Coast mole, Pacific mole
The coast mole or Pacific mole (Scapanus orarius ) is a medium-sized North American mole found in forested and open areas with moist soils along the Pacific coast from southwestern British Columbia to northwestern California.
Nocturnality is an animal behavior characterized by being active during the night and sleeping during the day. The common adjective is "nocturnal",...
A carnivore meaning 'meat eater' is an organism that derives its energy and nutrient requirements from a diet consisting mainly or exclusively of a...
Vermivore (from Latin vermi, meaning "worm" and vorare, "to devour") is a zoological term for animals that eat worms (including annelids, nematodes...
A fossorial animal is one adapted to digging which lives primarily but not solely, underground. Some examples are badgers, naked mole-rats, clams, ...
Terrestrial animals are animals that live predominantly or entirely on land (e.g., cats, ants, snails), as compared with aquatic animals, which liv...
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NoNot a migrant
Animals that do not make seasonal movements and stay in their native home ranges all year round are called not migrants or residents.
The coast mole is generally less than 200 mm long, with the tail being one-fourth of its total length. The fur is uniformly black. The skull is relatively narrow and long, with a sublacrimal-maxillary ridge that is underdeveloped. Teeth are uncrowned and evenly spaced.
The coast mole has a disjunct distribution, occurring from the western end of British Columbia, Canada through the western regions of Oregon and Washington, and in some parts of Northern California (coastal regions). The most extreme divergence of range for the coast mole has been seen to reach some parts of west-central Idaho. The species has a primarily fossorial lifestyle, but is not restricted solely to underground habitats. Like many other species of moles, it is capable of surfacing for scavenging purposes and juvenile dispersals, especially in the summer months. It may inhabit, but is not restricted to, agricultural land, sand dunes, grassy-meadows, sage brush, deciduous forest, and pine forests (woodpine, hemlock, and redwood).
The coast mole is primarily solitary and only become social during mating season. Coast mole populations and their corresponding tunnel systems seem to be larger in areas with damp soil and high earthworm densities. Coast moles are primarily nocturnal, but do not confine their activities to any specific part of the night. It has been found that an individual mole's activities tend to be asynchronous to those of neighboring moles.
Coast moles eat insects and other small invertebrates including earthworms, which it hunts in moderately moist soil environments. Coast moles will increase their digging activity when they sense shifting densities of earthworms. Food items found in coast mole stomachs included earthworms (the majority by mass), slugs, earthworm eggs, and larval and adult insects.
Mating usually occurs in period from late January and early March. During this time, coast moles will diverge from their normal solitary lifestyles and begin expanding their tunnel systems, even venturing into other coast mole tunnel systems in attempts to find a mating partner. Little is known about their gestation and nursing behavior. Females produce a single litter per year, and maternal care is limited. Coast mole offspring can become reproductively active within nine to ten months of birth.