Map_thumbnail_large_font

Dipodomys venustus

Status_ne_offStatus_dd_offStatus_lc_onStatus_nt_offStatus_vu_offStatus_en_offStatus_cr_offStatus_ew_offStatus_ex_off

Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA MAMMALIA RODENTIA HETEROMYIDAE

Scientific Name: Dipodomys venustus
Species Authority: (Merriam, 1904)
Common Name/s:
English Narrow-faced Kangaroo Rat
Taxonomic Notes: Subspecies elephantinus formerly was recognized as a distinct species. Best et al. (1996) examined genetic and morphological variation in D. agilis, D. elephantinus, and D. venustus and concluded that D. agilis is not conspecific with elephantinus or venustus and that elephantinus should be regarded as a subspecies of D. venustus. This arrangement was adopted by Baker et al. (2003) and Patton (in Wilson and Reeder 2005).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor/s: Linzey, A.V. & NatureServe (Hammerson, G.)
Reviewer/s: Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Chanson, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
Justification:
Listed as Least Concern, although its extent of occurrence is very close to 20,000 km², its populations are relatively secure, there are no major threats to the species throughout its range, and it is unlikely to be declining fast enough to qualify for listing in a more threatened category.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: The species' range includes coastal mountains of west-central California in the United States; the species is historically known from San Mateo County southward to San Luis Obispo County, and east to San Benito County; from near sea level to 1,770 m asl (Best, 1992; Best et al., 1996).
Countries:
Native:
United States (California)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: For the species as a whole, the extent of occurrence, area of occupancy, number of subpopulations, and population size probably are relatively stable or are declining at a rate of less than 10% over 10 years or three generations. Subspecies venustus is declining in range and abundance. Recent extirpations have occurred (Caitlin Bean pers. comm., 2004). Subspecies elephantinus is probably stable. Subspecies sanctiluciae is unknown but probably relatively stable.

The three subspecies are known from roughly 50 locations (Caitlin Bean, unpublished map, 2004) that represent probably no more than three dozen distinct occurrences, and not all of these are extant. Subspecies venustus is currently known from just one extant population (Caitlin Bean pers. comm., 2004). The total adult population size is unknown but presumably exceeds 10,000.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The narrow-faced kangaroo rat occurs on maritime slopes covered with chaparral or a mixture of chaparral and oaks. It burrows in sandy, well-drained, deep soils. Subspecies venustus and sanctiluciae inhabit chaparral and chaparral mixed with oaks or digger pine, including sandy, well-drained, and deep soils that have been disturbed by human activity, typically on steep slopes. Shelters and nests are in underground burrows and burrows have been found in open, abandoned agricultural land; one individual may have multiple burrows. Subspecies elephantinus occurs on slopes, flats, and ridgetops with friable soil in mixed and chamise chaparral in oak/pine woodland zone, typically under dense vegetation (sympatric Dipodomys heermanni occupies adjacent open habitat) (Best, 1986). Young are born in underground burrows. The narrow-faced kangaroo rat produces one to two litters of two to four young each year (see Best, 1992). Diet includes seeds of annuals and some green vegetation. Caches seeds underground or in surface pits.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no major threats to the species throughout its range. Threats to the subspecies venustus include habitat loss/degradation and fragmentation as a result of urbanization, residential development, and sand mining.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The range of the species includes a few protected areas.
Citation: Linzey, A.V. & NatureServe (Hammerson, G.) 2008. Dipodomys venustus. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 16 April 2014.
Disclaimer: To make use of this information, please check the <Terms of Use>.
Feedback: If you see any errors or have any questions or suggestions on what is shown on this page, please fill in the feedback form so that we can correct or extend the information provided