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Ellobius talpinus

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA MAMMALIA RODENTIA CRICETIDAE

Scientific Name: Ellobius talpinus
Species Authority: (Pallas, 1770)
Common Name(s):
English Northern Mole Vole
Taxonomic Notes: Up to four subspecies are recognized, but eastern forms need taxonomic revision (Gromov and Erbaeva 1995).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Tsytsulina, K. & Zagorodnyuk, I.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Temple, H. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
Justification:
This species has a wide range. Population size has not been quantified, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for the population size criterion of the IUCN Red List (i.e. less than 10,000 mature individuals in conjunction with appropriate decline rates and subpopulation qualifiers), as the species is described as common in at least parts of its range. Although declines have been reported in some parts of the range, it is not believed to approach the threshold for the population decline criterion of the IUCN Red List (i.e. declining more than 30% in ten years or three generations). For these reasons, it is evaluated as Least Concern. However, in Ukraine this species is considered to be threatened.
History:
1996 Lower Risk/least concern (Baillie and Groombridge 1996)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Steppe grassland and semi-deserts in SE Europe, Kazakhstan (except SE Kazakhstan), Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan. Sometimes found in forest-steppes.
Countries:
Native:
Kazakhstan; Russian Federation; Turkmenistan; Ukraine; Uzbekistan
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Common throughout most of the range. In some parts it is abundant on cultivated lands, especially along forest belts, where one hectare could be inhabited by 15 family groups. In some parts in Russia and Kazakhstan it is a considerable pest. The population in Ukraine is fragmented and declining owing to cultivation of steppe areas. It has been extirpated from areas between Dnieper River and Lugansk region, and from the Dnieper to Crimea (I. Zagorodnyuk pers. comm. 2006).
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: A typical subterranean steppe mammal. Lives in large groups, digs complex burrows which may be inhabited by around ten animals. Colonies are very mobile. Burrow entrances usually sealed with soil. Feeds on subterranean plant parts. Nesting chambers (especially winter ones) and foraging chambers are usually about 4 meters underground. Seldom emerges above ground (usually only to clear soil from the burrow or to disperse, rarely for feeding). During dispersal could cover distances up to 800 meters. No real hibernation, but in winter as well as during summer heat and drought, activity declines significantly. During the warm period of the year gives birth to two litters with 2-3 young in each.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): No major threats at present to the species as a whole. Cultivation of steppe habitat may lead to fragmentation of social groups and populations.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: As the species is abundant across most of the range and even sometimes a considerable agricultural pest, there have been no conservation measures in Russia and Kazakhstan. Ukrainian populations are severely fragmented and recently Ellobius talpinus was included in new edition of the Ukraine Red Data Book.

Citation: Tsytsulina, K. & Zagorodnyuk, I. 2008. Ellobius talpinus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 28 August 2014.
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