- Mus avellanarius Linnaeus, 1758
Hazel Dormouse, Common Dormouse
Be (III); EUHD (IV)
Value of species
The common dormouse occurs in Europe and northern Asia Minor (Turkey). In continental Europe, it is fairly widespread, although it is absent from Iberia, south-west France, and northern parts of Fennoscandia and Russia. It is also absent from eastern Ukraine and southern Russia. Island populations occur in southern Britain and on Corfu and Sicily (Morris 1999, Rossolimo et al. (2001). In the Alps it occurs up to 1,920 m (Spitzenberger 2002).
Population trends vary in different parts of the range: in some areas it is declining, in others it is considered stable. In parts of its northern range (e.g., UK, Netherlands, Sweden, Germany, Denmark) populations are declining and fragmented as a result of habitat loss and fragmentation. However, in Lithuania it is a common and widespread species, and no decline has been observed (Juškaitis 2003). Population densities may reach c.10 individuals per hectare in optimal habitat, but densities are significantly lower in less favourable habitats (Morris 1999).
It inhabits deciduous woodland, favouring forest edge, secondary growth, coppices, and other wooded areas with a dense shrubby understorey. It is also found in hedgerows in farmland. It is an arboreal feeder, foraging on flowers, insects and fruit.
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