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Deadman Cave

AZ: Pima Co., 1400 m.


Site map for Deadman Cave, ArizonaAge. Late Wisconsin/Holocene. Mead et al. (1984) believed the fauna dates between 12 kya and 8 kya, thus representing the Late Wisconsin and Early Holocene.

General Description. Mead et al. (1984): Deadman Cave is a limestone cave on the northeastern side of the Santa Catalina Mountains. Current vegetation is desert-grassland with some elements of oak woodland. "A shaft built by miners during the 1800s cuts through two travertine layers and provides access to a lower room and the bone deposit, sealed off from the rest of the cave since approximately 8000 B.P. (Mead et al. 1984:248).

Discussion. Mead et al. (1984) speculate that Ringtail and Spotted Skunk, along with owls, were responsible for most of the deposit, while noting that the cave may have been used as a den by large carnivores, thus explaining the presence of such large forms as horses.



Scaphiopus couchii—Couch's Spadefoot (Mead et al. 1984)
Spea multiplicata—Mexican Spadefoot (Mead et al. 1984: cf.)

Scaphiopus hammondi

Anaxyrus punctatus—Red-spotted Toad (Mead et al. 1984)

Bufo punctatus

Anaxyrus woodhousii—Woodhouse's Toad (Mead et al. 1984: cf.)

Bufo woodhousei

Lithobates sp.—North American True Frogs (Mead et al. 1984)


Crotaphytus collaris—Eastern Collared Lizard (Mead et al. 1984)
Heloderma suspectum—Gila Monster (Mead et al. 1984)
Callisaurus draconoides—Zebratail Lizard (Mead et al. 1984)
Holbrookia maculata—Lesser Earless Lizard (Mead et al. 1984)
Cophosaurus texana—Greater Earless Lizard (Mead et al. 1984)

Holbrookia texana

Phrynosoma hernandesi—Mountain Short-horned Lizard (Mead et al. 1984)

Phrynosoma douglassi

Phrynosoma modestum—Roundtail Horned Lizard (Mead et al. 1984)
Phrynosoma solare—Regal Horned Lizard (Mead et al. 1984)
Sceloporus clarkii—Clark's Spiny Lizard (Mead et al. 1984: cf.)
Sceloporus magister—Desert Spiny Lizard (Mead et al. 1984: cf.)
Sceloporus cowlesi—Southern Plateau Spiny Lizard (Mead et al. 1984)

Sceloporus undulatus. Identification as S. cowlesi based solely on modern distribution.

Urosaurus ornatus—Tree Lizard (Mead et al. 1984)
Aspidoscelis sp.—North American Whiptails (Mead et al. 1984)


Arizona elegans—Eastern Glossy Snake (Mead et al. 1984)
Gyalopion canum—Western Hooknose Snake (Mead et al. 1984)
Lampropeltis getula—Common Kingsnake (Mead et al. 1984)
Masticophis sp.—Coachwhips (Mead et al. 1984)
Pituophis catenifer—Gopher Snake (Mead et al. 1984)

Pituophis melanoleucus

Rhinocheilus lecontei—Long-nosed Snake (Mead et al. 1984)
Salvadora sp.—Patchnose Snakes (Mead et al. 1984)
Trimorphodon lambda—Sonoran Lyre Snake (Mead et al. 1984)

Trimorphodon biscutatus

Crotalus atrox—Western Diamondback Rattlesnake (Mead et al. 1984)
Crotalus scutulatus—Mojave Rattlesnake (Mead et al. 1984)

Hypsiglena "torquata"—Nightsnake (Mead et al. 1984)

Mead et al. (1984) list Hypsiglena torquata. More recently, the species known by that name in 1984 has been split into three species in our area. See the H. "torquata" account for further discussion.


Callipepla gambelii—Gambel's Quail (Mead et al. 1984)

Colinus gambelii

Cyrtonyx montezumae—Montezuma Quail (Mead et al. 1984)
Zenaida macroura—Mourning Dove (Mead et al. 1984: cf.)
Asio otus—Long-eared Owl (Mead et al. 1984)
Megascops/Otus sp.—Scops Owls or Flammulated Owl (Mead et al. 1984)

As Otus sp. The genus has been split since 1984; all American species are transferred to Megascops except the Flammulated Owl, which remains for the time being in Otus

Micrathene whitneyi—Elf Owl (Mead et al. 1984)
Caprimulgidae—Nightjars (Mead et al. 1984)
Colaptes auratus—Northern Flicker (Mead et al. 1984)
Catharus guttatus—Hermit Thrush (Mead et al. 1984)
Turdus migratorius—American Robin (Mead et al. 1984: cf.)
Icterinae, probably extinct species—Blackbirds (Mead et al. 1984)
Emberizidae—Sparrows, Buntings, and Towhees (Mead et al. 1984)


Nothrotheriops shastensis–Shasta Ground Sloth (Mead et al. 1984)
Otospermophilus variegatus—Rock Squirrel (Mead et al. 1984)

Spermophilus variegatus

Perognathus flavus—Silky Pocket Mouse (Mead et al. 1984: cf.)
Dipodomys spectabilis—Bannertail Kangaroo Rat (Mead et al. 1984)
Thomomys bottae—Botta's Pocket Gopher (Mead et al. 1984: cf.)
Microtus sp.—Voles (Mead et al. 1984)
Neotoma albigula—White-throated Woodrat (Mead et al. 1984)
Peromyscus sp.—Deer Mice (Mead et al. 1984)
Reithrodontomys montanus—Plains Harvest Mouse (Mead et al. 1984)
Sigmodon arizonae—Arizona Cotton Rat (Mead et al. 1984: cf.)
Lepus sp.—Jackrabbit (Mead et al. 1984)
Sylvilagus sp.—Cottontail (Mead et al. 1984)
Notiosorex sp.—Notiosorex shrews (Mead et al. 1984)

Notiosorex crawfordi

Antrozous pallidus—Pallid Bat (Mead et al. 1984)
Myotis sp.—Myotis Bats (Mead et al. 1984: Cf. genus)
Puma concolor—Mountain Lion (Mead et al. 1984)

Felis concolor

Mephitis macroura—Hooded Skunk (Mead et al. 1984)
Spilogale sp.—Spotted Skunks (Mead et al. 1984)

Spilogale putorius. This taxon has been divided into eastern and western forms. Likely this represents S. gracilis, the western form; criteria for separating the species on the basis of post-cranial skeletal elements are unknown.

Bassariscus astutus—Ringtail (Mead et al. 1984)
Equus sp.—Horses (Mead et al. 1984)
Odocoileus sp.—Odocoline Deer (Mead et al. 1984)
Euceratherium collinum—Shrub Ox (Mead et al. 1984)

Literature. Mead et al. 1984.


Last Update: 8 Dec 2012