Steppe Lemming


Overview of Lemmings

Lemmings are small rodents with very short tails, round bodies, and small heads. They generally live in or around the artic, and do not hibenate through winter. They are excellent burrowers but are not known for good abilities with climbing or jumping.

There are currently two main types of lemming in the pet trade, the Steppe Lemming (Lagurus lagurus) or the Mediterranean Lemming (Microtus Guentheri) also known as Gunthers Vole. Both species of pet lemming are strong burrowers and benefit from a deep layer of substrate, and various pipes and tubes. It is important to ensure that any nests have two exit points if you have multiple animals, to allow fights to be diffused easily. Care needs to be taken with their diet, as they are sugar intolerant.

The Steppe Lemming is more readily available and can easily be distinguished by the strong dorsal stripe along their back. The Steppe Lemming measure around 12cm with a tail of 2cm and an average adult would weigh around 30g. It has small eyes and ears and the coat colour is brownish grey with a prominent black dorsal stripe. The underside is an off-white colour.

The Mediterranean Lemming is somewhat larger and more round in shape than the Steppe with an average lifespan of between 2 years. They are a rich dark brown with a short stub of a tail. A typical adult would weigh in the region of 50g and measure around 14cm.