Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Rodentia Cricetidae

Scientific Name: Ellobius tancrei
Species Authority: Blasius, 1884
Common Name(s):
English Zaisan Mole Vole
Ellobius kastschenkoi Thomas, 1912
Ellobius ognevi Dukelsky, 1927
Ellobius ursulus Thomas, 1912

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Batsaikhan, N. & Tinnin, D.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Tsytsulina, K. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
Rationale for assessment: This species has a large population size and a wide distribution. No decline in population size has been detected, and there are no known widespread major threats.
Previously published Red List assessments:
1996 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Distributed in lowland and mountain semi-deserts and deserts in Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, SE Kazakhstan, China, Mongolia (NW, central and SE), and Tuva (Russia). In China found in N Xinjiang through Mongolia to Nei Mongol and extending south to S Gansu and Shaanxi.
Countries occurrence:
China; Kazakhstan; Mongolia; Russian Federation; Turkmenistan; Uzbekistan
Upper elevation limit (metres): 4000
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: No data are available at present.
Current Population Trend: Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Inhabits steppes, semideserts, deserts and grasslands, especially in moist valleys and near the banks of lakes and streams. Sometimes found in oasis farmlands. Feeds on the underground parts of plants and especially starch bulbs and tubers. Fossorial “head-lift diggers,” they use their incisors and skull to loosen and shovel dirt. Lives in a complex burrow system including food storage and nest chambers. Long burrow passages are between 5-6 cm in diameter usually lying at depths between 10-40 cm, while nest and food storage chambers descend to depths of 50-70 cm. They are active day and night, but spend little time outside their burrows during the day. At night, however, they may range quite far from their burrows. Extremely timid, they may emit a bird-like chirp when frightened. Reproduction typically occurs between April and September. Males and females reach reproductive maturity at about 90 days. Gestation period is about 26 days, and females have their first litter at about five months of age and may have as many as 6-7 litters of between 3-4 or 5-7 depending on environmental conditions. Offspring remain in their underground nest until they are weaned at about 60 days of age. The interval between litters is between 34-36 days.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Drying of water sources and droughts threaten this species, although it remains unclear if these represent natural environmental changes or are driven by anthropogenic activity.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Approximately 11% of the species’ range in Mongolia occurs within protected areas. On the rest of the territory leasted as Least Concern. Conservation measures required. Further research is recommended.

Citation: Batsaikhan, N. & Tinnin, D. 2008. Ellobius tancrei. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T7657A12840997. . Downloaded on 10 October 2015.
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