White-Footed Mouse

White-Footed Mouse
White-Footed Mouse
W. Perry Conway/Corbis

This common nocturnal mouse is often seen climbing in trees, using its long tail for balance.

It and the similar-looking deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus) share many of the same habitats, but the white-footed mouse tends to be found in slightly warmer, drier areas.

It eats many types of insects, fruit, nuts, and seeds. When food is abundant, the mouse may cache it in cavities or bury it close to the nest.

Nests are built out of grass, feathers, bark, and other materials.

Although in captivity it may live several years, in the wild there is usually a complete replacement of the population each year.

Most die in spring and early summer, perhaps because of greater predation, typically by larger mammals, birds, and snakes.

Animal Facts

Name: White-Footed Mouse (Peromyscus leucopus)

Family: Muridae (Rats and Mice)

Range: Southern Canada, central and eastern United States

Habitat: Forest and woodland

Diet: Seeds, berries, nuts, insects, grains, fruits, and fungi

Head and Body Length: 3.5 to 4 inches (9 to 11 cm)

Tail Length: 2.4 to 4 inches (6 to 10 cm)

Weight: 0.3 to 1 ounce (10 to 30 g)

Life Cycle: Mating spring to fall; gestation 22 to 23 days, usually four to five young born; two to four litters per year

Description: Pale to reddish-brown coat; white underparts; large eyes; rounded ears; round body; furred heels; long tail

Conservation Status: Common

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