Don’t move: To ensure constant food supply edible dormice rather give up their favourite food

Rodents such as the edible dormouse feed preferably on high-energy seeds. They deliver the energy needed for reproduction and putting on necessary fat reserves. Beech trees, however, save energy by producing seeds only in certain years and on a large scale. Edible dormice adapt to this cycle with a pragmatic choice of territory. A long-term study by researchers from Vetmeduni Vienna has now shown for the first time that edible dormice avoid areas with a high beech density. Instead, they prefer areas with a balanced mix of conifers and beech trees allowing the rodents to survive non-mast years without having to move to a new territory. The results were published in Frontiers in Zoology. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)