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The Info List - Western Spotted Skunk


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The western spotted skunk (Spilogale gracilis) is a spotted skunk of the west of North America

Contents

1 Description 2 Distribution and habitat 3 Behavior and biology 4 Taxonomy and etymology 5 Subspecies 6 References 7 External links

Description[edit] With a total length of 35–45 cm (14–18 in), the western spotted skunk is smaller than the striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis). Males, which weigh 336 to 734 g (11.9 to 25.9 oz), are significantly heavier than females, at 227 to 482 g (8.0 to 17.0 oz), but only about 6% longer, on average. The adult is boldly striped black and creamy white, with three longitudinal stripes on each side of the front part of the body, and three vertical stripes on the hind-parts. One pair of longitudinal stripes runs either side of the spine, with the second pair running over the shoulders, and extending forward onto the face. The third pair is lower over the shoulders, and curves downward at the middle of the body to form the first pair of vertical stripes. Behind this, the second pair of vertical stripes rise from the knees to the rump, while the final stripes are often little more than spots.[3] The ears are short and rounded, while the face is marked with a white spot between the eyes, and a white patch below each ear. The animal has a conspicuously large, long-haired tail, measuring 10 to 16 cm (3.9 to 6.3 in). The hair on the tail is mostly black, but is white at the tip, and sometimes also on the upper surface. The claws on the fore-feet are longer, and more curved, than those on the hind feet.[3] As with other related species, western spotted skunks possess a pair of large musk glands that open just inside the anus, and which can spray their contents through muscular action. The musk is similar to that of striped skunks, but contains 2-phenylethanethiol as an additional component, and lacks some of the compounds produced by the other species. These differences are said to give western spotted skunk musk a more pungent odor, but not to spread as widely as that of striped skunks.[3] Distribution and habitat[edit]

Skeleton of Spilogale gracilis.

The western spotted skunk is found throughout the western United States, northern Mexico, and southwestern British Columbia. Their habitat is mixed woodlands, open areas, and farmlands. Behavior and biology[edit] Western spotted skunks are nocturnal omnivores, feeding on insects, small vertebrates, such as mice and lizards, and berries. Common insects eaten include beetles and caterpillars.[4] Golden eagles are among their few predators.[5] They spend the day in dens, and are usually solitary, although sometimes two or three females will share a single burrow.[3] When threatened, western spotted skunks display threat behavior, stamping their fore-feet before raising their hind parts in the air and showing their conspicuous warning coloration. While they can spray by standing on their forelegs and raising their hindlegs and tail in the air, they more commonly do so with all four feet on the ground, bending their body around so that both their head and their tail face the attacker.[3][6] Western spotted skunks typically breed in September, although both sexes remain fertile for several months thereafter if they fail to breed early.[7] After fertilisation, the embryo develops to the blastocyst stage, but then becomes dormant for several months before implanting in the uterine wall around April. Including this period of delayed implantation, gestation lasts 230 to 250 days,[8] with the litter of two to five young being born in May.[7] At birth, the young are blind and almost hairless, weighing around 11 g (0.39 oz).[9] Western spotted skunks have lived for almost ten years in captivity.[10] Taxonomy and etymology[edit] The western spotted skunk was first described by Clinton Hart Merriam in 1890;[11] its specific name, gracilis, is derived from the Latin for "slender".[3] Although it was thought for years to be conspecific with the eastern spotted skunk (S. putorius), the presence of delayed implantation in the western spotted skunk clearly sets it apart.[12] Subspecies[edit] Seven subspecies are generally recognized:[1]

S. g. amphialus Dickey, 1929 - Channel Islands spotted skunk (Channel Islands of California) S. g. gracilis Merriam, 1890 - from south-eastern Washington to the extreme west of Oklahoma S. g. latifrons Merriam, 1890 - southwestern British Columbia to western Oregon S. g. leucoparia Merriam, 1890 - southern Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas, and northern Mexico S. g. lucasana Merriam, 1890 - southern Baja California S. g. martirensis Elliot, 1903 - northern and central Baja California S. g. phenax Merriam, 1890 - California

References[edit]

