Woodland Vole (Microtus pinetorum)
Status in Canada: Special Concern
Status in Ontario: Special Concern
Status at SWCR: Common
This small chestnut-brown rodent has a short tails and is native to the Carolinian life zone.
- The SWCR is within the major part of its range: Southwestern Ontario close to lake Erie.
- It occupies a variety of habitats, ranging from deciduous forests, to orchards, and scrubby sand dunes.
- They live in small, communal groups.
- They live in deciduous forests and burrow within the deep litter layers on the forest floor.
Threats at the St. Williams Conservation Reserve:
Habitat loss/degradation: due to urban development, agriculture, and forest harvesting.
Activities that can damage critical woodland vole habitat include:
- Activities that eliminate patches of dense understory or reduce structural complexity on the forest floor: Natural succession and canopy closure, excessive deer browsing.
- Activities that interfere with understory shrubs, unauthorized plant collecting and off-trail ATV use.
- Vegetation management activities that can crush or destroy understory plants, such as prescribed burns.
St. Williams Conservation Reserve management practices:
- Population monitoring
- Forest thinning activities
- Enforcement of unauthorized trail use
What you can do to help:
- Follow the code of conduct for recreational activities in the Conservation Reserve and know and respect the current trail-use regulations.
- Report sightings to the SWCR CC, or the Natural Heritage Information Centre.
- Report unauthorized trail use or any illegal activity related to plants and wildlife to 1-877-TIPS-MNR (847-7667).