Brandt's Vole Environment
Despite their small size, voles are very active little animals and as such require a spacious habitat to exhibit their full range of natural behaviours, and avoid squabbles: as colonial animals they must live groups but can fight viciously if kept in unsuitable housing. A suggested minimum enclosure size for a trio would be a metre by half a metre.
They are not good climbers and would naturally live a wholly terrestrial lifestyle, so levels are not appropriate. Loose substrate, such as Megazorb or Carefresh, should be used and at least several inches deep to enable them to burrow. Dusty or sharp options such as wood shavings ought to be avoided as they can lead to eye injuries or respiratory problems.
Nesting material like shredded tissue or paper is appreciated; all members of the group will contribute to nest construction. As enrichment, running wheels can be given but multiple should be provided to prevent arguments, and tunnels and branches for gnawing are required as the voles’ teeth grow constantly and require wearing down to prevent health issues; this also means nothing should be put into a vole enclosure unless if it is alright to be chewed! ‘Good’ materials for enrichment items include rodent-safe woods and seagrass.