Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, North American Mammals
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Peromyscus merriami

Mesquite Deermouse

Order: Rodentia
Family: Cricetidae

Image of Peromyscus merriami
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Conservation Status: Least Concern.

Mesquite Deermice live in dense mesquite thickets known as bosques. Although mesquite is the dominant plant in bosques, other desert plants such as palo-verde, prickly pear and cholla cacti, and grasses, mix with the mesquite. The ground cover in this habitat is dense, and dead vegetation naturally covers the ground. Mesquite Deermice are common in this special habitat, but the habitat is localized and fragmented, and restricted to the Sonoran Desert. The Deermice forage at night for seeds, small fruits, and insects. They apparently breed year-round, but may breed most in late winter and early spring and less in the heat of summer. Females have been found carrying 2-4 embryos, indicating that their litters are small.

Also known as:
Merriam's Mouse, Mesquite Mouse

Sexual Dimorphism:

Average: 202 mm
Range: 185-225 mm

Range: 20-30 g


Mearns, E.A., 1896.  Preliminary diagnosis of new mammals from the Mexican border of the United States. Preprint of the Proceedings of the U.S. National Museum, 19:138.


Mammal Species of the World

Distribution of Peromyscus merriami