African Pygmy Mice make fascinating, low maintenance pets to watch although they cannot be handled. Babies are born grey and change colour as they grow. The danger signs are quite obvious, especially with males where there is excessive chasing, fighting and one dormouse may be pinned with the other holding it down. Change all bedding and clean all nests and alter the layout for them. In my personal experience I have found that it can be difficult to integrate family groups - I have found that the young and adolescents may be accepted but not the adults. One interesting characteristic of the African Pygmy Mouse is that unlike most mammals, it is the X chromosome that determines its sex, not the Y.
This is done on neutral territory. The danger signs are quite obvious, especially with males where there is excessive chasing, fighting and one dormouse may be pinned with the other holding it down. Distracting food treats things like live crickets or millet sprays. Some dormice personalities may not match, and I've had girls before that will not accept any other females other than her own daughters. In the centre of the genital vents the female has a dot and the male has a more button-shape - similar to Guinea Pigs. Care must be taken as a startled African Pygmy Mouse can jump around 18 inches. Spray a strong scent such as lavender, vanilla or diluted washing up liquid with a lemon scent around the enclosure. Keep a close eye on your colony so you should be aware if you need to separate your animals. They live around 2 years, although in captivity upto 4 years has been recorded. The space between the genital and anal openings is greater in the male than the female. Keeping African Pygmy Mice as a pet is fairly simple although the initial cost of their tank and equipment may be high. Due to their tiny stature and speed, they are not a species that can be handled as it would be far too easy to damage them accidentally. They live in colonies in the wild and so must be kept with company. Male Things to help the introduction include: Although they are nocturnal, in a comfortable environment they can be observed at odd moments during the day. The best method in sexing pygmy dormice is to place pups in a see through jar or container that they cannot escape from. Try rubbing a menthol vapour on the dormice and the newly cleaned enclosure - paying particular attention to the genital region to help disguise scent and reduce the fighting instinct. In my personal experience I have found that it can be difficult to integrate family groups - I have found that the young and adolescents may be accepted but not the adults. Overview African Pygmy Mice are one of the smallest rodents and mammals in the world. African Pygmy Mice make fascinating, low maintenance pets to watch although they cannot be handled. Introducing new Dormice To prevent inbreeding, it is important to introduce new blood in the colony. Their tiny size can only really be appreciated first-hand. Female dormice have prominant nipples if pregnant or lactating, blowing on belly fur may help reveal this for young dormice. One interesting characteristic of the African Pygmy Mouse is that unlike most mammals, it is the X chromosome that determines its sex, not the Y. Your new Dormice may nest alone for a few nights, but this is normal. Always make sure you have a spare, secure tank or vivarium so you are prepared for dormouse territory disputes. My colonies have favoured the late evening, and although they can be startled by sudden movement they do not seem alarmed by sounds.
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