Date of Award

Fall 2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Steven D. Ford, (

Second Advisor

Herman Nonnenmacher (

Third Advisor

Kristopher Mijares (


Species richness and relative abundance (RA) of the small terrestrial mammals were accessed in 20 different unreclaimed old coal mined sites in Crawford and Cherokee counties, southeast Kansas in 2014. Lines of Victor™ wooden snap-traps were set in three habitat types in each area: grassy, brushy and forested during 3-days period in each of the four seasons.

Southeast Kansas was heavily surface-mined (strip-mined) between the 1930’s and the 1970’s and many of these sites were not reclaimed (restored to the appearance of its original landscape). This has resulted in many types of altered habitats in this region such as strip-pits (usually long, narrow lakes), and a diversity of vegetative communities such as grassy, brushy and forested habitats categorized in this study. A total of 12 different species were collected. These species belong to two orders: Rodentia and Soricomorpha. Order Rodentia had 10 species represented in this study. Prairie vole (Microtus ochrogaster), pine vole (Microtus pinetorum), house mouse (Mus musculus), Eastern woodrat (Neotoma floridana), white footed mouse (Peromyscus leucopus), deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus), fulvous harvest mouse (Reithrodontomys fulvescens), plains harvest mouse (Reithrodontomys montanus), hispid cotton rat (Sigmodon hispidus) and meadow jumping mouse (Zapus hudsonius). Order Soricomorpha was represented by two species: Elliot’s short-tailed shrew (Blarina hylophaga) and least shrew (Cryptotis parva). The richest habitat was grassy habitat where all twelve species (650 individuals) were collected followed by brushy with ten species (483), and finally forested habitat with eight species (219) collected.

The most collected species were the deer mouse, 494 individuals, 36.54% RA. The least collected species were the house mouse, the plains harvest mouse and the meadow jumping mouse with only seven individuals for each species and 0.5% RA.

Most sites presented high richness and number of specimens collected. Although some sites show low richness and specimens collected, there were no apparent reasons for such results.

Included in

Zoology Commons



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