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Bükk Mammalogical Soc





Eötvös University

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Ongoing programmes of the Project :


1) Sicista Conservation Programme: habitat management in the Borsodi Mezőség Landscape Protected Area (BMLPA)

The management of the only known habitat of S. subtilis trizona involves many responsibilities.

    Determination and implementation of the best practice, which maintains the habitat are attempted in cooperation of Bükk National Park. The conservational plan of BMLPA is ready and it attends highly to the management of the habitat of the mouse.

    Grazing and mowing permissions has already been given out in 2009 by the nature protection authority, including directions regulated to the requirements of the species. It forbids the mowing on 400 ha of the known birch mouse habitats.


2) Southern Birch Mouse Monitoring

Within the frame of this programme, the range of the birch mouse is refined and the fluctuation in population density is traced.

To achieve these aims we trap periodical the small vertebrates with pitfalls and box traps in fixed quadrants and casual samplings are also achieved in potential habitats.


3) Sicista molecular taxonomy

Using mitochondrial and nuclear markers, we try to phyogenetically characterise the Hungarian population, as there are several morphological traits that suggest a taxonomical distinctiveness of trizona population. For this work, we designed a new primer-pair that can be used to PCR-amplify a 1.6 kb region of the cytochrome-B region, which is phylogenetically highly informative.


Cserkész T., Aczél-Fridrich Zs, Hegyeli Zs, Sugár Sz, Czabán D, Horváth O, Sramkó G. 2014.Rediscovery of the Hungarian birch mouse (Sicista subtilis trizona) in Transylvania (Romania) with molecular characterisation of its phylogenetic affinities. MAMMALIA 78:(3) 10.1515/mammalia-2013-0167. 10 p. (pdf)


Cserkész T., Rusin, M., Sramkó G. An integrative systematic revision of the European southern birch mice (Rodentia: Sminthidae, Sicista subtilis group). Mammal Review 46: (2016) (abstract)


4) Birch mouse ethology



5) Morphometry

    The primary aim of this study was to find new localities of S. subtilis in Hungary and Poland and to verify their specific assignation.  We studied the morphometry of these isolated  population comparing of these skulls with samples from other European populations of subtilis and betulina species groups – especially with the “core” Ukrainian S. subtilis nordmanni. Based on these results further taxonomical conclusions can be drawn.


Cserkész T., Kitowski, I., Czochra, K. & Rusin, M. 2009. Distribution of the Southern birch mouse (Sicista subtilis) in East-Poland. Morphometric variations in discrete European populations of superspecies S. subtilis. Mammalia 73 (3): 221-229.(pdf)


6) Radio telemetry

The home range and the habitat preference of the birch mice are determined besides the mapping of resting and nesting places. Forward>>>


7) Education and Public Awareness Programme



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 © Photos: Cserkész Tamás; Contact: info 'at'   Last update: 2016. január 02., 10.20:59 +0100