British wildlife recordings
Muscardinus avellanarius : Common Dormouse - Gliridae
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Moorgate, London: OS Grid Reference(531500,181500)
Dormouse, Muscardinus avellanarius
The call of a dormouse recorded at Moorgate, London. This tiny rodent spends more than half of its life asleep, squeezed snugly into a nest made from a mixture of moss, leaves, grass and honeysuckle bark. Mainly found in the southern counties of England, they inhabit hedgerows and woodland, particularly coppiced woods and those containing patches of scrub. During the winter months dormice hibernate in an attempt to conserve energy at a time when food is less readily available. To prepare for hibernation, nuts become the most desirable food type due to the high energy content they offer. At other times, seeds, flowers, insects and fruit make up the staple diet. High pitched squeaks and teeth chattering are used to communicate. Loss of habitat has led to a significant decline in numbers, resulting in the dormouse becoming a specially protected species under the wildlife and Countryside Act.