Friday 1 May 2015

May 2015 Mammal of the Month - The Hazel Dormouse

Hazel Dormouse - Photo credit: Becky Thomas

Happy May Day!

We’re pleased to announce that our Mammal of the Month for May is the hazel dormouse. They are just coming out of hibernation at this time of year so it is the perfect time to welcome the species as our Mammal of the Month.

Our top five dormice facts are:

  1. As well as hibernating over the winter, dormice can also go into a state called torpor in poor weather to save energy. Their body temperature becomes lower and they appear to be in a deep sleep
  2. Dormice rarely come to the ground, instead using tree and shrub branches to move around
  3. Females usually have one litter of about four young and the young stay with their mother for up to 8 weeks.
  4. In the UK, dormice are mostly found in southern England with some in Wales. It is rare to find populations north of the Midlands.
  5. There are surprisingly few dormouse records for Berkshire but we are hoping that our nest box sites may provide more during this year’s checks.

Find out lots more about dormice via the Mammal Society's webpage for the species where you can also download a species factsheet

Dormouse records are hard to come by but do let us know if you spot any when you're out and about and please record sightings or signs of any mammal here

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