Special Issue "Advances in Diversity and Conservation of Terrestrial Small Mammals—2nd Edition"

A special issue of Diversity (ISSN 1424-2818). This special issue belongs to the section "Animal Diversity".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2024 | Viewed by 2070

Special Issue Editors

Faculty of Sciences, Lucian Blaga University of Sibiu, Bulevardul Victoriei 10, 550024 Sibiu, Romania
Interests: small mammals; population ecology; habitat selection; population dynamics; inter- and intraspecific competition; ecological statistics; multivariate analysis; fleas
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Laboratory of Mammalian Ecology, Nature Research Centre, Akademijos 2, 08412 Vilnius, Lithuania
Interests: hoofed, semi-aquatic, carnivore and small mammal ecology; threatened and invasive mammal species; large carnivores; spatial distribution; population management and computer modeling; biodiversity and ecological diversity
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Rodents (order Rodentia) represent the most diverse group of mammals, constituting about 40% of the extant species and being found in vast numbers on all continents (except Antarctica), inhabiting a great variety of environments. Together with insectivores (order Eulipotyphla and order Afrosoricida), rodents are key components of terrestrial ecosystems, where they have multiple functions, acting as seed and fungus dispersers, soil aerators and bioturbators, predators of insects and other invertebrates and, most importantly, as a food resource for most vertebrate predators. Resultantly, they exercise direct and indirect top-down and bottom-up control of the distribution, abundance and population dynamics of other animal taxa, as well as influencing vegetation structure. Intensification of anthropogenic habitat and climate alteration poses increased threat to the diversity of small mammals at all scales, resulting in impoverished assemblages dominated by generalist, sometimes invasive, species with limited functions in ecosystems, and therefore requiring efficient conservation measures and strategies.

This Special Issue invites research papers focusing on the diversity of terrestrial small mammals at various scales, from population (genetic diversity, mainly of rare or endemic species) to community (species richness and assemblage heterogeneity) and landscape (beta and gamma diversity) levels, and especially the relationships between the structural and functional diversity within this group. We also welcome new research and advances in small mammal conservation, papers presenting novel methods used to preserve threatened species and to enhance declining diversity at the various levels, as well as new policies and assessments of species’ threats and conservation statuses.

Dr. Ana Maria Benedek
Dr. Linas Balčiauskas
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Diversity is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • rodents
  • insectivores
  • species richness
  • alpha, beta and gamma diversity patterns
  • functional diversity
  • genetic diversity
  • climate change
  • habitat degradation
  • commensal habitats and adaptations
  • conservation biology
  • damage and pathogens
  • mitigation
  • red lists

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Published Papers (1 paper)

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14 pages, 2742 KiB  
Long-Term Stability of Harvest Mouse Population
Diversity 2023, 15(10), 1102; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15101102 - 23 Oct 2023
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The Eurasian harvest mouse (Micromys minutus) is a tiny rodent of the Palearctic and Indomalayan regions, with a distinct regional species status in Europe and irregularly varying local numbers. We analysed the population of M. minutus in Lithuania (Northern Europe) based [...] Read more.
The Eurasian harvest mouse (Micromys minutus) is a tiny rodent of the Palearctic and Indomalayan regions, with a distinct regional species status in Europe and irregularly varying local numbers. We analysed the population of M. minutus in Lithuania (Northern Europe) based on trapping data from 1975 to 2022 and owl pellet data from 1986 to 2009. Based on both datasets, the proportion of this species in the small mammal community was similar, 1.13% and 0.62%, respectively. The proportions have remained stable across all decades. Relative abundance was 1.19 ± 0.19 individuals per 1000 trap days, stable over the long term and across the country. Irregular fluctuations in abundance were observed in some of the sites surveyed. The highest average RA was recorded in open sedge habitats, meadows and marshes. The absolute highest RA was 88 individuals per 1000 trap days in floodplain meadows after a major flood. Although the negative impact of habitat anthropogenisation has been confirmed, M. minutus does not require special conservation measures in Lithuania. Full article
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