NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF UKRAINE
State Museum of Natural History
Biodiversity Data Centre

Microtus agrestis (Linnaeus, 1761)

Synonym
  • Mus agrestis Linnaeus, 1761
Vernacular Name
Field Vole
Images
Conservation status
No status defined
Value of species
Remarks
Detail
Microtus agrestis agrestis (Linnaeus, 1761) Microtus agrestis armoricanus Balsac & Beaufort, 1966 Microtus agrestis estiae Reinwaldt, 1927 Microtus agrestis gregarius (Linnaeus, 1766) Microtus agrestis levernedii (Crespon, 1844) Microtus agrestis macgillivraii Barrett-Hamilton & Hinton, 1913 Microtus agrestis neglectus (Jenyns, 1841) Microtus agrestis nigra (Fatio, 1869) The field vole is a widespread Palaearctic species, ranging from western Europe eastwards through Russia to Lake Baikal in south-east Siberia. It is present in Great Britain, central and northern parts of the continent (Portugal, Spain, France, Switzerland, Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovenia and Serbia), but it is absent from Iceland, Ireland southern Europe (Zima 1999, Shenbrot and Krasnov 2005). The Mediterranean populations may be a separate species, but more taxonomic work is needed to confirm this. It occurs from sea level to 2,100 m in the Alps (Spitzenberger 2002). It is generally common, although it may be locally rare in marginal parts of its range in western and central Europe. In some areas, population density fluctuates markedly over a cycle of approximately three to four years. In peak years it can cause damage to pastures, orchards and forestry plantations (Zima 1999). It occurs in a wide range of habitats including grasslands, woods, upland heaths, dunes, marshes, peat-bogs and river-banks, tending to prefer damp areas. It occurs in a number of anthropogenic habitats including meadows, field-margins and young forestry plantations, but is absent from heavily grazed areas (Zima 1999). The field vole is predominantly herbivorous, feeding on grasses and herbaceous plants, and gnawing bark in the winter. Exceptionally, animal prey (e.g. dipteran larvae) are taken (Krapp and Niethammer 1982).
Book reference
  • Татаринов К. А. Звірі західних областей України (матеріали до вивчення фауни Української РСР). - Київ: Вид-во АН УРСР, 1956. - 188 с.
Experts

Taxonomic branch

Biota
Eukaryota
Animalia
Eumetazoa
Chordata
Gnathostomata
Mammalia
Muriformes
Arvicolidae