Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, North American Mammals
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Tamias townsendii

Townsend's Chipmunk

Order: Rodentia
Family: Sciuridae

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Image of Tamias townsendii
Tamias townsendii - brighter inland form
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Conservation Status: Least Concern.

Clear-cut logging, which destroys habitat for some animals, offers good living conditions for Townsend's chipmunks. They find denning sites, cover, and food among the fallen, decaying logs and sprouting evergreens. In the 1830s, an explorer named Townsend collected a chipmunk he called a "pretty little fellow." Later it was given his name. Townsend's chipmunks favor fruits over seeds, though a variety of both are eaten, as are fungi, lichen, insects, and other invertebrates.

Sexual Dimorphism:
Females are significantly larger than males.

Average: 255 mm
Range: 230-280 mm

Range: 90-118 g


Bachman, J., 1839.  Description of several new species of American quadrupeds, p. 68.  Journal of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, Part 1, 8:57-74.


Mammal Species of the World

Mammalian Species, American Society of Mammalogists' species account

Distribution of Tamias townsendii

Image of Tamias townsendii
Tamias townsendii - coastal form, more muted
Click to enlarge. (45kb)

Image of Tamias townsendii
Click to enlarge. (118kb)