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Volume 72—1992

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New Records of Mammals from Washita County, Oklahoma

Bryon K. Clark* and Renn Tumlison**
Oklahoma Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit,
Department of Zoology, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma 74078.
Received: 1991 Nov 06; Revised: 1992 Jan 24

Present addresses: * Southeastern Oklahoma State University, Department of Biological Sciences, Station A Box 4096, Durant, Oklahoma 74701. ** Henderson State University, 1100 Henderson Street, Arkadelphia, AR 71923.
References Top of Page Table of Contents Home

Distributions of mammals of Oklahoma recently were summarized (1). This paper reports range extensions and new Washita County records of mammals. The mammals were collected and observed during 12 June 1986, 31 March – 2 April 1989, and 6–8 April 1990. Except where noted, all records of mammals are from the Marvin Klemme Range Research Station (Klemme Ranch), located 2.6 km N and 8.0 km W of Bessie in north central Washita County, Oklahoma. The Klemme Ranch was acquired by the Oklahoma Agricultural Experiment Station, Oklahoma State University, in 1989 and our preliminary observations represent the first known records of mammals for this site.

Small mammals were sampled in five habitats: 1) grazed upland prairie (1989: 148 trapnights with large Sherman live traps [7.6 8.9 22.9 cm] and 80 trapnights with Museum Special snap traps; 1990: 160 trapnights with Sherman traps); 2) ungrazed upland prairie (1989: 40 trapnights with Sherman traps; 1990: 100 trapnights with Sherman traps); 3) lowland riparian habitat (1989: 80 trapnights with Sherman traps and 80 trapnights with Museum Special traps; 1990: 80 trapnights with Sherman traps); 4) in or near buildings of the ranch (1989: 20 trapnights with Sherman traps, 10 trapnights with Hav-a-hart live traps [45.7 12.7 12.7 cm], 4 trapnights with mole traps; 1990: 20 trapnights with Sherman traps and 10 trapnights with Hav-a-hart traps); and 5) abandoned garden (1990: 80 trapnights with Sherman traps). All traps were baited with a mixture of rolled oats and peanut butter except for the mole traps.

One pine vole (Microtus pinetorum OKSU 12511) was obtained on 8 April 1990 in a riparian strip along an intermittent stream approximately 75 m N of the buildings of the ranch. Cottonwood (Populus deltoides) and elm (Ulmus sp.) were the dominant tree species, and the mulch layer was relatively sparse. This capture extends the western edge the pine vole's known range about 70 km from the nearest record in Caddo County, Oklahoma (1).

Three fulvous harvest mice (Reithrodontomys fulvescens) were trapped (one on 7 April and two on 8 April 1990). One animal was released and two were prepared as voucher specimens (OKSU 12501 and OKSU 12502). All individuals were caught in an abandoned garden that was contiguous to an intermittent stream bordered by cottonwood and elm trees. The site, approximately 300 m S of the capture location for M. pinetorum, had a lush growth of johnson grass (Sorghum halepense) and bromegrass (Bromus sp.), and a well-developed mulch layer. This site represents a range extension of about 65 km northwestward from the nearest reported location in southwestern Oklahoma in Caddo County, Oklahoma (1).

One prairie vole (Microtus ochrogaster OKSU 12500) was trapped on 7 April 1990 in an upland site that had not been grazed for about 20 years. Mixed-grass and short-grass species including buffalo grass (Buchloë dactyloides), sideoats, grama (Bouteloua curtipendula), blue grama (B. gracilis), little bluestem (Andropogon scoparius), isolated clumps of sand bluestem (A. hallii), and prickly pear cactus (Opuntia sp.) characterized this site. Nearest locality records of prairie voles include Texas County, Oklahoma (2) and Hansford County, Texas (3) to the northwest, Canadian County, Oklahoma (1) to the east, and Comanche County, Oklahoma (4) to the southeast. The Klemme Ranch is about 100 km west of the record of prairie voles in Canadian County and is near the leading edge of the southwestern range limits in Oklahoma when the locality in Texas County, Oklahoma or in Hansford County, Texas is

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connected with a straight line to the record in Comanche County, Oklahoma.

The following species were captured on the Klemme Ranch and represent the first records for Washita County (1): one eastern mole (Scalopus aquaticus) on 1 April 1989 in the vicinity of the farm dwellings; thirteen-lined ground squirrel (Spermophilus tridecemlineatus), three on 1–2 April 1989 and four on 7 April 1990, grazed upland prairie; hispid pocket mouse (Chaetodipus hispidus), 11 on 1–2 April 1989 and two on 7–8 April 1990, all in grazed upland prairie except for one in 1990 that was captured in ungrazed prairie; northern grasshopper mouse (Onychomys leucogaster), seven on 1–2 April 1989 and three on 7–8 April 1990, all in grazed upland prairie except for one in 1990 that was captured in ungrazed upland prairie; hispid cotton rat (Sigmodon hispidus), five on 7–8 April 1990 in abandoned garden; and eastern woodrat (Neotoma floridana), two on 1–2 April 1989 and two on 7–8 April 1990, all in or near farmstead buildings. The species identification for woodrats was based on external characteristics as all individuals were released after capture.

The following species were observed on roads approximately 20 km southwest of the Klemme Ranch near Burns Flat on 7 April 1990 and represent the first reported record of each species for Washita County, Oklahoma (1): two nine-banded armadillos (Dasypus novemcinctus); two black-tailed jackrabbits (Lepus californicus); one raccoon (Procyon lotor); and one bobcat (Felis rufus). Two additional Washita County records include an Ord's kangaroo rat (Dipodomys ordii) and a silky pocket mouse (Perognathus flavus), both captured and identified by R. Tumlison 8.0 km N and 3.2 km E of Corn, Oklahoma on 12 June 1986.


The Marvin Klemme Range Research Station is managed by the Department of Agronomy, Agricultural Experiment Station, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma. We thank R. L. Gillen, Department of Agronomy, Oklahoma State University, for permission to trap small mammals on the Klemme Ranch, and friends and associates who helped with the trapping. An earlier version of this paper was reviewed by B.S. Clark and D. M. Leslie, Jr. Voucher specimens are in the Oklahoma State University Museum, Stillwater, Oklahoma. Publication costs were provided by the Faculty Research Fund, Southeastern Oklahoma State University, Durant.


References Top of Page Table of Contents Home

1.   Caire, W., Tyler, J. D., Glass, B. P., and Mares M.A., Mammals of Oklahoma, Univ. Oklahoma Press, Norman, OK (1989), 567 pp.

2.   Reed, M. P., and Choate, J. R., Noteworthy Southwestern Records of the Prairie Vole. Southwest. Nat. 33, 495-496 (1988).

3.   Jones, J. K. Jr., Manning, R. W., Jones, C., and Hollander, R. P., Mammals of the Northern Texas Panhandle, Occas. Pap., The Museum, Texas Tech Univ. 126, 1-54 (1988).

4.   Choate, L. L., Natural History of a Relictual Population of the Prairie Vole, Microtus ochrogaster, in Southwestern Oklahoma, Occas. Pap., The Museum, Texas Tech Univ. 129, 1-20 (1989).