Rock vole

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Rock vole
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Rodentia
Family: Cricetidae
Subfamily: Arvicolinae
Genus: Microtus
M. chrotorrhinus
Binomial name
Microtus chrotorrhinus
(Miller, 1894)
Microtus chrotorrhinus map.svg

The rock vole (Microtus chrotorrhinus) is a medium-sized vole found in eastern North America. It is also called the yellow-nosed vole.

This species is similar in appearance to the larger Taiga vole. It has short ears and a long tail which is paler underneath. The fur is greyish-brown with grey underparts and a yellowish nose. Its length averages 15 cm (5.9 in) long with a 5-cm tail, and it weighs about 39 g (1.4 oz).

They are found on moist rocky slopes in eastern Canada and the northeastern United States. They make runways through the surface growth and shallow burrows. They are usually found in small colonies.

They feed on grasses, mosses, underground fungi and berries (especially bunchberry), and also sometimes on caterpillars. Predators include hawks, owls, snakes and small carnivorous mammals.

The female vole has two or three litters of four to seven young. They are active year-round, mainly during the day, but are rarely seen. It has been designated as a species of concern in some parts of its range.


  1. ^ Linzey, A.V.; NatureServe; Hammerson, G.; Whittaker, J.C. & Norris, S.J. (2008). "Microtus chrotorrhinus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2008. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 11 June 2009. Database entry includes a brief justification of why this species is of least concern.