Common Name

Scientific Name

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Photo by Vladimir Dinets
Photo Copyright Vladimir Dinets

Ord's kangaroo rat, Dipodomys ordii, occurs in northern Mexico, much of the central and western United States, and a small area of southern Canada. The species is common in Utah, where it can be found state-wide at elevations less than 7000 feet. Ord's kangaroo rats prefer grassland, shrubland, and woodland habitats, usually occurring in areas with sandy soil and sparse vegetation. The species is nocturnal, and many individuals hibernate during the winter. Inactive periods are spent in underground burrows that are often dug near the base of grasses or shrubs.

Females give birth to an average of three young per litter, and may occasionally have two litters per year. Ord's kangaroo rats eat seeds, some green vegetation, and insects. When food is plentiful, it is stored in underground burrows for later use.


  • Biotics Database. 2005. Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, NatureServe, and the network of Natural Heritage Programs and Conservation Data Centers.

  • Burt, W. H. and R. P. Grossenheider. 1980. A field guide to the mammals. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston. 289 pp.