Vole Facts

Vole Facts
Vole belongs to the group of rodents. There are over 155 species of voles that can be found all over the world. Voles can survive in different habitats: meadows, forests, savannas, prairies, dense grasslands, swamps, arctic areas… Voles have high reproduction rate and their number in the nature is stable. Periodically, number of voles may increase dramatically (when food sources are abundant), but it can drop equally fast as a result of sudden changes in the environment (climate changes, increase in the number of predators…). Voles are not listed as endangered species.
Interesting Vole Facts:
Size of vole depends on the species. They can reach 3.5 to 7 inches in length and couple of ounces in weight.
Body of vole is covered with fur. Color of the fur depends on the habitat. It can be grey, brown or white.
Vole looks like a mouse, but its muzzle is more blunt and rounded, tail is shorter and ears are smaller.
Vole can be a strict herbivore or an omnivore, depending on the species. It eats different types of seed, nuts, berries, tubers, tree bark, leaves, fungi, insects and snails.
Vole is mainly active during the night (nocturnal). Certain species are more active during the day during the winter period (due to decreased amount of food).
Voles are excellent swimmers. Species of voles that live near the water can survive periodical tides and flooding thanks to ability to swim and to climb to the nearby vegetations. Voles can also dive.
Certain species of voles are arboreal (live in the trees).
Most voles live in the underground burrows. They can consist of large number of tunnels that provide protection both from the predators and from the weather conditions.
Voles live in colonies that can consist of up to 300 animals.
Voles can produce sharp and quiet squeals for communication. They also communicate via chemical signals and scent marks.
Due to their small size, voles have a lot of predators. Some of them include: weasels, foxes, cats, bobcats, skunks, snakes and birds of prey. People kill voles to protect their crops.
Voles are very fast animals. They can run at the speed of 6 miles per hour.
Voles can mate throughout the whole year, but they prefer spring and summer time. Female can give birth 12 times each year, but she usually has between 3 and 5 litters.
Pregnancy lasts 21 days. Litter consists of 3 to 6 babies. They are born furless and blind. Babies depend on the mother's milk during the first two weeks. At the age of 3 to 5 weeks, young voles become sexually mature and ready to reproduce.
Voles have very short lifespan. 90% of newly born voles die in the first week of their life. Those that manage to survive first week, live between 3 and 6 months in the wild.

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