kangaroo rat

noun
1.
any of various small jumping rodents of the family Heteromyidae, of Mexico and the western U.S.
2.
an Australian desert rodent of the genus Notomys.

Origin:
1780–90

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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
kangaroo rat
 
n
1.  any small leaping rodent of the genus Dipodomys, related to the squirrels and inhabiting desert regions of North America, having a stocky body and very long hind legs and tails: family Heteromyidae
2.  Also called: kangaroo mouse any of several leaping murine rodents of the Australian genus Notomys

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Example sentences
Elsewhere they have gone to court for the blunt-nosed leopard lizard and the giant kangaroo rat.
One animal uniquely adapted to life in the desert is the kangaroo rat.
As the number of seed-producing plants has declined, so has the kangaroo rat's population, but the species survives.
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