Spalax giganteus

Russian mole rat

Phylum Chordates (Chordata)
Class Mammals (Mammalia)
Order Rodents (Rodentia)
Family Mole rats (Spalacidae)
Genus Mole rats (Spalax)
Species Authority Nehring, 1898
Summary Status: rare (Category III), restricted to a narrow range and endemic to the Caspian Sea area, it is found only in the Commonwealth of Independent States countries. It inhabits areas with wet sands in Aktobe and the Uralsk regions of western Kazakstan. There are no available data on total population size; however, its average density in one region of western Kazakstan is 0.8 specimens per hectare over an area of some 10,000 hectares. Major limiting factors are agricultural development and climatic (severe winters and dry hot summers). Breeding and protection of this species have not been introduced. It is ne-cessary to establish a preserve in western Kazakstan and to conduct research.

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