Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Rodentia Cricetidae

Scientific Name: Microtus arvalis
Species Authority: (Pallas, 1778)
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Common Vole
French Campagnol Des Champs
Spanish Topillo Campesino
Microtus obscurus (Eversmann, 1841)
Taxonomic Notes: The species consists of two allopatric chromosomal races (“arvalis” and “obscurus”: Wilson and Reeder 2005).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Amori, G., Hutterer, R., Kryštufek, B., Yigit, N., Mitsain, G. & Palomo, L.J.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Temple, H. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
This is a very widespread and common species with no threats. Assessed as Least Concern.
Previously published Red List assessments:
1996 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Microtus arvalis has a large range extending from Spain across much of western, central and eastern Europe to the Middle East and central Russia (Shenbrot and Krasnov 2005). Isolated populations exist in Iberia, Guernsey and the Orkney Islands. It is absent from much of southern Europe, Fennoscandia, northern Russia, Iceland and the British Isles (with the exception of the Orkney Islands, where it was introduced prehistorically). The species occurs from sea level to 2,600 m (Spitzenberger 2002).
Countries occurrence:
Andorra; Armenia (Armenia); Austria; Azerbaijan; Belarus; Belgium; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Bulgaria; China; Croatia; Czech Republic; Denmark; Estonia; Finland; France; Georgia; Germany; Hungary; Iran, Islamic Republic of; Italy; Kazakhstan; Latvia; Liechtenstein; Lithuania; Luxembourg; Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of; Moldova; Mongolia; Montenegro; Netherlands; Poland; Portugal; Romania; Russian Federation; Serbia (Serbia); Slovakia; Slovenia; Spain; Switzerland; Ukraine; United Kingdom
Upper elevation limit (metres): 3000
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: It is a common species throughout much of its range, with population densities of over 1,000 individuals per ha reported in peak years. Population densities may fluctuate markedly from year to year.
Current Population Trend: Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Found in a wide variety of open habitats including moist meadows, forest steppe, moist forest and sometimes agricultural areas. It feeds mainly on the green parts of grasses and herbaceous plants, and is a serious agricultural pest in some areas (Zima 1999).
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The species is not under threat.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The species is present in many protected areas. It is often considered a pest as it damages crops.

Citation: Amori, G., Hutterer, R., Kryštufek, B., Yigit, N., Mitsain, G. & Palomo, L.J. 2008. Microtus arvalis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T13488A4027954. . Downloaded on 14 October 2015.
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