Biology ETDs

Publication Date



The geographic variation of the pocket gopher Thomomys bottae in the Rio Grande Valley of New Mexico and Conejos County, Colorado were studied. The pocket gophers were collected and prepared as standard museum skins and skulls. Various dimensions of the pocket gophers are measured, treated statistically, and plotted as Dice squares. Four groups of geographically related and like-sized animals were noted. These groups could be associated with four previously described subspecies of T. bottae. It was possible to observe a correlation between the mean size of each sample of gophers and the soil type in which they were found. The hypothesis that sexual dimorphism in size is most apparent in deep friable soils was not substantiated. On the basis of color alone the samples could be placed in the same groups derived by using size alone. Pelage color could be related in a general way to the color of the soil inhabited by these animals. This correlation was not exact.



Document Type


Degree Name


Level of Degree


Department Name

UNM Biology Department

First Committee Member (Chair)

James Smith Findley

Second Committee Member

Loren David Potter

Third Committee Member

William Jacob Koster

Included in

Biology Commons