The word dormouse comes from the French word 'dormir' - to sleep. The dormouse is one of the most attractive of Britain's small mammals.



Dormice usually have one, sometimes two, litters a year, between May and September. There are about 4 young, born blind and naked. They soon grow grey fur, but by the time they leave the nest at 4 weeks old they are almost the colour of the adults. The breeding rate depends very much on the weather. In a year when food is scarce or when bad weather has prolonged hibernation or restricted the dormouse's feeding time, most litters may not be produced until August, September or even October. In these cases, the young dormice may not be able to build up enough fat to survive the winter.

Read More: Dormouse Habits

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