A Population Study of the Prairie Vole (Microtus Ochrogaster) in Northeastern Kansas

A Population Study of the Prairie Vole (Microtus Ochrogaster) in Northeastern Kansas

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Excerpt: ...in older individuals but most of it was due to the failure of voles born in the spring to continue growing. No data on the growth rate of M. ochrogaster were found in the literature. According to the somewhat scanty data from my study, secured from observations of individuals born in the laboratory, young voles gained approximately 0.6 of a gram per day for the first ten days, approximately one gram per day up to an age of one month, and approximately 0.5 of a gram per day from an age of one month until growth ceases. This growth rate was especially variable after the voles reached an age of thirty days. The growth rate approximates those described for M. pennsylvanicus (Hamilton, 1941:12) and for M. californicus (Hatfield, 1935:269; Selle, 1928:97). Although the data were inadequate for a definite statement, I gained the impression that there was no difference between the sexes in growth rate. In general, young voles grow most rapidly in the April-May-June period and least rapidly in mid-winter. Several voles, born in late autumn, stopped growing while still far short of adult size and lived through the winter without gaining weight, then gained as much as 30 per cent after spring arrived (Fig. 12 ). Fig. 12. Growth rates of two voles selected to show typical growth pattern of voles born late in the year. Growth nearly stops in winter and is resumed in spring. The recorded life spans of most voles studied were less than one year. No accurate mean life span could be determined. Leslie and Ransom (1940:46), Hamilton (1937a:506) and Fisher (1945:436) also found that most voles lived less than one year. Leslie and Ransom (op. cit.: 47) reported a mean life span of 237.59 10.884 days in voles of a laboratory population. In the present study one female was trapped 624 days after first being captured; another female was trapped 617 days after first being captured; and a male was trapped 611 days after first being captured. The two females were...show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 28 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 2mm | 68g
  • Rarebooksclub.com
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236722353
  • 9781236722355