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Dicrostonyx torquatus

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA MAMMALIA RODENTIA CRICETIDAE

Scientific Name: Dicrostonyx torquatus
Species Authority: Pallas, 1778
Common Name(s):
English Arctic Lemming, Palearctic Collared Lemming
Spanish Rata de Campo
Taxonomic Notes: Once believed to encompass most or all New World populations, but karyotypic and breeding evidence supports the strict application of D. torquatus for only Eurasian populations (see Wilson and Reeder 2005 and references therein).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Tsytsulina, K., Formozov, N. & Sheftel, B.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Temple, H. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
Justification:
There are no major threats to the species which is common and abundant. Consequently it is assessed as Least Concern. However, the collared lemming subspecies from Novaya Zemlya (Dicrostonyx torquatus ungulatus) is considered as Vulnerable under Russian nature conservation legislation (included in Red Book of Russian Federation since 1998).

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: "Arctic and sub-Arctic tundra and forest-tundra in the Palearctic, from White Sea, W Russia, to Chukotski Peninsula, NE Siberia, and Kamchatka; including Novaya Zemlya and New Siberian islands, Arctic Ocean" (Wilson and Reeder 2005), but excluding Wrangel Island (Gromov and Erbaeva 1995, Pavlinov et al. 2002).
Countries:
Native:
Russian Federation
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Common throughout the distributional area. Shows extreme cycles of abundance approximately every three years. Apparent population declines in the European part of the distribution area may have been the result of natural population fluctuation.
Population Trend: Stable

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Inhabits arctic and subarctic tundra and forest-tundra with small Salix spp. bushes. Lives in colonies with simple burrows along feeding routes; nesting and seed storage chambers used collectively. Activity is multiphase and may occur around the clock. Feeds on shoots and leaves of willows and birches, and vegetation and berries of cloudberry, great bilberry and other species. Litters 2-3 times a year with 5-6 young each time. A migratory species.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): No major threats known at present, but climate change may threaten the species in the future.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The species occurs in several protected areas. The collared lemming subspecies from Novaya Zemlya (Dicrostonyx torquatus ungulatus) is considered as Vulnerable under Russian nature conservation legislation (included in Red Book of Russian Federation since 1998).

Citation: Tsytsulina, K., Formozov, N. & Sheftel, B. 2008. Dicrostonyx torquatus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 02 September 2014.
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