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Suborder Myomorpha contains 1,137 species of mouse-like rodents, nearly a quarter of all mammal species. Included are mice, rats, gerbils, hamsters, lemmings and voles. They are grouped according to the structure of the jaw and the structure of the molar teeth. Both their medial and lateral masseter muscles are displaced forward, making them adept at gnawing. The medial masseter muscle goes through the eye socket, a feature unique among mammals. Myomorphs are found worldwide (apart from Antarctica) in almost all land habitats. They are usually nocturnal seed-eaters.

Most myomorph species belong to superfamily Muroidea:

Historically, the definition of the suborder Myomorpha has included one or both of the following.


  • Carleton, M. D. and G. G. Musser. 2005. Order Rodentia. Pp745-752 in Mammal Species of the World A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference (D. E. Wilson and D. M. Reeder eds.). Baltimore, Johns Hopkins University Press.
  • Clutton-Brock, Juliet (ed.). 2004. Mouse-like Rodents. Pp150-159 in Animal (David Burnley ed.). London, Dorling Kindersley.

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