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

Black-eared Deermouse

Order: Rodentia
Family: Cricetidae


Conservation Status: Least Concern.

The tiny Black-eared Deer Mouse has a patch of dark hair at the base of its ears and a very obvious line on its sides separating its white underparts from its brownish-gray upperparts. These help distinguish it from the widespread North American Deermouse, Peromyscus maniculatus. More significantly, the two species are genetically distinct.

Like other Deermice, the Black-eared Deer Mouse is nocturnal and feeds mostly on seeds. It has been found living in tall grass and climbing hollow tree trunks in conifer forests. Females are larger than males. Litters of two to four have been recorded. Young raised in captivity were dark all over until just before they reached sexual maturity. Their adult coats were darker in the summer than in winter.

Other small mammals found in the same habitats include shrews, cipmunks, woodrats, voles, and the Volcano Deermouse, Neotomodon alstoni.

Range: Total Length: 160-164 mm; Tail: 66-71 mm

Range: 17-28 g


Allen, J.A, & F.M. Chapman, 1897. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History, 9:203.


Mammal Species of the World

Distribution of Peromyscus melanotis