Atlas der Säugetiere Nordrhein-Westfalens
AG Säugetierkunde in NRW
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The Bank Vole is a typical arvicoline in forests, thickets and hedges. As their German name [Reddish Mouse] epitomizes, the animals display a reddish dorsal colouration, very rarely pure white (albinistic) or pure black (melanistic) individuals can occur. The tail is more than a third as long as the head-and-body length. Bank Voles are diurnal and crepuscular, and for this reason they can be easily observed on sunny days, especially in March and April, when they scurry through the leaf litter. Bank Voles live on herbaceous plants, seeds that contain oil, but also insects and other invertebrates. In Europe their abundance is dependant on the seed production (mast) of beech, oak and hazel. It is only with a good food base in autumn that many animals can survive the winter and in the following year can contribute to reproduction. When there is no mast, the populations of Bank Voles can collapse during the winter, so that at times hardly any animals can be recorded. But with an improved food base the populations usually recover fast. In Central Europe the average litter size is around four young. Under favourable climatic conditions Bank Voles start reproducing in March and the offspring is nursed until October. A female Bank Vole usually achieves three litters during its lifespan.
In NRW the Bank Vole is represented area-wide in suitable habitats. Gaps in the records are based on monitoring deficits, not an actual species absence.
Meinig H (2021): Rötelmaus (Clethrionomys glareolus).In: AG Säugetierkunde NRW — Online-Atlas of the mammals of North Rhine-Westphalia. Downloaded from saeugeratlas-nrw.lwl.org on 2021/04/14
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