Title: Peromyscus Ecology: A Story of Two Similar yet Different Species.
Deer Mice (Genus Peromyscus) are essential components of forested ecosystems, playing key roles as prey for avian and mammalian predators, and foragers in their own right, consuming and storing tree seeds. Two common Deer Mouse species that co-occur in northern forests are the Woodland Deer Mouse (P. maniculatus gracilis) and the White-footed Deer Mouse (P. leucopus). Due to their similar morphology, ecologists assume these species are interchangeable in natural communities. This may not be the case, especially in terms of how well they survive northern winters. With the onset of climate change, differences between these mouse species could have important ramifications for small mammal communities and forest dynamics.