Erdei pele (Dryomys nitedula) a Bakonyban CC BY-SA 3.0 Attis (äfer#/media/Datei:Erdei_pele.jpg)

Forest dormouse


The nocturnal forest dormouse is easily recognised by its black face mask. On a light brown to grey background, it extends from the eyes to the front edge of the ears. Another clear distinguishing feature of the species is the unicoloured bushy tail, which is slightly greyer than the back.

Forest dormice are small dormice with medium-sized eyes and ears and a bushy tail. The snout-vent length is 80-113 mm, the tail length 73-119 mm, the length of the hind feet 19-24 mm and the ear length 10-15 mm. The animals weight 15-60 g. The coat colour on the upperparts ranges from reddish brown to yellowish brown to grey, the underpart is sharply contrasting greyish yellow. The tail, which is about the length of the body, is plain grey and only occasionally has a white tip. Fur length increases on the tail from the base to the tip. All feet have six sole pads.


The forest dormouse lives exclusively in forests. In its large range, which extends far into Asia, a variety of forest types are colonised. Only dry pine forests with little undergrowth are avoided (Schedl 1968). In the Eastern Alps, the forest dormouse has been found in damp spruce and spruce-beech forests rich in undergrowth (Spitzenberger 2001).

The text is a translation of an excerpt from Wikipedia (äfer). On wikipedia the text is available under a „Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike“ licence. Status: 19 August 2021