^ a b Wozencraft, W.C. (2005). "Order Carnivora". In Wilson, D.E.; Reeder, D.M. Mammal Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. p. 623. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494.  ^ Cuarón, A.D.; Reid, F. & Helgen, K. (2008). "Spilogale gracilis". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2008. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 27 January 2009.  ^ a b c d e f Verts, B.J.; Carraway, L.N. & Kinlaw, A. (2001). "Spilogale gracilis". Mammalian Species: Number 674: pp. 1–10. doi:10.1644/1545-1410(2001)674<0001:SG>2.0.CO;2.  ^ Baker, R.H. & Baker, M.W. (1975). "Montane habitat used by the spotted skunk (Spilogale putorius) in Mexico". Journal of Mammalogy. 56 (3): 671–673. doi:10.2307/1379480.  ^ von Bloeker, J.C. (1937). "Mammal remains from detritus of raptorial birds in California". Journal of Mammalogy. 18 (3): 360–361. doi:10.2307/1374214.  ^ Crooks, K.R. & Van Vuren, D. (1995). "Resource utilization by two insular endemic mammalian carnivores, the island fox and island spotted skunk". Oecologia. 104 (3): 301–307. doi:10.1007/BF00328365.  ^ a b Mead, R.A. (1968). "Reproduction in western forms of the spotted skunk (genus Spilogale)". Journal of Mammalogy. 49 (3): 373–390. doi:10.2307/1378196.  ^ Foreman, K.R. & Mead, R.A. (1973). "Duration of post-implantation in a western subspecies of the spotted skunk (Spilogale putorius)". Journal of Mammalogy. 54 (2): 521–523. doi:10.2307/1379146.  ^ Constantine, D.G. (1968). "Gestation period in the spotted skunk". Journal of Mammalogy. 42 (3): 421–422. doi:10.2307/1377064.  ^ Egoscue, H.J.; Bittmein, J.G. & Petrovich, J.A. (1970). "Some fecundity and longevity records for captive small mammals". Journal of Mammalogy. 51 (3): 622–623. doi:10.2307/1378407.  ^ ITIS Report. "ITIS Standard Report: Spilogale gracilis". Retrieved December 8, 2007.  ^ Smithsonian: National Museum of Natural History. "North American Mammals: Spilogale gracilis". Retrieved December 8, 2007. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Spilogale gracilis at Wikimedia Commons Data related to Spilogale at Wikispecies

v t e

Extant species of family Mephitidae

Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Mammalia Order: Carnivora Suborder: Caniformia

Conepatus

Western hog-nosed skunk (Conepatus mesoleucus) Eastern hog-nosed skunk (Conepatus leuconotus) Striped hog-nosed skunk (Conepatus semistriatus) Molina's hog-nosed skunk (Conepatus chinga) Humboldt's hog-nosed sskunk (Conepatus humboldtii)

Mydaus

Javan stink badger (Mydaus javanensis) Palawan stink badger (Mydaus marchei)

Mephitis

Striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis) Hooded skunk (Mephitis macroura)

Spilogale

Western spotted skunk (Spilogale gracilis) Eastern spotted skunk (Spilogale putorius) Pygmy spotted skunk (Spilogale pygmaea)

Category

v t e

Extant Carnivora species

Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Mammalia Infraclass: Eutheria Superorder: Laurasiatheria

Suborder Feliformia

Nandiniidae

Nandinia

African palm civet (N. binotata)

Herpestidae (Mongooses)

Atilax

Marsh mongoose (A. paludinosus)

Bdeogale

Bushy-tailed mongoose (B. crassicauda) Jackson's mongoose (B. jacksoni) Black-footed mongoose (B. nigripes)

Crossarchus

Alexander's kusimanse (C. alexandri) Angolan kusimanse (C. ansorgei) Common kusimanse (C. obscurus) Flat-headed kusimanse (C. platycephalus)

Cynictis

Yellow mongoose (C. penicillata)

Dologale

Pousargues's mongoose (D. dybowskii)

Galerella

Angolan slender mongoose (G. flavescens) Black mongoose (G. nigrata) Somalian slender mongoose (G. ochracea) Cape gray mongoose (G. pulverulenta) Slender mongoose (G. sanguinea)

Helogale

Ethiopian dwarf mongoose (H. hirtula) Common dwarf mongoose (H. parvula)

Herpestes

Short-tailed mongoose (H. brachyurus) Indian gray mongoose (H. edwardsii) Indian brown mongoose (H. fuscus) Egyptian mongoose (H. ichneumon) Small Asian mongoose (H. javanicus) Long-nosed mongoose (H. naso) Collared mongoose (H. semitorquatus) Ruddy mongoose (H. smithii) Crab-eating mongoose (H. urva) Stripe-necked mongoose (H. vitticollis)

