The Shark Bay Mouse

In Australia/New Zealand/Oceania



  • Can reach lengths of up to 115 mm. from head to tail.
  • Its tail can reach lengths of up to 125 mm.
  • Weighs around 30-61 grams


  • Has a shaggy, grizzled coat with brown color, fading into white underneath.
  • Under-parts are yellowish-gray in color
  • Tail is furred and gray on top and white on the bottom.




  • Now found only natively on Bernier Island (wiped out on all other naturally occurring islands).


  • Prefers to live in sand dunes at cliff bases and coastal sandy areas.
  • Also shelters in beach spinifex and coastal daisy where there is plenty of food.
  • Is occasionally found in heathland and mangrove.


Food Chain

Food Habits

  • Is an omnivore.
  • Diet consists of green vegetation, flowers, fungi, insects, and spiders.


  • Include feral cats and foxes.
  • Is very low on the food chain.



Habitat Adaptations

  • Nocturnal, mainly active during the night.
  • Shelters in above-ground nests under vegetation as refuge during daytime.
  • During storms, it will shelter in tunnels and runways,
  • Can be found occasionally in mangrove trees and sites among rocks for refuge during day as well.


  • Can occur year round, mostly around May to November.
  • Females may give birth twice a year to a litter of 3 or 4 after a pregnancy of 28 days.
  • Males help take care of young in captivity, but it is not known if they do in the wild.
  • Young depend on the mother for a period of 30 days, and reach adult size after a period of 70 days.

Life Span

  • About two years.


Critical Info/Endangerment


  • Threats are not fully known.
  • Predation by introduced species as cats and loss of food source due to grazing and competition with other species are causes.
  • Trampling of burrows and tunnel systems by grazing stock also contribute.
  • Bush fires leave them with no where to live.

Recovery Plan

  • Bred in captivity.
  • Introduced to islands suitable for recovery, such as Doole Island, Exmouth Gulf, the Montebello Islands, and Faure Island.
  • Introduced animals such as goats have been removed.
  • Public access has been limited.

Critical Info - Where do you come in?

What kind of critical information does the public need to know to be able to help this adorable creature? People can donate to organizations like the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species to help fund for research and a better understanding of how to protect and preserve this valued species. They can also help by advertising this poor mammal's predicament through school, work, and the Internet. Even doing something as simple as talking about this issue to a friend will help spread awareness of this situation.


Shark Bay Mouse Awareness video

Pictures/Video Attributions

Photo #1 via SB (photographer unknown)

Photo #2 via EEC (photographer unknown)

Photo #3 by Bob Goodale via ARK

Photo #4 by Tony Brown via ARK

Photo #5 via SB (photographer unknown)

Video by Hamish McKerihan (Lucky3er) via Youtube

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