A kangaroo rat is a cute little mammal from the, Heteromyidae family, who lives in the western hemisphere of the USA. The native kangaroo rat wasn’t endangered until the 1950’s. They mainly live in California. The Kangaroo Rat is a nocturnal mammal who hide in their borrows during the heat of the day and plugs up their borrows with loose soil as they get ready for the night, where they thrive (3). They have a diet that feeds off of seeds and grains with an average lifespan of 9.8 years. They are about 6 to 7.8 in and have a tail that is 7-8.5 inches long (1). They weigh about 3 to 6.3 oz (1). The kangaroo rat gets its name from having kangaroo like features like hopping with their back legs (2). They hop or jump at speeds of 10 feet per second (1). They have a long tail that is used for balanced as they travel in bipedal motion (1). They have adapted to the hot climates of the desert. They can survive off the moisture of seeds and live without drinking water. (1) Their life spans are about one to two very short years (1). They can range in many habitats as they can live in areas where they are low rainfalls and humidity and high summer temperature and evaporation rates(5). Not only can they strive on in low water areas they can be found in stony soils, clays, gravel and rocky grounds which are soils that they prefer.(5)
Why is the Kangaroo Rat Endangered?
Unfortunately, they are an endangered species due to urban and agricultural development that has caused a massive habitat breakup (1). The population of the Kangaroo rat has plummeted in the 20th century with over 95 percent of the former range of this species has been lost due to a mixture of overgrazing, mining operations, cultivation and the introduction of exotic plants.(3) For the giant kangaroo rat, the rate of their habitat drop is gently sloping and level of piedmont plains and areas of their supporting saltbush, perennial grasses; habitat is now dominated by introduced annuals with many shrubs in the areas.(7) Habitat agriculture has slowed down but the urban and industrial developments for example, petroleum and mineral exploration and extraction of new energy and water conveyance facilities destroys the habitat for kangaroo rat. Other expansions needs like transportation infrastructures reduce the species also as their habitat degradation of the kangaroo rat lack appropriate habitat management. (7)
Why the Kangaroo Rat worth saving.
If you are about helping the ecosystem in the desert than the Kangaroo rat is...