Cover image for The Smithsonian book of North American mammals
The Smithsonian book of North American mammals
Wilson, Don E.
Publication Information:
Washington [D.C.] : Smithsonian Institution Press in association with the American Society of Mammalogists, [1999]

Physical Description:
xxv, 750 pages : illustrations (some color), maps ; 29 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
QL715 .S55 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Reference material
QL715 .S55 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize
QL715 .S55 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area-Oversize
QL715 .S55 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Reference material
QL715 .S55 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



America north of Mexico is home to more than 400 species of mammals. In this comprehensive volume, more than 450 photographs and accessibly written descriptions survey the rich and varied world of North American mammals - from familiar species such as bear, deer, seals, squirrels, an rabbits to those that are more secretive or obscure, including shrews, bats, and voles.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Let's talk micro to macro about mammals. Geist is one of the world's leading authorities on hoofed animals, particularly deer, and the moose is the largest deer. Moose have been studied (and hunted) for centuries in both the Old World, where they were known as elk, and the New. How such a large (up to 1,400 pounds) herbivorous animal finds enough to eat, avoids its predators, and interacts with its fellow moose are investigated. Moose evolution, along with a discussion of why moose have such large noses, leads to discussions of the yearly cycle in moose feeding and habitat use, and how moose use their habitat and behaviors to defend themselves. The chapter on moose courtship and reproduction will be particularly interesting to many readers, as it is during the autumn rut that moose are at their most impressive--and often at their most easily viewed. The final section on the interactions of moose and people not only covers the usual discussion of wildlife management but contains an amusing section on hand-reared moose. An excellent buy for all libraries and a must for libraries in areas with resident moose. America north of Mexico is home to more than 400 species of mammals, and a comprehensive book on all of these species that reflects current research has been needed for some time. Wilson is the senior editor of the indispensable taxonomic survey Mammal Species of the World, and the present volume was produced in the same manner, as a collaborative effort with the American Society of Mammalogists. The book is presented taxonomically from the more primitive opossum to the more advanced rabbits and includes an account of every native mammal known to occur north of the Mexican border, including offshore islands and waters. A short writeup on each order and family precedes the more lengthy species accounts. Each account is written by an expert with extensive field experience on that species and is followed by a short digest of size, identification (description), synonyms of the scientific name, other common names, status in the wild, a list of subspecies, and a list of references. Virtually every species is illustrated with a black and white or (more often) color photo and a range map. This work not only provides an excellent overview of our native mammals but an indispensable reference to the scientific literature, making it a primary source for reference librarians for years to come. --Nancy Bent

Library Journal Review

With the help of over 200 experts, the editors of Mammal Species of the World have created a beautifully illustrated and well-written work. Designed to be the first comprehensive source on North American mammals, it covers every species known in the United States, Canada, and the surrounding islands and waters. The book is arranged by evolutionary relationships, with each species account including information on identification guidelines, scientific and common names, geographic distribution, behavior, diet, habitat, reproduction, growth and development, longevity, predation, population status, and impact of human activity. Each entry also includes a distribution map and photograph, usually in color, and a brief list of references providing additional information. Because the indexes to scientific and common names only reference species information that appears outside its own entry, readers will have to use the table of contents to find the main entry. Written for readers of all levels, this book is an authoritative source. Highly recommended for public and academic libraries.√ĄTeresa Berry, Univ. of Tennessee Lib., Knoxville (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. ix
Acknowledgmentsp. xiii
Contributorsp. xvii
Plan of the Bookp. xxiii
Order Didelphimorphia
Family Didelphidae: Opossumsp. 3
Order Xenarthra
Family Dasypodidae: Armadillosp. 9
Order Insectivora
Shrews and Moles
Family Soricidae: Shrewsp. 15
Family Talpidae: Molesp. 56
Order Chiroptera
Family Mormoopidae: Ghost-faced Batsp. 71
Family Phyllostomidae: Leaf-nosed Batsp. 73
Family Vespertilionidae: Vesper Batsp. 82
Family Molossidae: Free-tailed Batsp. 127
Order Carnivora
Family Canidae: Dogsp. 139
Family Ursidae: Bearsp. 157
Family Mustelidae: Weasels, Badgers, and Otters
Family Mephitidae: Skunksp. 183
Family Odobenidae: Walrusp. 193
Family Otariidae: Fur Seals and Sea Lionsp. 195
Family Phocidae: Earless Sealsp. 203
Family Procyonidae: Ringtail, Raccoon, and Coatip. 219
Family Felidae: Catsp. 226
Order Cetacea
Whales and Dolphins
Family Balaenidae: Right Whalesp. 241
Family Balaenopteridae: Rorqualsp. 246
Family Eschrichtiidae: Gray Whalep. 259
Family Delphinidae: Dolphinsp. 262
Family Monodontidae: Beluga and Narwhalp. 291
Family Phocoenidae: Porpoisesp. 295
Family Physeteridae: Sperm Whalesp. 299
Family Ziphiidae: Beaked Whalesp. 304
Order Sirenia
Family Trichechidae: Manateesp. 319
Order Artiodactyla
Even-toed Hoofed Mammals
Family Tayassuidae: Peccariesp. 325
Family Cervidae: Deerp. 327
Family Antilocapridae: Pronghornp. 339
Family Bovidae: Bison, Sheep, and Goatsp. 342
Order Rodentia
Family Aplodontidae: Mountain Beaverp. 355
Family Sciuridae: Squirrelsp. 357
Family Geomyidae: Pocket Gophersp. 466
Family Heteromyidae: Pocket Mice, Kangaroo Rats, and Kangaroo Micep. 494
Family Castoridae: Beaverp. 548
Family Muridae: Rats, Mice, Voles, and Lemmingsp. 553
Family Dipodidae: Jumping Micep. 665
Family Erithizontidae: Porcupinesp. 671
Order Lagomorpha
Pikas, Rabbits, and Hares
Family Ochotonidae: Pikasp. 677
Family Leporidae: Rabbits and Haresp. 681
Appendix Common and Scientific Names of Plants Citedp. 707
Glossaryp. 711
Literature Citedp. 715
Photography Creditsp. 737
Index to Scientific Namesp. 743
Index to Common Namesp. 747