Ichneumia

White-tailed mongoose (I. albicauda)

Liberiictus

Liberian mongoose (L. kuhni)

Mungos

Gambian mongoose (M. gambianus) Banded mongoose (M. mungo)

Paracynictis

Selous' mongoose (P. selousi)

Rhynchogale

Meller's mongoose (R. melleri)

Suricata

Meerkat (S. suricatta)

Hyaenidae (Hyenas)

Crocuta

Spotted hyena (C. crocuta)

Hyaena

Brown hyena (H. brunnea) Striped hyena (H. hyaena)

Proteles

Aardwolf (P. cristatus)

Felidae

Large family listed below

Viverridae

Large family listed below

Eupleridae

Small family listed below

Family Felidae

Felinae

Acinonyx

Cheetah (A. jubatus)

Caracal

Caracal (C. caracal) African golden cat (C. aurata)

Catopuma

Bay cat (C. badia) Asian golden cat (C. temminckii)

Felis

European wildcat (F. silvestris) African wildcat (F. lybica) Jungle cat (F. chaus) Black-footed cat (F. nigripes) Sand cat (F. margarita) Chinese mountain cat (F. bieti) Domestic cat (F. catus)

Leopardus

Ocelot (L. pardalis) Margay (L. wiedii) Pampas cat (L. colocola) Geoffroy's cat (L. geoffroyi) Kodkod (L. guigna) Andean mountain cat (L. jacobita) Oncilla (L. tigrinus) Southern tigrina (L. guttulus)

Leptailurus

Serval (L. serval)

Lynx

Canadian lynx (L. canadensis) Eurasian lynx (L. lynx) Iberian lynx (L. pardinus) Bobcat (L. rufus)

Otocolobus

Pallas's cat (O. manul)

Pardofelis

Marbled cat (P. marmorata)

Prionailurus

Fishing cat (P. viverrinus) Leopard cat (P. bengalensis) Sundaland leopard cat (P. javanensis) Flat-headed cat (P. planiceps) Rusty-spotted cat (P. rubiginosus)

Puma

Cougar (P. concolor)

Herpailurus

Jaguarundi (H. yagouaroundi)

Pantherinae

Panthera

Lion (P. leo) Jaguar (P. onca) Leopard (P. pardus) Tiger (P. tigris) Snow leopard (P. uncia)

Neofelis

Clouded leopard (N. nebulosa) Sunda clouded leopard (N. diardi)

Family Viverridae (includes Civets)

Paradoxurinae

Arctictis

Binturong (A. binturong)

Arctogalidia

Small-toothed palm civet (A. trivirgata)

Macrogalidia

Sulawesi palm civet (M. musschenbroekii)

Paguma

Masked palm civet (P. larvata)

Paradoxurus

Golden wet-zone palm civet (P. aureus) Asian palm civet (P. hermaphroditus) Jerdon's palm civet (P. jerdoni) Golden palm civet (P. zeylonensis)

Hemigalinae

Chrotogale

Owston's palm civet (C. owstoni)

Cynogale

Otter civet (C. bennettii)

Diplogale

Hose's palm civet (D. hosei)

Hemigalus

Banded palm civet (H. derbyanus)

Prionodontinae (Asiatic linsangs)

Prionodon

Banded linsang (P. linsang) Spotted linsang (P. pardicolor)

Viverrinae

Civettictis

African civet (C. civetta)

Genetta (Genets)

Abyssinian genet (G. abyssinica) Angolan genet (G. angolensis) Bourlon's genet (G. bourloni) Crested servaline genet (G. cristata) Common genet (G. genetta) Johnston's genet (G. johnstoni) Rusty-spotted genet (G. maculata) Pardine genet (G. pardina) Aquatic genet (G. piscivora) King genet (G. poensis) Servaline genet (G. servalina) Haussa genet (G. thierryi) Cape genet (G. tigrina) Giant forest genet (G. victoriae)

Poiana

African linsang (P. richardsonii) Leighton's linsang (P. leightoni)

Viverra

Malabar large-spotted civet (V. civettina) Large-spotted civet (V. megaspila) Malayan civet (V. tangalunga) Large Indian civet (V. zibetha)

Viverricula

Small Indian civet (V. indica)

Family Eupleridae

Euplerinae

Cryptoprocta

Fossa (C. ferox)

