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Temporal range: Late Eocene–Recent[1]
Jaculus orientalis Stuffed specimen 2.jpg
Jaculus orientalis
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Rodentia
Suborder: Myomorpha
Superfamily: Dipodoidea
Family: Dipodidae
Fischer de Waldheim, 1817


The Dipodidae are a family of small to medium-sized rodents living in the northern hemisphere. The family has over 50 species in 16 genera.

They include the jerboas, jumping mice, and birch mice. Different species are found in grassland, deserts, and forests. They are all capable of saltation, which is jumping from a bipedal stance. This feature is most highly evolved in the desert-dwelling jerboas. Their movement resembles that of kangaroos more than that of true mice.

Most species are nocturnal, and the eyes and ears are noticeably larger than usual in proportion to the body.

References[change | change source]

  1. Qian Li; Yan-Xin Gong; Yuan-Qing Wang (2017). "New dipodid rodents from the Late Eocene of Erden Obo (Nei Mongol, China)". Historical Biology: An International Journal of Paleobiology. 29 (5): 692–703. doi:10.1080/08912963.2016.1232406. S2CID 132602246.