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Rodents: Rodentia

Physical Characteristics, Habitat, Diet, Behavior And Reproduction, Rodents And PeopleGEOGRAPHIC RANGE, CONSERVATION STATUS

Rodents are found in all parts of the world, including the Arctic tundra, desert, and oceanic islands. About 70 percent of all rodents are rats and mice, and these animals are found on every continent.

The IUCN lists 669 species of rodents under varying degrees of threat and endangerment (facing varying risks of extinction in the wild) as of 2004. There are 32 species that are listed as Extinct (died out). Loss of habitats and the introduction of species are the two main reasons for the loss of populations.



Clutton-Brock, Juliet, and Don E. Wilson, eds. Smithsonian Handbooks: Mammals. New York: Dorling Kindersley Publishing, 2002.

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Macdonald, David, ed. The Encyclopedia of Mammals. New York: Facts on File Publications, 1984.

Nowak, Ronald M. Walker's Mammals of the World, 5th ed. Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1991.

Nowak, Ronald M. "Order Rodentia." Walker's Mammals of the World 5.1 Online. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press: 1997. http://www.press.jhu.edu/books/walkers_mammals_of_the_world/rodentia/rodentia.html (accessed on July 8, 2004).


Adams, Jonathan. "A Nose for Trouble (trained rats)." Newsweek International (January 12, 2004): 42.

Dickson-Ramos, Holly. "The World's Largest Rodent." Faces: People, Places, and Culture (January 2004): 36.

Marchand, Peter J. "A Squirrel's Glide to a Long Life." Natural History 110, no. 8 (October 2001): 18.

Ostfeld, Richard S. "Little Loggers Make a Big Difference: The Tastes of Two Small Rodents—the Meadow Vole and the White-Footed Mouse— Can Determine What Trees Grow in a Forest." Natural History (May 2002): 64.

Travis, John. "Mining the Mouse: A Rodent's DNA Sheds Light on the Human Genome." Science News (February 22, 2003): 122.

"World's Largest Rodent Risks Extinction." United Press International (September 20, 2002): 1008263 .

Web sites:

Myers, P. "Order Rodentia (Rodents)." Animal Diversity Web. http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Rodentia.html (accessed on July 8, 2004).

Davis, William B., and David J. Schmidly. "Order: Rodentia." The Mammals of Texas—Online Edition. http://www.nsrl.ttu.edu/tmot1/ordroden.htm (accessed on July 8, 2004).

Lockwood, Burleigh. "Order: Rodentia." The Chaffee Zoo. http://www.chaffeezoo.org/animals/rodentia.html (accessed on July 8, 2004).

"Introduction to the Rodentia." University of California Berkeley, Museum of Paleontology. http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/mammal/rodentia/rodentia.html (accessed on July 8, 2004).

"Rat and Mouse FAQs." The Rat & Mice Club of America. http://www.rmca.org/Resources/faqs.htm (accessed on July 8, 2004).

Additional topics

Animal Life ResourceMammals