The Field Mouse is a generic term for a range of mice in the UK. The true field mouse is the Long Tailed Field Mouse, or Wood Mouse and it is one of our most endearing / or terrifying animals depending on your point of view. It does provide a vital food source for many of the UK’s carnivorous creatures as well as being a major pest.
Characteristics: As shown in the above pictures, they have a dark brown fur with enormous eyes and ears for their size. They grow to about 10cm long and weigh 30 grams or so full grown.
Habitat: The wood mouse will live just about anywhere there is food and shelter. It traditionally roams hedgerows, fields, forests and grass lands where it can find plenty of food. They are omnivorous and will eat a range of seeds, berries, invertebrates, worms, carrion and other similar food. It tends to have a short life in the wild as so many different creatures prey on them, an average age between 6 and 12 months, however they live longer in captivity and when conditions are favourable.
Reproduction: They can reproduce quite frequently with the gestation period around 25 days, and they give birth to between 4 and 7 mice which are soon out on their own after about 4 weeks, This short parenthood period means that field mice can reproduce several times per year.
Nesting: They nest wherever there is cover and warmth, this is usually below ground however they can also be found in hedgerows, buildings, car radiators and other similar dwellings.
Movements: They are generally nocturnal animals with superb hearing and vision (hence the large eyes and ears), because of this they are a vital source of food for other larger nocturnal hunters such as owls.