Bailey's Pocket Mouse
Body length: 3 - 4"
Diet: Seeds and green plants
During a study at Tonto National Monument, Bailey's pocket mouse was captured more often than any other nocturnal rodent. It occurs in every vegetation community throughout the Monument, and is far more abundant than other rodents in all areas except for heavily wooded riparian areas, where cactus mice predominate.
Pocket mice are related to kangaroo rats, and are also well-adapted to dry, desert conditions. They do not need to drink water. Through behavior (night activity and burrowing) and physiology (concentration of urine), pocket mice sustain themselves solely on the moisture they metabolize from their diet of seeds. Like kangaroo rats, they can carry food back to their dens in their fur-lined cheek pouches, where they cache it for future use.
Did You Know?
The first known written record of the cliff dwellings at Tonto National Monument dates from 1880. Archeologist Adolph Bandelier visited the dwellings in 1883, and said they were some of the best preserved he had ever seen. More...