Brevard Zoo Conservation Report 2016 | Page 11

>C  onservation challenges Coastal development, feral cats, rising sea levels and hurricanes all pose threats to their survival. >D  id you know? Despite their small size, Perdido Key beach mice are one of seven subspecies integral to coastal dune ecosystems across Florida and neighboring areas in Alabama. They help sow the seeds of dune-stabilizing plants, like sea oats and bluestem, and as they dig tunnels, it helps aerate the soil to stimulate plant growth. Where are they? Beach mice are hard to find. They have a white and gray coloring that camouflages them on the sand. In addition, they are nocturnal— spending the daylight hours in burrows and then foraging for sea oat and beach grass seeds at night. 10