The harvest mouse (Micromys minutus ) is a small rodent native to Europe and Asia. It is typically found in fields of cereal crops, such as wheat and oats, in reed beds and in other tall ground vegetation, such as long grass and hedgerows. It has reddish-brown fur with white underparts and a naked, highly prehensile tail, which it uses for climbing. It is the smallest European rodent; an adult may weigh as little as 4 grams (0.14 oz). It eats chiefly seeds and insects, but also nectar and fruit. Breeding nests are spherical constructions carefully woven from grass and attached to stems well above the ground.
Diurnal animals are active during the daytime, with a period of sleeping or other inactivity at night. The timing of activity by an animal depends ...
Nocturnality is an animal behavior characterized by being active during the night and sleeping during the day. The common adjective is "nocturnal",...
An omnivore is an animal that has the ability to eat and survive on both plant and animal matter. Obtaining energy and nutrients from plant and ani...
A frugivore is an animal that thrives mostly on raw fruits or succulent fruit-like produce of plants such as roots, shoots, nuts, and seeds. Approx...
Terrestrial animals are animals that live predominantly or entirely on land (e.g., cats, ants, snails), as compared with aquatic animals, which liv...
Altricial animals are those species whose newly hatched or born young are relatively immobile. They lack hair or down, are not able to obtain food ...
Among animals, viviparity is the development of the embryo inside the body of the parent. The term 'viviparity' and its adjective form 'viviparous'...
NoNot a migrant
Animals that do not make seasonal movements and stay in their native home ranges all year round are called not migrants or residents.
Eurasian harvest mice are the smallest rodents in Europe. The upper part of the body is brown, sometimes with a yellow or red tinge; the under-parts range from white to cream coloured. The eyes and ears are relatively large. These mice have small noses, with short, stubble-like whiskers, and thick, soft fur, somewhat thicker in winter than in summer. Eurasian harvest mice have a prehensile tail which is usually bicoloured and furless at the tip. Their broad feet are adapted specifically for climbing, with a somewhat opposable, large outermost toe. It allows the animal to grip stems with each hindfoot and its tail, thus freeing the mouse's forepaws for food collection. The tail is also used for balance.
Eurasian harvest mice are native to Europe and Asia. They range from northern Spain and Great Britain through Europe, eastern Fennoscandia, and Russia to northern Mongolia, China, the Korean peninsula, northeast India, Myanmar and Viet Nam. These mice also occur in Japan and Taiwan. Eurasian harvest mice are typically found in fields of cereal crops, such as wheat and oats, in reed beds and in other tall ground vegetation, such as long grass and hedgerows.
Eurasian harvest mice are social and live in small, overlapping home territories. During the cooler months, animals build a sleeping nest from grass on the ground or in a shallow burrow if they can not find a better shelter. These mice do not hibernate. They can be active during the day and night. When escaping enemies, Eurasian harvest mice move slowly, and make a "camouflage posture" as a defense, and remain motionless against the stalk of the grass. If danger persists, they drop into the darkness of the ground level.
Eurasian harvest mice are omnivorous animals. They feed on grasses, different seeds, fruits, and grain. In the summer, they also consume insects and larvae.
Little is known about the mating system in Eurasian harvest mice. However, males and females are known to come together only to mate and construct a breeding nest, after that the female chases the male away. Young are born in nests that are built about 100-130 cm above the ground. Construction on these nests begins during the spring and summer breeding season. One nest is built for each litter of young. Reproduction usually starts around April and ends in September. The gestation period lasts around 17-18 days. Females usually give birth to 1-13 young, but usually around 3-8. Pups are born naked and blind. They open their eyes at 8-10 days. They are weaned and become independent at around 15-16 days of age. Young Eurasian harvest mice become reproductively mature in 35 days.
There are no major threats to Eurasian harvest mice at present. However, in some areas of their range the animals might suffer from the loss and degradation of wetland habitats
According to IUCN, the Eurasian harvest mouse is locally common and widespread throughout its range but no overall population estimate is available. Currently, this species is classified as Least Concern (LC) on the IUCN Red List and its numbers today remain stable.
These rodents are sometimes kept as pets due to their small size, they are very easy to care for, they require low maintenance and to be kept in groups.
Social animals are those animals that interact highly with other animals, usually of their own species (conspecifics), to the point of having a rec...