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Tamias sibiricus - Siberian chipmunk

French name:  Ecureuil de corée
Dutch name: Aziatische grondeekhoorn
Family: Sciuridae
Group: Mammals
Origin: Asia
Habitat: terrestrial
Introduction:  pets and domestic animals
ISEIA Score : 9
Naturalization in Belgium
First observation in the wild: 1969
Invasion stage: spread
Spatial distribution: isolated
Reproduction in the wild: yes
Dispersion potential: medium
Natural habitats: high
More on invasiveness: The Siberian chipmunk lives in woodlands, parks and gardens. Deep soils and the presence of stumps are important for the establishment of their burrow. Adults are extremely sedentary; male home range is about 1 ha.
Distribution in Belgium
Established populations
absent from district
isolated populations (1-5 localities per district)
widespread (>5 localities per district)

Impacts on Species
Predation / Herbivory: likely
Competition: likely
Disease transmission: likely
Genetic effects: low
Impacts on Ecosystems
Nutrient cycling: low
Physical alteration: low
Natural successions: low
Food web alteration: likely
More on impacts: A potential impact of the Siberian chipmunk to ground nesting birds has been suggested. In native range, it influences both the breeding success and nest site selection of the dusky warbler Phylloscopus fuscatus. However, in Belgium, no formal evidence was found from monitoring studies (Riegel et al. 2001). It is also suspected to compete directly (trophic availability) or indirectly (parasitic transmission) with native forest rodents, mainly Sciurus vulgaris, Apodemus sylvaticus and Clethrionomys glareolus. In suburban forests, it could contribute to increased Lyme disease transmission risk.
Data Source & References
Authors: Branquart Etienne, D'aes Margo, Manet Benoît, Motte Grégory, Schockert Vinciane, Stuyck Jan
Published on:  12 June 2007
Last update:  13 March 2009
Amori, G. & Gippoliti, S. (1995)
Siberian chipmunk Tamias sibiricus in Italy.
Mammalia 59 (2) : 288-289.
Bertolino, S & Genovesi, P. (2005)
The application of the European strategy on invasive alien species: an example with introduced squirrels.
Hystrix It. J. Mamm. (n.s.) 16 (1): 59-69
Bertolino,S., Currado, I., Mazzolgio, P.J. & Amori, G. (2000)
Native and alien squirrels in Italy.
Hystrix 11(2): 65-74.
Boyer, N., Réale, D., Marmet, J., Pisanu, B. & Chapuis, J.L. (2010)
Personality, space use and tick load in an introduced population of Siberian chipmunks Tamias sibiricus.
Journal of Animal Ecology 79, 538–547
Chapuis, J.L. (2005)
Distribution in France of a naturalized pet, the Siberian Chipmunk (Tamias sibiricus).
Revue d’ecologie-la terre et la vie 60 (3): 239-253.
Chapuis, J.L. & Marmet, J. (2006)
Ecureuils d'Europe occidentale: fiches descriptives.
Museum d'Histoire Naturelle, Paris.
Dijkstra, V. & Dekker, J. (2008)
Risico-assessment uitheemse eekhoorns.
Rapport van de Zoogdiervereniging VZZ in opdracht van Commissie Invasieve Exoten.
Forstmeier, W. & Weiss, I. (2004)
Adaptive plasticity in nest-site selection in response to changing predation risk.
Oikos 104: 487-499.
Forstmeier, W. & Weiss, I. (2002)
Effects of nest predation in the Siberian chipmunk Tamias sibiricus on success of the dusky warbler Phylloscopus fuscatus breeding.
Zoologičeskij žurnal 81: 1367-1370.
Geinitz, C . (1980)
Beiträge zur Biologie des Streifenhörnchens (Eutamias sibiricus Laxmann, 1769) auf einem Friedhof in Freiburg (Süddeutschland).
Zeitschrift für Säugetierkunde 45(5): 279-287.
Libois, R. (2006)
Les mammifères non volants de la région wallonne : tendances des populations.
Dossier scientifique réalisé dans le cadre de l'élaboration du Rapport analytique 2006 sur l'Etat de l'Environnement wallon, Unité de Recherches zoogéographiques, Université de Liège, 127 pp.
Marmet, J., Pisanu, B. & Chapuis, J.L. (2011)
Natal dispersal of introduced Siberian chipmunks, Tamias sibiricus, in a suburban forest.
Journal of Ethology 29:23–29
Mitchell-Jones, A. J., Amori, G., Bogdanowicz, W., Kryštufek, B., Reijnders, P. J. H., Spitzenberger, F., Stubbe, M., Thissen, J. B. M., Vohralík, V. & Zima, J. (1999)
The Atlas of European Mammals.
Poyser, London.
Pisanu, B., Marsot, M., Marmet, J., Chapuis, J.-L., Réale, D. & Vourc’h, G. (2010)
Introduced Siberian chipmunks are more heavily infested by ixodid ticks than are native bank voles in a suburban forest in France.
International Journal for Parasitology 40 (11): 1277-1283.
Riegel, J, Lafontaine, R-M, Pasteels, J & Devillers, P. (2000)
Influence potentielle du Tamia de Sibérie Tamias sibiricus (Laxmann) sur la régression de l’avifaune en Forêt de Soignes.
Cahiers d’Ethologie 20(1): 45-62.
Tillon, L., Joicey, J. & Chapuis, J.L. (2007)
Les écureuils introduits en France et en Europe occidentale.
In 13ème Forum des gestionnaires: espèces exotiques envahissantes, une menace majeure pour la biodiversité.
Van den Broeke, E. (1999)
Populatiedynamiek van een geïntroduceerde soort: de grondeekhoorn in het Zoniënwoud.
Dissertation, VUB, Brussel.
Verbeylen, G. (2003)
Beverrat, Noord-Amerikaanse grijze eekhoorn, Aziatische grondeekhoorn.
In: S. Verkem et al. (eds), Zoogdieren in Vlaanderen, Natuurpunt Studie & JNM-Zoogdierenwerkgroep.
Verbeylen, G. & Matthysen, E. (1998)
Inventarisatie van de Aziatische grondeekhoorn in De Panne.
Rapport September-November 1998, Een project van de UIA groep Dierenecologie in opdracht van AMINAL afdeling Natuur, UIA, Antwerpen.
Vourc’h, G., Marmet, J., Chassagne, M., Bord, S. & Chapuis, J.L. (2007)
Borrelia burgdorferi sl in an introduced population of Siberian chipmunks (Tamias sibiricus) in a French suburban forest.
Vector-borne and zoonotic diseases 7: 637-641.
Wittenberg, R. (2005)
An inventory of alien species and their threat to biodiversity and economy in Switzerland.
CABI Bioscience Switzerland Centre report to the Swiss Agency for Environment, Forests and Landscape. The environment in practice no. 0629: 155p.
de Keyser, B. (1983)
L'écureuil de Corée, Eutamias sibiricus, Laxmann (Rodentia, Sciuridae) en forêt de Soignes.
Les Naturalistes Belges 64: 15-20.

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