How to tell a dormouse shell

Gnawed nutshells can tell you if the secretive Dormouse is on your local patch. But it’s easy to confuse the signs of Woodmouse and Dormouse.

My photo of nibbled hazel nuts shows how to tell them apart: LEFT – the toothmarks of woodmice point into the hole, leaving a rough edge. RIGHT – dormice scrape a smooth hole into the side of the shell.

Left, opened by a woodmouse: right, opened by a dormouse.

Left, opened by a woodmouse: right, opened by a dormouse.

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4 Responses to “How to tell a dormouse shell”

  1. Dormouse box « the Natureheads blog Says:

    […] hazel nut shells, which are nibbled in a very particular way if a dormouse has eaten it! (See a photo… […]

  2. Darren E Williams Says:

    This is an excellent post . . . please can I propogate it on my own blog? – Gloing Green – cloudfree-horizons.co.uk, I have readers who saved a whole section of hedrow from being cut down due to evidence of Dormice . . .IN Culverstone, Kent, if not okay, I will link to your site.

  3. natureheads Says:

    Yes, please reblog / propogate – so long as you credit me and link back here. Thanks, and all the best with your dormice!

  4. Anthony Lewis Says:

    I’m writing a small piece on dormice for a newsletter I edit for the Friends of the Tamar Valley and I was hoping to be able to use your photograph above to illustrate how tell a nut gnawed by a dormouse. Would this be okay? Many thanks.

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