Hokkaido red-backed vole

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Hokkaido red-backed vole
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Rodentia
Family: Cricetidae
Subfamily: Arvicolinae
Genus: Myodes
Species: M. rex
Binomial name
Myodes rex
(Imaizumi, 1971)

The Hokkaido red-backed vole (Myodes rex) is a species of rodent in the family Cricetidae. It is found at high altitudes on the island of Hokkaido in Japan and at lower altitudes on some smaller islands nearby. Its natural habitat is temperate forests.


The Hokkaido red-backed vole occurs in the southwestern part of Hokkaido in the Hidaka Mountains, Daisetsuzan Volcanic Group, Teshio Mountains, and Kitami Mountains, and Shiribeshi Province, Oshima Subprefecture and Hiyama Subprefecture. It is also present at lower altitudes on the islands of Rishiri and Rebun, as well as Shikotan in the Kuril Islands and Shibotsu in the Habomai Islands. It is found in forests and is an adaptable species.[1] Population genetic structuring is rather strong on Hokkaido, with different regions being characterised by different genetic lineages.[2]


Despite having a total area of occupancy of less than 20,000 square kilometres (7,700 sq mi) and being considered rare, the Hokkaido red-backed vole is listed as being of "least concern" by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. This is because the population seems stable, the vole faces no significant threats and it is present in some protected areas.[1]


  1. ^ a b c Abe, H.; Kaneko, Y. (2008). "Myodes rex". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2008. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 7 December 2014. Database entry includes a brief justification of why this species is of least concern.
  2. ^ Kawai, Kuniko; Hailer, Frank; Guia, Anna Pauline de; Ichikawa, Hideo; Saitoh, Takashi (2013). "Refugia in Glacial Ages Led to the Current Discontinuous Distribution Patterns of the Dark Red-backed Vole on Hokkaido, Japan" (PDF). Zoological Science. 30 (8): 642–650. doi:10.2108/zsj.30.642.