(Last Updated On: April 15, 2021)

Campbell’s dwarf hamster, scientific name Phodopus campbelli is a species of hamster within the genus Phodopus. It was given its frequent name by Oldfield Thomas in honor of Charles William Campbell, who collected the first specimen in Mongolia on July 1, 1902.

Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster Profile

It is distinguished from the intently associated Djungarian hamster because it has smaller ears and no darkish fur on its crown. Campbell’s dwarf hamster usually has a slender dorsal stripe in comparison with the Djungarian hamster and gray fur on the abdomen. This hamster could also be raised in captivity and saved as a small pet.

The Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster inhabits the steppes of eastern and central Asia, digging burrows that can prolong as much as three feet underground.

These burrows are generally lined with scavenged sheep’s wool and dry grasses. The burrows preserve an average temperature of 62 degrees Fahrenheit. Natural predators embrace numerous owls, foxes, falcons, and weasels.

In the wild, the breeding season for Campbell’s dwarf hamster varies by location. For instance, the breeding season begins in direction of the center of April in Tuva and in direction of the end of April in Mongolia.

However, in captivity, there isn’t any mounted breeding season they usually can breed steadily all through the year. Females are often sexually mature at two months of age and the gestation interval is often 20 days.

Campbell's Dwarf Hamster

Campbell’s dwarf hamster is crepuscular, together with all species of Phodopus, and is lively all through the year. Campbell’s dwarf hamsters are omnivores, and so feed on each plant and bug materials.

Campbell’s dwarf hamster inhabits burrows with 4 to 6 horizontal and vertical tunnels within the steppes and semi-deserts of Central Asia, the Altai mountains, autonomous areas of Tuva, and the Hebei province in northeastern China.

Phodopus campbelli may be very small in size and the pelage is brief and silky. The underside of the animal is roofed in comfortable, buff, light gray fur and the dorsal parts, together with the top, are woody brown in color.

The underfur is kind of brief and is a darkish slate gray. An outlined charcoal stripe runs from between the ears to the tail. The pads of all digits, and the small tail, are lined in silky white fur.

Additionally, Campbell’s hamsters, like different members of the subfamily Cricetinae, possess giant inside cheek pouches that terminate above the scapula. Males are bigger than females.

Phodopus campbelli is commonly confused with Phodopus sungorus, Siberian hamsters. However, there are a number of bodily traits that distinguish the 2 species. The ears of Phodopus campbelli are typically smaller than these of Phodopus sungorus.

The mid-dorsal stripe of the Campbell’s hamster is each skinny and outlined and the realm the place the dorsal fur meets the ventral fur is a creamy light yellow. Moreover, the underfur of Phodopus campbelli is darkish gray, whereas that of Phodopus sungorus is white.

Documentations of region-dependent color variations have been collected from a number of populations of Phodopus campbelli native to the Chuisaya Steppes. Campbell’s hamsters from this space are barely greyer in color and possess a shorter mid-dorsal stripe.

Phodopus campbelli is usually categorized as a solitary species. However, in captivity, Phodopus campbelli reveals a high tolerance for different species members when sharing territory.

Campbell’s hamsters, like different members of the subfamily Cricetinae, are nocturnal. But captive specimens exhibit sporadic adherence to the cyclical sleep and wake patterns of untamed specimens.

Geographic Range

Originally recognized by O. Thomas in 1905, Phodopus campbelli, generally often called Campbell’s hamsters or Djungarian hamsters, is a local inhabitant of the steppes and deserts of interior Mongolia and northeastern China.

Heavily inhabited areas of Mongolia embrace, however will not be restricted to; the Altai Mountains, Transbaikalia, Nei Mongol, and Tuvinskaya (Tuva) Autonomous Region. Bordering territories in northern China, the Heilungkiang and Hebei provinces more particularly, additionally preserve dense populations of Phodopus campbelli.

Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster Description

The size of Campbell’s dwarf hamster varies relying on its location. For instance, eight wild specimens examined from Mongolia confirmed an average head and body size of 80 mm (3.1 in), an average hindfoot size of 13.5 mm (0.53 in) long, with a tail size of 5 mm (0.20 in).

In captivity, they’re proportionally bigger, as industrial pet meals and fruits present more vitamins than meals discovered generally within the wild. The lips and cheeks have white fur and the remainder of the fur across the face will be both gray or brown.

A darkish and slender dorsal stripe runs alongside the middle of the back from the nape of the neck to about 2.5 cm (0.98 in) above the tail. The floor of the palms and feet are white to make sure the animal stays heat in colder climates in nations corresponding to Mongolia.