Eupleres

Eastern falanouc (E. goudotii) Western falanouc (E. major)

Fossa

Malagasy civet (F. fossana)

Galidiinae

Galidia

Ring-tailed mongoose (G. elegans)

Galidictis

Broad-striped Malagasy mongoose (G. fasciata) Grandidier's mongoose (G. grandidieri)

Mungotictis

Narrow-striped mongoose (M. decemlineata)

Salanoia

Brown-tailed mongoose (S. concolor) Durrell's vontsira (S. durrelli)

Suborder Caniformia (cont. below)

Ursidae (Bears)

Ailuropoda

Giant panda (A. melanoleuca)

Helarctos

Sun bear (H. malayanus)

Melursus

Sloth bear (M. ursinus)

Tremarctos

Spectacled bear (T. ornatus)

Ursus

American black bear (U. americanus) Brown bear (U. arctos) Polar bear (U. maritimus) Asian black bear (U. thibetanus)

Mephitidae

Conepatus (Hog-nosed skunks)

Molina's hog-nosed skunk (C. chinga) Humboldt's hog-nosed skunk (C. humboldtii) American hog-nosed skunk (C. leuconotus) Striped hog-nosed skunk (C. semistriatus)

Mephitis

Hooded skunk (M. macroura) Striped skunk (M. mephitis)

Mydaus

Sunda stink badger (M. javanensis) Palawan stink badger (M. marchei)

Spilogale (Spotted skunks)

Southern spotted skunk (S. angustifrons) Western spotted skunk (S. gracilis) Eastern spotted skunk (S. putorius) Pygmy spotted skunk (S. pygmaea)

Procyonidae

Bassaricyon (Olingos)

Eastern lowland olingo (B. alleni) Northern olingo (B. gabbii) Western lowland olingo (B. medius) Olinguito (B. neblina)

Bassariscus

Ring-tailed cat (B. astutus) Cacomistle (B. sumichrasti)

Nasua (Coatis inclusive)

White-nosed coati (N. narica) South American coati (N. nasua)

Nasuella (Coatis inclusive)

Western mountain coati (N. olivacea) Eastern mountain coati (N. meridensis)

Potos

Kinkajou (P. flavus)

Procyon

Crab-eating raccoon (P. cancrivorus) Raccoon (P. lotor) Cozumel raccoon (P. pygmaeus)

Ailuridae

Ailurus

Red panda (A. fulgens)

Suborder Caniformia (cont. above)

Otariidae (Eared seals) (includes fur seals and sea lions) (Pinniped inclusive)

Arctocephalus

South American fur seal (A. australis) Australasian fur seal (A. forsteri) Galápagos fur seal (A. galapagoensis) Antarctic fur seal (A. gazella) Juan Fernández fur seal (A. philippii) Brown fur seal (A. pusillus) Guadalupe fur seal (A. townsendi) Subantarctic fur seal (A. tropicalis)

Callorhinus

Northern fur seal (C. ursinus)

Eumetopias

Steller sea lion (E. jubatus)

Neophoca

Australian sea lion (N. cinerea)

Otaria

South American sea lion (O. flavescens)

Phocarctos

New Zealand sea lion (P. hookeri)

Zalophus

California sea lion (Z. californianus) Galápagos sea lion (Z. wollebaeki)

Odobenidae (Pinniped inclusive)

Odobenus

Walrus (O. rosmarus)

Phocidae (Earless seals) (Pinniped inclusive)

Cystophora

Hooded seal (C. cristata)

Erignathus

Bearded seal (E. barbatus)

Halichoerus

Gray seal (H. grypus)

Histriophoca

Ribbon seal (H. fasciata)

Hydrurga

Leopard seal (H. leptonyx)

Leptonychotes

Weddell seal (L. weddellii)

Lobodon

Crabeater seal (L. carcinophagus)

Mirounga (Elephant seals)

Northern elephant seal (M. angustirostris) Southern elephant seal (M. leonina)

Monachus

Mediterranean monk seal (M. monachus) Hawaiian monk seal (M. schauinslandi)

Ommatophoca

Ross seal (O. rossi)

Pagophilus

Harp seal (P. groenlandicus)

Phoca

Spotted seal (P. largha) Harbor seal (P. vitulina)

Pusa

Caspian seal (P. caspica) Ringed seal (P. hispida) Baikal seal (P. sibirica)

Canidae

Large family listed below

Mustelidae

Large family listed below

Family Canidae (includes dogs)

