Preble’s Meadow Jumping Mouse Monitoring on the U.S. Air Force Academy

PI: Rob Schorr

Rob is in his 10th year of mark-recapture sampling of the Preble’s meadow jumping mouse population along Monument Creek. This year population sampling was hampered by heavy rains, and raiding raccoons and bears. Rainfall in August made crossing Monument Creek treacherous, but flood waters subsided long enough to allow us to continue trapping. More troublesome was the regular trap disturbance from raccoons at two areas, and, for the first time since we began trapping, a bear showed an affinity for the bait. Both of these events likely hindered capture of some jumping mice.

At the request of the Air Force Academy we trapped several locations where habitat mitigation measures were being implemented. Because habitat improvements were recently initiated the shrub density and ground cover have not increased to a level that would sustain jumping mouse use. We will continue to sample in these areas to document when jumping mice return to the area. Trapping on the east side of northbound Interstate 25 and on the west side of southbound Interstate 25 demonstrated that jumping mice are utilizing the riparian habitats nearby. Unfortunately, efforts to trap jumping mice between the northbound and southbound lanes were unsuccessful.

In 2009, we hope to begin a systematic sampling of the riparian corridors of the Academy, producing a comprehensive map of jumping mouse presence, and all us to continue our efforts to model jumping mouse occupancy within riparian areas at the Academy.