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

  Rodentia · Geomyidae · Cratogeomys castanops
   Smithsonian Institution
   Copyright Notice
   Privacy Notice
Cratogeomys castanops

Yellow-faced Pocket Gopher

Order: Rodentia
Family: Geomyidae

Image of Cratogeomys castanops
Cratogeomys castanops - yellowish variation, left; reddish variation, right
Click to enlarge. (60 kb)

Conservation Status: Least Concern.

The Yellow-faced Pocket Gopher feeds on starchy, tuberous roots of desert shrubs and on the roots and leaves of low-growing forbs. Like other pocket gophers, this species is considered an agricultural pest, doing extensive damage in orchards, gardens, potato patches, and other croplands. It digs long burrow systems, preferring deep sandy or silty soil. Burrow systems seem to contain only one nesting chamber, and except when breeding or raising young, these animals live alone. Yellow-faced Pocket Gophers live from less than one year (males), to a little more than one year (females). Females may reproduce within the same season as their birth and can have up to three litters in a season. Litter size averages 2-3, and ranges from 1-5.

Sexual Dimorphism:
Males are larger than females.

Range: 220-315 mm

Range: 385-410 g males; 225-290 g females


Baird, S.F., 1852.  Mammals.  In Exploration and survey of the valley of the Great Salt Lake of Utah, including reconnaissance of a new route through the Rocky Mountains (by H. Stansbury), p. 313.  Lippincott, Grambo and Co., Philadelphia, 2 vols.


Mammal Species of the World

Mammalian Species, American Society of Mammalogists' species account

Distribution of Cratogeomys castanops

Image of Cratogeomys castanops
Click to enlarge. (63kb)