From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Water voles
Temporal range: Early Pleistocene - Recent
Arvicola terrestris.jpg
Arvicola amphibius
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Rodentia
Family: Cricetidae
Tribe: Arvicolini
Genus: Arvicola
Lacépède, 1799

Arvicola amphibius
Arvicola sapidus
Arvicola scherman
Arvicola jacobeus

The water voles are large voles in the genus Arvicola. They are found in both aquatic and dry habitat through Europe and much of northern Asia. A water vole found in Western North America was historically considered a member of this genus, but has been shown to be more closely related to members of the genus Microtus.[1][2] Head and body lengths are 12–22 cm, tail lengths are 6.5–12.5 cm, and their weights are 70–250 g. The animals may exhibit indeterminate growth. They are thick-furred and have hairy fringes on their feet that improve their swimming ability.



  1. ^ Conroy, C. J. and J. A. Cook. 2000. Molecular systematics of a Holarctic rodent (Microtus: Muridae). Journal of Mammalogy, 81:344-359.
  2. ^ Musser, G. G. and M. D. Carleton. 2005. Superfamily Muroidea. pp. 894–1531 in Mammal Species of the World a Taxonomic and Geographic Reference. D. E. Wilson and D. M. Reeder eds. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore.

Further reading[edit]

  • Nowak, R. M. 1999. Walker's Mammals of the World, Vol. 2. Johns Hopkins University Press, London.
  • Townsend, C., Begon, M. and Harper, J.L. 2003. Essentials of Ecology: second edition. Blackwell Publishing, Oxford.