Chinese striped hamster facts for kids
|Chinese striped hamster|
The Chinese striped hamster (Cricetulus barabensis), also known as the striped dwarf hamster, is a species of hamster. It is distributed across northern Asia, from southern Siberia through Mongolia and northeastern China to northern North Korea. ORIGIN The Chinese Hamster originates in North-Eastern China. They were first domesticated around 1919, and were used originally as a laboratory animal. In the latter half of last century interest increased in the Chinese Hamster as a pet and show animal. It is, however, still not as common as other hamster species in pet shops.
DESCRIPTION The Chinese Hamster looks very like a mouse without the long tail. They are long and slender, with a short prehensile tail, large dark eyes, and tulip shaped ears. It is part of a group of 6 species classified as “rat-like” hamsters. An adult Chinese Hamster is about 4 inches (10-12cm) long and weighs up to about 45-50g.
There are only two colours that are regularly seen in Chinese Hamsters, the Normal and the Dominant Spot. A third colour, Black-eyed White, occurs randomly and very rarely within litters with two Dominant Spot parents.
The Normal is the wild coloration and is a rich mahogany brown with black ticking on the upper two thirds of the body. From under the cheekbone in a straight line from the cheek to the tail, and under the stomach and legs the Normal is white with a grey undercoat. The Normal has a black stripe running from the forehead along the spine to the tail.
The Dominant Spot is a very attractive animal. The base colour is white with patches of the Normal colour scattered (ideally in an even pattern in a show animal) across the upper part of the body. There is often a concentration of brown colour along the spine. The Dominant Spot also has the black stripe from the forehead down the spine to the tail.
Chinese striped hamster Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.