Content tagged with "Mammals"

River Otter

photo of river otter
Lontra canadensis
The playfulness and amazing agility of these streamlined mammals endear them to humans, but their voracious appetite makes these graceful, powerful swimmers a serious predator for crayfish and other small aquatic organisms. More

Southern Flying Squirrel

Image of southern flying squirrel
Glaucomys volans
Flying squirrels don’t actually fly, but they are expert hang gliders. Instead of running around on the ground, they climb to the top of a tall tree, launch into the air, glide downward to the bottom of another tree and repeat the process to get where they’re going. More

Squirrels (Eastern Gray Squirrel and Fox Squirrel)

Image of a gray squirrel
Eastern Gray (Sciurus carolinensis) Fox (Sciurus niger)
Among the members of the squirrel family living in Missouri, the eastern gray and fox squirrels are the most common. Their common names are descriptive of the general coat color-the grayish of one, and the "reddish fox" coloration of the other. More

Striped Skunk

Photograph of a striped skunk walking
Mephitis mephitis
Skunks are omnivorous mammals notorious for their ability to discharge an obnoxious scent when provoked, and the striped skunk is the most commonly encountered skunk in our state. More

Swamp Rabbit

Image of a swamp rabbit
Sylvilagus aquaticus
Larger and yellower than the eastern cottontail, the swamp rabbit is confined to swamps of Missouri’s Bootheel. As a wetland dweller, it’s a good swimmer and diver, but lack of swamp habitat is making this rabbit’s numbers decline. More

Thirteen-Lined Ground Squirrel

photo of a thirteen-lined ground squirrel
Spermophilus tridecemlineatus
This brownish ground squirrel has 13 alternating brown and whitish lines (sometimes partially broken into spots) running along its back and sides, creating rows of whitish spots within dark lines. It stands upright to survey its surroundings, diving down into its burrow when it senses danger. More

Voles (Meadow Mice)

Photo of two prairie voles in a nest made of dried grasses
Microtus ochrogaster, M. pinetorum, and M. pennsylvanicus
There are three species of voles in Missouri: prairie, meadow, and woodland voles. These mouselike rodents have rounded, blunt snouts, chisel-shaped front teeth, and short tails. More

White-Tailed Deer

Photo of white tailed buck
Odocoileus virginianus
In summer, white-tailed deer are reddish-brown to tan above; in winter, they are grayish. The throat and belly are white. This common Missouri deer is named for the bright white of its flaglike tail. More

Woodchuck (Groundhog)

Image of woodchuck (groundhog)
Marmota monax
One of the best-known wild mammals in Missouri, the woodchuck (or groundhog) is a rodent in the squirrel family. The name “woodchuck” is possibly derived from an Indian name for this species. More