Mephitis macroura 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Carnivora Mephitidae

Scientific Name: Mephitis macroura
Species Authority: Lichtenstein, 1832
Common Name(s):
English Hooded Skunk
French Moufette À Capuchon
Spanish Zorillo

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Cuarón, A.D., Reid, F. & Helgen, K.
Reviewer(s): Duckworth, J.W. (Small Carnivore Red List Authority) & Schipper, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
This species is listed as Least Concern as the species has a wide distribution range, is present in a variety of habitats and is common across its range (Hwang and Lariviere, 2001) and is tolerant to human activities. It is suspected that the species population is increasing in some regions.
Previously published Red List assessments:
1996 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: M. macroura occurs from the southern United States (southwestern Texas, southwestern New Mexico, and southeastern Arizona), throughout Mexico, into Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and northwest Costa Rica. (Hall, 1981; Janzen and Hallwachs, 1982; Reid, 1997; Rosatte, 1987).
Countries occurrence:
El Salvador; Guatemala; Honduras; Mexico; Nicaragua; United States
Upper elevation limit (metres): 2440
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Little is known of the population dynamics of hooded skunks (Rosatte, 1987). The species is common in Costa Rica and not uncommon in Arizona (Reid pers. comm.). The species is very abundant in Mexico (Hwang and Lariviere 2001). The species seems to be more common in human disturbed areas.
Current Population Trend: Increasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The hooded skunk is most common in the arid lowlands (Davis and Russell, 1954), but also occurs in deciduous or ponderosa forest, forest edges, pastures, rocky canyons, and riparian habitats (Baker, 1956; Findley et al., 1975; Janzen and Hallwachs, 1982). In Mexico, hooded skunks occupy home ranges of 2.8–5.0 km2 (Ceballos and Miranda, 1986). Typically, M. macroura occurs from sea level to 2,440 m (Hubbard, 1972), but it was also found at higher elevations in Mexico (Davis and Russell, 1954) and in Arizona (Hoffmeister, 1986). In Guerrero, Mexico, hooded skunks are widespread but scattered below 1,830 m (Davis and Lukens, 1958). The hooded skunk mainly consumes insects, fruits, small vertebrates, and bird eggs (Patton, 1974; Reid, 1997). This species seems to benefit from human distrurbed areas and can be abundant around human populations.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Hooded skunks are not threatened. In Mexico, they are very abundant and survive in human altered habitats such as cultivated fields, pastures, and suburban areas (Hwang and Larivière, 2001). However, its meat is desired in some areas (Davis, 1944) while other parts are used for some other uses in Guatemala and Mexico (Reid, 1997; Dalquest, 1953).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The species does not have any specific protection status in Central America (De la Rosa and Nocke, 2000).

Citation: Cuarón, A.D., Reid, F. & Helgen, K. 2008. Mephitis macroura. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T41634A10524490. . Downloaded on 26 June 2016.
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