|dc.description.abstract||Natural history, distributions, and parasites of mammals of Cook County, Minnesota, were studied
from the summer of 1971 through the summer of 1973. The purposes of this research were twofold. First,
to determine species composition and relative abundance of individual species present in the county
today. These base-line data may be used to project both back in time and into the future to assess
man s effects on the mammalian fauna of the area. Second, to develop a technique for analyzing similarities
and differences between the parasite fauna of groups of hosts as a tool in systematic and ecological
research. Data on the mammalian fauna of Cook County were obtained through field collecting, by
examination of mammal specimens from the county in collections, from discussions with individuals
familiar with the local mammalian fauna, and from the published literature.
The present mammalian fauna of Cook County is composed of 48 species of verified occurrence.
Eleven other species may be inhabitants of the county, but documentation of their occurrence there is
lacking. Data presented for verified species includes localities of record, comments on abundance, refiroduction,
habitats, taxonomy, parasites, and pertinent literature. Known distributions and pertinent
iterature are presented for the eleven species or unverified occurrence. All mammalian species of verified
occurrence have been reported from the state previously; however, the records of Sorex arcticus, Sorex
palustris, Condylura cristata, Myotis keenii, Lasionycteris noctivagans, Lasiurus borealis, Microtus
chrotorrhinus, Synaptomys cooperi, Napaeozapus insignis, Procuon lotor, Martes americana, Martes
pennanti, and Lynx canadensis especially aid in our understanding of their distribution and natural
Ectoparasites representing three widespread groups of parasitic arthropods (Anoplura, Siphonaptera,
Acari) were found parasitizing 20 species of small mammals in the county. Host-parasite records are presented
for 23 species of fleas, 11 species of mites, 6 species of sucking lice, and 3 species of ticks. New
host records are reported for six species of mites and one species of tick. New state records are recorded
for seven species of mites and five species of fleas.
A technique was developed which produced an artificial classification of the mammalian fauna based
entirely on the similarity of the ectoparasitic fauna between species. Similarity was calculated using
Sorensen's similarity coefficient. An agglomerative clustering program utilizing within-group sums of
squares was used to produce a two dimensional phenogram of the hosts. This clustering technique may
prove to be of value in comparisons of similarity and difference between hosts or other communities.
Man's effect on the mammalian fauna has been to increase species diversity. The recent additions
to the mammalian fauna are of deciduous forest affinity, are widespread in North America, or are introduced.
Two species of coniferous forest affinity, Gulo gulo and Rangifer tarandus, have been extirpated
recently from the county. It is hypothesized that most future additions to the mammalian fauna of Cook
County, Minnesota, will be of deciduous forest, widespread, or the introduced category of faunal affinity.||