Sikkim mountain vole
|Sikkim mountain vole|
The Sikkim mountain vole has a head-and-body length of between 97 and 119 mm (3.82 and 4.69 in) and a tail length of 30 to 52 mm (1.18 to 2.05 in). The dorsal fur is dark brown, the underparts are dark grey and there is an intermediate strip of ochre-brown where the two colours meet. The upper surface of both fore and hind feet are brownish-white and the tail is bicoloured, being brown above and white below. The Sikkim mountain vole is very similar in appearance to the Chinese scrub vole (Neodon irene) although the two can be distinguished by examination of their teeth.
Distribution and habitat
The Sikkim mountain vole is native to parts of southeastern Asia. Its range extends from Bhutan, West Bengal and Sikkim in India, through western, central and eastern Nepal at altitudes above 2,500 m (8,200 ft), and it is also present in southern Tibet Autonomous Region at altitudes between 2,100 and 3,700 m (6,900 and 12,100 ft). Its typical habitat is Alpine meadows, rough herbage, forest edges and clearings.
The Sikkim mountain vole has a wide range and is assumed to have a large total population. It is present in several protected areas including Langtang National Park and Khangchendzonga National Park. The population trend is unknown, but the vole is threatened by the disappearance of areas of suitable habitat, by the arrival of invasive species and by the predation of domestic dogs and cats. The International Union for Conservation of Nature has assessed its conservation status as being of "least concern".
- Molur, S. (2008). Neodon sikimensis. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 10 Jule 2009. Database entry includes a brief justification of why this species is of least concern.
- Smith, Andrew T.; Xie, Yan; Hoffmann, Robert S.; Lunde, Darrin; MacKinnon, John; Wilson, Don E.; Wozencraft, W. Chris (2010). A Guide to the Mammals of China. Princeton University Press. p. 237. ISBN 1-4008-3411-2.
- 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.