The Northern Grasshopper Mouse (Onychomys leucogaster) occurs widely throughout west-central North America. Among its distinctive features are three that are quite unmurine: it is fiercely carnivorous; as a "werewolf mouse", it howls at the moon; and, its tail is surprisingly, well, curtailed. Here is the Northern Grasshopper Mouse that visited our backyard this past Spring:
Our peripatetic visitor has a surprise that extends well beyond its abbreviated tail; the eastern extent of its geographic range ends several hundred kilometers west of where I took its portrait. Welcome to the neighbourhood, pioneering murid.