because they are clean, easily adjust to laboratory environment, are easily fed, and have a high reproductive rate

Conservation Status

Other Comments

Podomys floridanus is also called Peromyscus floridanus in older publications.

Contributors

Jonas Roddenberrry (author), Cocoa Beach High School, Penny Mcdonald (editor), Cocoa Beach High School.

Glossary

Nearctic

living in the Nearctic biogeographic province, the northern part of the New World. This includes Greenland, the Canadian Arctic islands, and all of the North American as far south as the highlands of central Mexico.

World Map

bilateral symmetry

having body symmetry such that the animal can be divided in one plane into two mirror-image halves. Animals with bilateral symmetry have dorsal and ventral sides, as well as anterior and posterior ends. Synapomorphy of the Bilateria.

chemical

uses smells or other chemicals to communicate

endothermic

animals that use metabolically generated heat to regulate body temperature independently of ambient temperature. Endothermy is a synapomorphy of the Mammalia, although it may have arisen in a (now extinct) synapsid ancestor; the fossil record does not distinguish these possibilities. Convergent in birds.

motile

having the capacity to move from one place to another.

native range

the area in which the animal is naturally found, the region in which it is endemic.

sexual

reproduction that includes combining the genetic contribution of two individuals, a male and a female

tactile

uses touch to communicate

tropical savanna and grassland

A terrestrial biome. Savannas are grasslands with scattered individual trees that do not form a closed canopy. Extensive savannas are found in parts of subtropical and tropical Africa and South America, and in Australia.

savanna

A grassland with scattered trees or scattered clumps of trees, a type of community intermediate between grassland and forest. See also Tropical savanna and grassland biome.

temperate grassland

A terrestrial biome found in temperate latitudes (>23.5° N or S latitude). Vegetation is made up mostly of grasses, the height and species diversity of which depend largely on the amount of moisture available. Fire and grazing are important in the long-term maintenance of grasslands.

References

Booth, E. 1972. How to know the mammals. Dubuque, Iowa: Wm. Brown Company.

Burt, W. 1980. A Field Guide to the Mammals. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company.

Walker, E., J. Paradiso. 1968. Mammals of the World, Second Edition. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press.