Striped Field Mouse, Apodemus agrarius

The striped field mouse (Apodemus agrarius) has a range that extends from Eastern Europe to Japan, and includes Siberia and Taiwan. It prefers a habitat within cornfields and other agricultural fields or human populated areas, and forests. It has many synonyms, or other names, including Apodemus albostriatus given by Bechstein in 1801 and Apodemus volgensis given by Kuznetzov in 1944.

This mouse can reach an average body length of up to 4.9 inches, with a tail length of up to 3.5 inches and weight of 1.7 ounces. It is typically grey-brown on the dorsal areas and pale gray on the underbelly.  It bears a dark striped that extends down the middle of its back.

The striped field mouse will dig a small, shallow burrow in which it rears young and sleeps. During the cold months of winter, it is primarily active during the day, but during summer, it is more active at night. It does not live in burrows during the winter, instead choosing warmer haystacks, dwellings, and storehouses.

This mouse breeds three to five times a year producing an average of six young per litter. The number of young produced each year can be limited if rains are frequent or by early freezes and predation. Its diet consists of many things including green vegetation, seeds, insects, and roots. This species is known as one of the biggest agricultural pests within its range, and as a disease carrier. The striped field mouse appears on the IUCN Red List with a conservation status of “Least Concern”.

Image Caption: Striped Field Mouse, Apodemus agrarius. Credit: Gower/Wikipedia