Temperature and rainfall are important factors that shape rodent population cycles, especially in dry habitats where food and water are in limited supply. We studied population dynamics of the pinyon mouse and the pocket mouse in a semi-arid habitat in California, USA. Our results suggest that seasonal rainfall and variation in temperature at the local level, rather than regional climatic patterns (like El Niño effects), more strongly impacted survival and recruitment rates in pinyon mice. Brush mice maintained their population through multiple coping strategies, investing in high recruitment during warmer and drier periods and allocating more energy towards survival during cooler and wetter conditions. Examining such links between rodent population dynamics and environmental factors are critical for understanding impacts of global climate change. The study is published as a paper and can be accessed here.