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  • Belongs to the dormice (Gliridae) family of rodents
  • Scientific Name: Eliomys quercinus

The garden dormouse is easily mistaken for some of its relatives in the dormouse family:  the edible dormice (Glis glis) and the hazel dormouse (Mascardinus avellanarius)


  • Distinctive black mask aroud the eyes (“dressed like a bandit”)
  • Reddish-brown to grey-coloured fur
  • White flanks and belly
  • Hairy tail with long-haired tassel at the end


  • Body length 12-17 cm
  • Tail length 10-14 cm


  • 60-90 g
  • Before hibernation: up to more than 130 g

© Rudi Leitl

The garden dormouse hibernates from October until April. (© Rudi Leitl)


  • They hibernate from October to April in tree hollows and rock crevices, but also in walls, buildings and caves
  • Garden dormice are almost exclusively nocturnal. They spend the day in spherical nests, which they build in tree hollows, crevasses or nest boxes, but also simply in bushes


  • After a gestation period of 21 to 23 days, the females give birth to 4 to 6 babies. This happens between May and July.
  • At an age of about 40 days, the juveniles become independent


  • In captivity up to 5 years, in freedom less    


  • Garden dormice are omnivores, with a preference for insects, spiders, worms, snails and eggs as well as fruits, seeds and buds