Atelocynus

Short-eared dog (A. microtis)

Canis

Side-striped jackal (C. adustus) African golden wolf (C. anthus) Golden jackal (C. aureus) Coyote (C. latrans) Gray wolf (C. lupus) Black-backed jackal (C. mesomelas) Red wolf (C. rufus) Ethiopian wolf (C. simensis)

Cerdocyon

Crab-eating fox (C. thous)

Chrysocyon

Maned wolf (C. brachyurus)

Cuon

Dhole (C. alpinus)

Lycalopex

Culpeo (L. culpaeus) Darwin's fox (L. fulvipes) South American gray fox (L. griseus) Pampas fox (L. gymnocercus) Sechuran fox (L. sechurae) Hoary fox (L. vetulus)

Lycaon

African wild dog (L. pictus)

Nyctereutes

Raccoon dog (N. procyonoides)

Otocyon

Bat-eared fox (O. megalotis)

Speothos

Bush dog (S. venaticus)

Urocyon

Gray fox (U. cinereoargenteus) Island fox (U. littoralis)

Vulpes (Foxes)

Bengal fox (V. bengalensis) Blanford's fox (V. cana) Cape fox (V. chama) Corsac fox (V. corsac) Tibetan sand fox (V. ferrilata) Arctic fox (V. lagopus) Kit fox (V. macrotis) Pale fox (V. pallida) Rüppell's fox (V. rueppelli) Swift fox (V. velox) Red fox (V. vulpes) Fennec fox (V. zerda)

Family Mustelidae

Lutrinae (Otters)

Aonyx

African clawless otter (A. capensis) Oriental small-clawed otter (A. cinerea)

Enhydra

Sea otter (E. lutris)

Hydrictis

Spotted-necked otter (H. maculicollis)

Lontra

North American river otter (L. canadensis) Marine otter (L. felina) Neotropical otter (L. longicaudis) Southern river otter (L. provocax)

Lutra

Eurasian otter (L. lutra) Hairy-nosed otter (L. sumatrana)

Lutrogale

Smooth-coated otter (L. perspicillata)

Pteronura

Giant otter (P. brasiliensis)

Mustelinae (including badgers)

Arctonyx

Hog badger (A. collaris)

Eira

Tayra (E. barbara)

Galictis

Lesser grison (G. cuja) Greater grison (G. vittata)

Gulo

Wolverine (G. gulo)

Ictonyx

Saharan striped polecat (I. libyca) Striped polecat (I. striatus)

Lyncodon

Patagonian weasel (L. patagonicus)

Martes (Martens)

American marten (M. americana) Yellow-throated marten (M. flavigula) Beech marten (M. foina) Nilgiri marten (M. gwatkinsii) European pine marten (M. martes) Japanese marten (M. melampus) Sable (M. zibellina)

Pekania

Fisher (P. pennanti)

Meles

Japanese badger (M. anakuma) Asian badger (M. leucurus) European badger (M. meles)

Mellivora

Honey badger (M. capensis)

Melogale (Ferret-badgers)

Bornean ferret-badger (M. everetti) Chinese ferret-badger (M. moschata) Javan ferret-badger (M. orientalis) Burmese ferret-badger (M. personata)

Mustela (Weasels and Ferrets)

Amazon weasel (M. africana) Mountain weasel (M. altaica) Stoat (M. erminea) Steppe polecat (M. eversmannii) Colombian weasel (M. felipei) Long-tailed weasel (M. frenata) Japanese weasel (M. itatsi) Yellow-bellied weasel (M. kathiah) European mink (M. lutreola) Indonesian mountain weasel (M. lutreolina) Black-footed ferret (M. nigripes) Least weasel (M. nivalis) Malayan weasel (M. nudipes) European polecat (M. putorius) Siberian weasel (M. sibirica) Back-striped weasel (M. strigidorsa) Egyptian weasel (M. subpalmata)

Neovison (Minks)

American mink (N. vison)

Poecilogale

African striped weasel (P. albinucha)

Taxidea

American badger (T. taxus)

Vormela

Marbled polecat (V. peregusna)

Taxon identifiers

Wd: Q971191 ADW: Spilogale_gracilis ARKive: spilogale-gracilis EoL: 310363 Fossilworks: 51745 GBIF: 2434835 iNaturalist: 58393 ITIS: 552466 IUCN: 136797 MSW: 14

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