Laboratory Mouse Natural History
From nose to the tip of its tail this species is around 10 cm long.
Habitat and Distribution
This mouse does not have a natural distribution because it is a hybrid between 2 subspecies of the common house mouse (Mus musculus domesticus x Mus musculus musculus).
The average lifespan of this mouse is 2 to 3 years however there is an event called the Methuselah Mouse Prize for extraordinarily long living mice. The current record is for a genetically engineered laboratory mouse which lived for 5 years.
This animal lives on a variety of fruits, seeds and nuts, but due to its captive life is generally fed on a commercially produced substitute of their natural diet.
Groups and Breeding
Once mating has occurred, the female will have a gestation of 19 to 24 days after which she can give birth to anything between 3 and 14 young). It is not uncommon for a female to be able to give birth to 10 litters per year.
This species has no threats.
These mice were original selectively bred over a number of generations to result in all of them having essentially the same genetic structure making them perfect for laboratory work. They are so popular in laboratories due to a mixture of their ease of care, prolific breeding and their physiological and genetic similarities to humans.
The Laboratory Mice During Your Day Out in Kent
Laboratory mice at Wingham Wildlife Park can be seen in our pet village off of the reptile house. This is also home to domesticated rabbit, guinea pigs, rats, Luzon cloud rats and chipmunks.