Rodent ID from South Africa – help please
I am struggling to ID a few small mammals I saw in South Africa over the holidays. Does anyone have any theories on the following please?
This smallish rodent was at Dunedin Farm near to the Karoo National Park. I saw a couple of these – a few hundred metres apart – while spotlighting. Sandy soil, with scattered rocks and sparse vegetation. The HB was somewhere around 12 cm (I am guessing completely … but it was mouse than rat sized, but not tiny). My photos are terrible but I got the distinct impression when I saw the animal that the tail was considerably shorter than the head-body. The second picture below seems to disagree with that, though there may also be a bit of a perspective effect there that gives a misleading impression.
There are not all that many possibilities in the area from what I can gather. It seems a bit too brown and not grey enough for a Pouched Mouse or Multimammate Mouse. It might be a Short-tailed Gerbil (Desmodillus auricularis) though I don’t see the white patches behind the ears that seem quite obvious in images I have found elsewhere.
This animal was caught in Wakkerstroom (up at around 1800 metres and half way between Durban and Jo’Burg) in long wet grass at the edge of a gully. The HB was around 70mm, the unicoloured tail 50 mm. I think it might be a Pygmy Mouse?
This too was caught in Wakkerstroom (up at around 1800 metres and half way between Durban and Jo’Burg) in long wet grass at the edge of a gully. The HB was around 100mm, the tail 75 mm.
All help very gratefully appreciated! And I have other images of the species 2&3 so if something can help ID these animals let me know as I might have a pic of that body part
I have a few bats I will post tomorrow
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Rodents of Southern Africa: Notes on Their Identification, Distribution, Ecology and Taxonomy (Hardcover)
by G. De Graaff
* Gerrit de Graaff (1931–1996), South African zoologist after whom the De Graaff’s Soft-furred Mouse is named