Garden Sonya from the Red Book description, photos and interesting facts

Sonya Garden (lat. Eliomys quercinus) a small and fairly pretty mammal of the rodent detachment. Unlike forest relatives, can settle not only in oakpers, but also old gardens. She received her nickname due to the fact that already at the end of autumn, gaining weight and preparing reserves for the winter, Sonya hibernates.

Once widespread, today this rodent from the family of synkes falls into the category of disappearing species, listed in the international red book and is protected. Despite the fact that over the past few decades, the number of animals has decreased significantly, especially in the eastern habitats, they are still considered pests, and in some areas they simply eat in food.


The body weight of garden sonya ranges from fortyfive to one hundred and forty grams. The average body length is 10-17 cm, and almost the same size fluffy tail with a brush at the end. Muzzle pointed, with large eyes and ears.

The wool is short, soft and fluffy painted in gray or brown. Abdomen, neck, chest and paws, usually white or pale pink. A black strip comes from the eyes and behind the ears, which gives them the appearance of a real thief, at the same time being a distinctive feature of garden son.

Handing and habits

If we talk about the global population of garden son, then their habitat is the central, southwestern part of the European continent, the central and southern regions of Africa and Maly Asia.

They usually settle in deciduous forests and gardens, equipping their spherical houses in thick branches, hollows, or abandoned nests.

Before the onset of cold weather, shelters for hibernation in burrows between the roots of the trees, taking care of the safety of heat in the winter period. For autumn, they gain weight 2-3 times higher than the norm, thus accumulating the fat necessary to survive the period of prolonged sleep.


Sadovy Sonya omnivorous. They usually sleep in the afternoon, and with the onset of twilight they go hunting. The main diet of their nutrition is food, animal origin. Even with an abundance of various fruits and berries, after a week of staying in a vegetarian diet they can fall into a stupor. Some scientists noted the facts of cannibalism immediately after leaving the hibernation. But let’s in order.

Diet, naturally depends on the habitat. Sony living in gardens do not disdain anything. They enjoy the apples, pears, peaches, grapes and even cherries. Once in the room where the household supplies are stored, bread, cheese and milk and cereals that are in the access zone are happy.

However, fruits are sweet. The main diet is beetles, larvae, butterflies, spiders, centipedes, worms, snails. They can enjoy eggs as a delicacy.

Sony great hunters with instant reaction. Therefore, their prey is not rarely becoming small vertebrates, including field mice and birds.

Garden Sonya from the Red Book description, photos and interesting facts

Before the hibernation, the animals are not made in hibernation, with the exception of rare cases.


The propagation period of garden son begins immediately, after awakening from hibernation. Males begin to run around the neighborhood, leave tags and sniff out traces of females ready to mate. Despite the night lifestyle, the instinct of continuation of the genus encourages Sonya actively looking for a couple even during the day.

Females call males with a whistle. Males respond with a kind of muttering, resembling the sounds of a boiling teapot. Cases of jealousy are not rare when the boyfriends fight for the right to possess a lady of the heart.

Couples are formed for only a few days, then the female leaves the father of her offspring and begins to equip her nest, often not one. Pregnancy lasts 23 days, after which 4-6 small blind cubs are born. After three weeks, they open their eyes, and at the age of month they begin to eat on their own. At first, the brood moves the group. After two months, the female leaves the cubs, who still live together for some time, and then scream.

Number protection

The main reason for a decrease in the number of garden son populations is a reduction in the habitat deforestation, stripping hollow trees. An important factor is the fight against rodents, under the millstone of which not only mass pests fall, but also rare species.

Entered in the Red Book, Data MSOP and Appendix III of the Berne Convention.

In addition, special measures to protect and increase the population are not taken.

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