Campbell’s dwarf hamster has cheek pouches, that are an extension of the mouth, extending from the mouth all the way in which to the rear legs. Food is transferred into these pouches by way of the diastema.

The within the pouch incorporates numerous folds of dermal papillae. When the pouch is full, it extends and turns into a part of the construction of the pores and skin.

By 11 days of age, the cheek pouches are absolutely grown and may carry objects as much as the size of a sunflower seed. When the cheek pouches develop into full, they prolong back to the shoulder blades, which limit motion.

Campbell's Dwarf Hamster

Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster Characteristics

Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster has an average life span of 18 – 24 months when raised in captivity.

They develop into sexually mature at solely 5 weeks and their litters often comprise 4 – 6 pups, that are born after a gestation interval of 18 – 21 days.

The pair might mate once more instantly after the start. Unlike different hamster species, particularly the Syrian hamsters, the male performs a lively function within the start and rearing the younger.

Male Syrian hamsters might help the feminine in pulling pups from the start canal, cleansing them, and guaranteeing the brand new mom has sufficient to eat. He might also guard them whereas the feminine is away from the nest.

Unlike Syrian hamsters, Campbell’s Dwarf Hamsters are sociable and could also be saved in colonies. If the hamsters are launched at a younger age, typically youthful than eight weeks, they are going to usually, fortunately, coexist in similar or combined female and male teams.

Note that mixed-sex teams ought to be prevented as hamsters are energetic breeders. Campbell’s Dwarf Hamsters are crepuscular, meaning that they’re most lively at daybreak and at nightfall.

Like all hamsters, Campbell’s Dwarf Hamsters are rodents and subsequently should gnaw usually to maintain the incisors from rising into the pores and skin of the mouth and inflicting health issues.

Some pet house owners might present dog biscuits to help with this. Wooden chew toys ought to be used with care as splinters might injure the hamster.

Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster Lifespan

Hamsters saved in captivity dwell for around 2.0–2.5 years. Young hamsters supplied broadly diversified diets early in life are much less more likely to endure digestive issues as they mature, but this isn’t at all times possible within the wild attributable to lack of meals; this causes the life expectancy of captive hamsters to be better than that of untamed hamsters.

Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster Communication

Of all of the senses, Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster depends totally on odor. Will Campbell’s hamsters, each female, and male make the most of urine and feces to determine territory.

Additionally, secretions originating from each of the ventral sebaceous glands and the Harderian glands, situated behind the animal’s ears, are utilized not just for territory identification, but in addition for communication.

The oral sebaceous glands of Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster additionally serve to mark the entire contents that enter or go away the animal’s cheek pouches.

Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster Habitat

Campbell’s dwarf hamsters inhabit burrows within the steppes and semideserts of central Asia, the Altai mountains, autonomous areas of Tuva, and the Hebei province in northeastern China.

A burrow can comprise 4 to 6 horizontal and vertical tunnels. The tunnels resulting in the nesting space will be as deep as 1 m (3 ft 3 in) under the ground, however are often 20–30 cm (7.9–11.eight in) deep.

The burrows are lined with both dry grass or sheep’s wool. They might typically share burrows with Daurian pikas, however solely within the steppes and semideserts of northern Manchuria.

In components of Mongolia, the hamsters might also share burrows with species of Meriones to save lots of them from digging their very own.

In Tuva, Campbell’s dwarf hamsters have been discovered dwelling with different hamsters, such because the Chinese striped hamster, the Roborovski hamster, and the long-tailed dwarf hamster.

The diets of the three sorts of hamsters are completely different to keep away from combating over the identical kind of meals, which is why they dwell collectively.

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Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster Colors

Campbell’s Dwarf Hamsters are born with one in all two coat sorts, satin, and rex. A hamster with a satin coat seems moist or greasy. In actuality, the gene solely enhances the fur’s color and offers it elevate. The rex coat kind is smooth, easy, and shiny and is discovered within the overwhelming majority of hamsters.

Campbell’s Dwarf Hamsters can be found in three primary colors plus many variations thereof. There can be a mottled gene that may end up in completely different markings.

Campbell's Dwarf Hamster

Basic Colours

agouti (the conventional wild color)

argente (cinnamon or sandy)

albino (white)

Not all white hamsters with red/pink eyes are albino. Some are so closely mottled or tinged with platinum that they are going to seem white. Furthermore, when two mottled hamsters are bred, roughly 25% of the litter can be ophthalmic whites, missing eyes, and teeth. This deadly mutation is the product of the interplay between already-mutated genes. These pups typically don’t dwell previous two months.

