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Science

MAMMALS

MMNS MAMMALOGY COLLECTION

CONTACT Katelin Cross (Katelin.Cross@mmns.ms.gov)

 

mmns Chipmunks, Tamias striatus

Chipmunks, Tamias striatus

 

The Mississippi Mammal Collection began in 1936 as part of the statewide plant and animal survey under the direction of Ms. Fannye Cook.

During the Works Progress Administration survey period (1936-1941), over 5,900 mammal specimens were collected, prepared, and cataloged into the fledgling museum's permanent collections. Collections made during this period comprise 72% of the current Mammal Collection.

Field collection of mammals declined after the initial survey.

However, through collection and salvage of specimens by Museum Staff, deposition of specimens from research projects, and donations by the public, there are currently over 8,200 specimens cataloged into the Mammal Collection. Most specimens are from Mississippi representing 79 of the 82 counties.

Additionally, there are specimens from 13 other states and Canada.

A total of 74 species are represented in the Mammal Collection. New World rats, mice, and voles in the family Cricetidae comprise 48% of the collection. Other numerous species include shrews in the family Soricidae, Old World rats and mice in the family Muridae, and squirrels in the family Sciuridae. Other orders are less well-represented in the Mammal Collection.

 Most of the specimens are traditional study skins with accompanying skulls and some complete skeletons; a smaller, fluid-preserved collection is also maintained.

Tissue is being collected from more recently prepared specimens and cataloged into the MMNS Genetic collection.

mmns Golden Mouse, Ochrotomys nuttalli

Golden Mouse, Ochrotomys nuttalli

 

 

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