Bank Vole Myodes glareolus


Bank Vole Myodes glareolus

Feeding on tit-bits of bread, side of local canal. 17th September 2011. © Peter Hillman

Family Muridae

Head & body length 8-12 cm.
Tail length 3.3-48 cm.
Weight 14-40 g.

The Bank Vole is one of Britain’s smallest voles. Typically it has a reddish-chestnut coloured coat and a cream underbelly. It has large ears, small eyes, a rounded snout and a short hairy tail. Similar to the Field Vole (Microtus agrestis), which is larger and has a shorter tail ( tail length half the body length, two-thirds in Bank Vole). Always on the alert for danger, as it has many predators like snakes, foxes, owls and kestrels. Acitive all year round, it does not hibernate.

Nests are in shallow burrows beneath the earth which it lines with leaves, grass, moss or feathers. The female has litters of up to 3 to 5 blind young between April and October. Active day or night, it forages for food for fairly long distances. It can live for up to 18 months.

It feeds on grass, roots, nuts, seeds, insects and earthworms. It is a good climber and will climb up vegetation to eat fruit.

Seen all year round it is found in broadleaf woodland, scrubland, hedgerows, parks and sometimes well established gardens. Native to Great Britain, common and widespread.

Recorded and accepted via iRecord.