Fur tawny brown on the upper parts; beneath white: ears one-third the length of the head.
M. messorius, Desm. Mammal, p. 302. Flem. Brit. An. p. 19. Harvest Mouse, Shaw, Gen. Zool. vol. n. p. 62. Fig. on Frontisp.
Length of the head and body two inches six lines; of the head ten lines; of the ears three lines; of the tail two inches six lines.
Much smaller than the last species, and of a more elongated form: head narrower in proportion: eyes and ears smaller, the latter barely one-third the length of the head, with the projecting lobe at the base of the posterior margin relatively larger: tail varying in length, equalling the body, or somewhat shorter. Fur above of a bright tawny red colour, with a tinge of brown, the basal half of each hair being dusky, and the upper portion red; beneath almost pure white, the hair being of one tint throughout its whole length; a distinct line of separation between the above colours running parallel with the sides.
First found in Hampshire by White. Since met with in Wiltshire, Devonshire, Cambridgeshire, and other parts of the country. Frequents cornfields during the harvest. Nest round, composed of dry straws and grasses, and suspended at a small height from the ground. Produces seven or eight at a litter.