Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, North American Mammals
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Neotoma macrotis

Big-eared Woodrat

Order: Rodentia
Family: Cricetidae


Conservation Status: Least Concern.

Like other woodrats, Big-eared Woodrats tend to be solitary and aggressive toward each other, except for mating pairs or females raising their young. Woodrats are nocturnal, and are preyed on by owls, foxes, coyotes, bobcats, weasels, and rattlesnakes. Their elaborate houses can give scientists a clue to the plants that grow - or used to grow - in their range, because the woodrats bring home uneaten plant matter and add it to their other treasures. Generation after generation urinates and defecates on parts of the structure. This acts as a preservative. If the nest is located where it is protected from the elements, for example, in a cave, plant remains can be preserved for many thousands of years.

Range: Head and Body: 150-230 mm; Tail: 75-240 mm

Range: 199-450 g


Thomas, O., 1893. Annals and Magazine of Natural History, ser. 6, 12:234.


Mammal Species of the World

Distribution of Neotoma macrotis