Marking sorts

mottled (additionally referred to as banded, noticed, or collared, if the mottling is confined to the neck)

platinum (typically referred to as pearl)

Interbreeding has produced new colors, together with blue, blue fawn, lilac fawn, and black. Contrary to popular perception, the completely different colors and markings of hamsters don’t point out personality variations. Personality will be predicted, although, by a detailed examination of the bloodline and any neurological illnesses its ancestors displayed.

Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster Diet

Almonds, celery, unwashed produce, garlic (very toxic to Hamsters), kidney beans, onion, potato tops, rhubarb, tomato, chocolate, cat meals, raisins.

As omnivores, Campbell’s dwarf hamsters eat a wide range of completely different meals. A balanced diet for a hamster consists of 16-24% protein, 60-65% carbohydrates, and 5–7% fats, with fixed entry to contemporary water. In their natural habitats, dwarf hamsters feed virtually completely on plant supplies.

In captivity, Campbell’s dwarf hamsters can get the required vitamin from commercially accessible meals designed particularly for hamsters, which usually comprise a mixture of dry grains, nuts, and seeds which may be fortified with nutritional vitamins and minerals.

An extra of any one specific seed or nut can result in digestive issues, weight problems, and types of dietary deficiency.

Campbell's Dwarf Hamster

Campbell’s Dwarf Hamster Breeding

In Tuva, the breeding season of Campbell’s dwarf hamster begins in April, and in Mongolia, it begins at the end of April or the start of May.

However, in all distribution ranges, it ends in late September or early October. In captivity, Campbell’s dwarf hamsters breed all through the year, with no mounted breeding season, however, a big quantity is born in the summertime months.

In the wild, three to 4 litters are produced every year, with an average of eight offspring per litter. In captivity, females can have between one and 18 litters per year, with one to 9 offspring per litter.

In captivity, the gestation interval for Campbell’s dwarf hamster is between 18 and 20 days, and the shortest gestation interval recorded for a captive feminine was 13 days.

The male hamster is more likely to help the feminine throughout the start. The male might pull the offspring from the start canal, clear them, or accumulate meals for the mom and offspring.

When the offspring are born, they’re hairless and have a body mass of roughly 1.5 g (0.053 oz). Incisors and claws are already fashioned, however, the digits, eyes, and pinnae are closed and can’t be used.

The price at which the younger develop differs relying on the distribution range. However, the variations are often now not than a day.

In Tuva, the pinnae open on the first day of start and are utterly open after three days of improvement. However, in Mongolia, the identical process happens between two and 4 days of improvement.

Fur first grows on the crown, back, and stomach. The younger often have a full coat of fur after seven days of improvement. Offspring born in captivity have a shorter improvement time than those born within the wild.

Specifically, the growth and improvement of the top and body, tail, hind feet, and pinnae will be as much as a day ahead of these discovered within the wild. After 28 days of improvement in captivity, the younger are already around half the mass of their parents.

At the start, Phodopus campbelli is utterly helpless and hairless. Incisors and small claws are present, however, the ears and eyes are each sealed. The younger rely upon parental funding, till weaned roughly 17 days after start.

Prior to a study printed in 2000 (Jones, 2000), it was broadly held that feminine hamsters have been primarily liable for the care of the younger. However, current proof means that male hamsters might help within the supply process by consuming each amniotic fluid, placenta, and fetal membrane.

In captivity, females develop into sexually mature at two months of age. The ovarian follicle types about 16 days previous to the start of the offspring.

After mating, feminine hamsters usually have bigger uteri, ovaries, and adrenal glands in comparison with females which dwell alone, with different females or people who haven’t mated.

The females and males might battle one another when attending to know their partner. Also, these females have a shorter gestation interval, around 4 to 5 days.

Campbell's Dwarf Hamster


This hamster is listed as of Least Concern by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). The inhabitants and distribution size is giant, and no main or widespread threats to the species are recognized.

However, because of the growing variety of livestock within the areas of distribution, such because the steppes of central Asia, some burrows are in small danger of being destroyed. In arid areas of distribution, the discount within the variety of water sources can be a minor concern. These hamsters are conserved in protected areas.

Other Names

hamster dwarf russian
phodopus campbelli
campbell hamster
campbell’s dwarf hamster lifespan
russian campbell dwarf hamster
russian campbell hamster

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