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Temporal range: Middle Miocene - Recent
Hypogeomys antimena
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Rodentia
Superfamily: Muroidea
Family: Nesomyidae
Major, 1897


Nesomyidae is a family of African rodents in the large and complicated superfamily Muroidea. It includes many subfamilies, which all live in Africa. Malagasy rats and mice, climbing mice, African rock mice, swamp mice, pouched rats, and the white-tailed rat are in this family.


Nesomyids are small to medium rodents, and the largest is the size of a rat. They may look like mice, rats, voles, or hamsters, depending on the species and subfamily. They can either eat plant and meat totally, or insects totally. Their habits are also different, with some species climbing trees, and others digging holes in the ground to hide. They can give birth to the most four babies after being in the mother's womb for about six weeks.


Many of these animals were once thought to be related to other groups of muroid rodents, but this African-based group has been confirmed to be different from the other muroids based on genetic studies. Still, all members of the Nesomyidae are placed in the family Muridae along with all other members of the Muroidea.

The Nesomyids are classified in 5 subfamilies, 22 genera and 55 species.



  • Jansa, S. A. and M. Weksler. Phylogeny of muroid rodents: relationships within and among major lineages as determined by IRBP gene sequences. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 31:256-276.
  • Michaux, J., A. Reyes, and F. Catzeflis. 2001. Evolutionary history of the most speciose mammals: molecular phylogeny of muroid rodents. Molecular Biology and Evolution, 17:280-293.