Wood mouse

Peeping wood mouse
Also known as the long-tailed field mouse, this is the most common mouse of the countryside. Smaller and darker than its rarer cousin the yellow-necked mouse, the wood mouse is mainly nocturnal. It will sit up and wash all over, especially if scared. It is an excellent climber and will leap high in the air when disturbed.

They are found in woods, scrub and hedgerows throughout Britain and Ireland. They live in underground burrow systems containing nest chambers and food stores.

It has many enemies; weasels, stoats, cats, foxes and owls.

Wood mice are omnivorous eating acorns, nuts, haws, seeds, fungi, insects, larvae and spiders. Food is stored in underground burrows or occasionally in disused bird nests.

Size: 8.1 - 10.3 cm nose to tail, tail 7.1 - 9.3 cm.

Weight: 13 - 27 g. Larger than a house mouse.

Breeding: Wood mice breed from March - October, peaking from July - August. Usually 4 - 7 litters of 2 - 9 young are produced per year. Females can breed from 2 months old.

Life expectancy 18 - 20 months, very few survive two winters.

Nest: Below ground, usually under the roots of trees, consists of a ball of dry grass, moss and leaves.

Population: Pre-breeding season estimated to be in excess of 38 million.
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