Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, North American Mammals
Search the Archive

  Rodentia · Geomyidae · Geomys personatus
   Smithsonian Institution
   Copyright Notice
   Privacy Notice
Geomys personatus

Texas Pocket Gopher

Order: Rodentia
Family: Geomyidae

Image of Geomys personatus
Click to enlarge. (82 kb)

Conservation Status: Least Concern.

Only soils with low percentages of silt, clay, and gravel will do for the Texas Pocket Gopher, so many of its populations are isolated from one another. The species occurs in southern Texas and extreme northeastern Mexico, burrowing in deep, sandy soils and only infrequently emerging aboveground. It forages on plant root systems, and is capable of pulling some plants through the soil and into its burrow. While in the burrow, Texas Pocket Gophers keep any entrance to the surface plugged with soil; this closed-door policy not only helps to keep out unwanted guests, it also helps to maintain a suitable subterranean environment. Variation in size is one notable trait of the species, probably a result of population isolation.

Also known as:
South Texas Pocket Gopher, Carrizo Springs Pocket Gopher, Del Rio Pocket Gopher, Nueces Pocket Gopher, Padre Island Pocket Gopher, Rio Grande Pocket Gopher, Seaside Pocket Gopher

Sexual Dimorphism:
Males are larger than females.

Average: 270 mm
Range: 216-360 mm

Range: 165-400 g


True, F.W., 1889.  Description of Geomys personatus and Dipodomys compactus, two new species of rodents from Padre Island, Texas, p. 159.  Proceedings of theU.S. National Museum, 11:159-160.


Mammal Species of the World

Mammalian Species, American Society of Mammalogists' species account

Distribution of Geomys personatus

Image of Geomys personatus
Click to enlarge. (384kb)