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Natural History of the Desert Woodrat, Neotoma lepida
Robert C. Stones and C. Lynn Hayward
The American Midland Naturalist
Vol. 80, No. 2 (Oct., 1968), pp. 458-476
Published by: The University of Notre Dame
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2423539
Page Count: 19
You can always find the topics here!Topics: Houses, Animal nesting, Female animals, Deserts, Leaves, Rats, Population density, Ecological life histories, Mammals, Mites
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A natural history study of the desert woodrat, Neotoma lepida lepida Thomas, was conducted from August, 1959, to June, 1960, near Jerico, Juab Co., Utah. Charted quadrats and a plotless quarter method revealed an average of 4.9 houses or 1.8 adult woodrats per acre in areas of few junipers to 8.5 houses or 3.1 adult woodrats per acre in a juniper-sagebrush community typical of the area. Spherical, conical, or oblong houses, depending on building location, appeared to be randomly dispersed. House details are described. An estimated 37% of the houses were occupied, each usually inhabited by one adult. Oval, circular, or gourd-shaped nests consisted mainly of shredded juniper bark. Food caches contained primarily juniper leaves and berries. Males were more active than females. Strict confinement to one house was not evident. Young woodrats were often found occupying previously unoccupied houses. Some young were parasitized by Cuterebra larvae.
The American Midland Naturalist © 1968 The University of Notre Dame