Ground hog weighs about 20 lbs and is about 6" in diameter. Gophers are half the size of a gray squirrel and burrows underground.
Baird's Pocket Gopher
The pocket gophers are burrowing rodents of the family Geomyidae. These are the "true" gophers, though several ground squirrels of the family Sciuridae are often called gophers as well. The name "pocket gopher" on its own may be used to refer to any of a number of genera within the family.
Fauna of the United States
Baird’s pocket gopher or the Louisiana pocket gopher (Geomys breviceps) is a species of pocket gopher that is native to the southern United States. In total, there are three almost identical species of eastern pocket gopher; Geomys attwateri, G. bursarius, and G. breviceps. G. breviceps is larger in size, G. attwateri is medium sized and G. bursarius is a bit smaller. Other than by size variation they are not identifiable by external features. Baird’s pocket gophers are small rodents with most of their weight on the top half of their bodies.
Baird’s pocket gopher is native to eastern Texas, western Louisiana, eastern Oklahoma and southwestern Arkansas. It is a burrowing creature, meaning it digs tunnels and generally lives underground, except during the rainy seasons. It has sharp, long, curved front claws designed specifically for digging. Generally, it is safe from predators since it lives underground, though other burrowing rodents such as badgers and long tailed weasels may pose a threat. Baird’s pocket gopher has bacteria in its digestive system, allowing it to digest various grasses and it is able to re-ingest fecal pellets. It is polygamous and has a high reproductive rate, which is one of the main reasons for its survival. On average, Baird’s pocket gopher has two to three babies per litter. It lives about 1 to 2 years in the wild.
The fauna of the United States of America is all the animals living in the Continental United States and its surrounding seas and islands, the Hawaiian Archipelago, Alaska in the Arctic, and several island-territories in the Pacific and in the Caribbean. The U.S. has arguably the most diverse fauna in the world and has many distinctive indigenous species found nowhere else on Earth. With most of the North American continent, the U.S. lies in the Nearctic faunistic realm, a region containing an assemblage of species similar to Northern parts of Africa and Eurasia. An estimated 432 species of mammals characterize the fauna of the continental U.S. More than 800 species of bird and there are more than 100 000 known species of insects. There are 311 known reptiles, 295 amphibians and 1154 known fish species in the U.S. Known animals that exist in all of the Lower 48 include white-tailed deer, bobcat, raccoon, muskrat, striped skunk, barn owl, American mink, American beaver, North American river otter and red fox.
Huge parts of the most beautiful parts of the country with the most distinctive indengious wildlife are protected as national parks. In 2013, the U.S. has more than 6770 national parks or protected areas, all together more than 2,607,131 km2. The first national park was Yellowstone National Park in the State of Wyoming, established in 1872. Yellowstone National Park is widely considered to be the finest megafauna wildlife habitat in the U.S. There are 67 species of mammals in the park, including the gray wolf, the threatened lynx, and grizzly bears.