Bank Vole (Clethrionomys glareolus

c_Darin_SmithBank Vole © Darin Smith


The Bank Vole is a small rodent that has red-brown fur with grey patches and has a tail that is about half as long as its body. It has distinctive small ears and small black eyes. It lives in areas of woodland, hedgerows, parks and gardens and unlike other small mammals Bank Voles are active throughout the year and are good swimmers.  Bank Voles can have three or four litters a year, each with up to seven pups. The pups are born underground in burrows, which they can easily escape from if disturbed by a predator.


Bank voles usually eat fruits, nuts, bark and seeds but occasionally will eat small insects and small invertebrates.

How to track/identify?

Bank Voles travel along well-known routes in the undergrowth to avoid predators. The Bank Vole is a highly active animal it is spotted frequently, especially around bird tables. You are more likely to see them at the peaks of each season.

Did you know?

  • During the winter Bank Voles have ‘larders’ which store their food for the winter.
  • The Bank Vole only lives up to 2 years old.
  • The pups are sexually active at 4 ½ weeks old.
  • Mothers are very protective of their young and will carry back any that try to escape.

Reserves where they are present

Found throughout lowland Wiltshire in areas of scrubland and hedgerows.

Others in the Mammal Family

American MinkBank VoleBadger, Brown HareGrey Squirrel, Hazel DormouseHedgehogHouse MouseOtterRabbitRed FoxWeaselWild Boar

Print a copy of the Bank Vole fact sheet

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