These rodents are discovered in a wide range of habitats, from northern Europe within a broad band across a great deal of Asia, apart from the southeastern corner. Twenty-four species are identified but, as in the gerbils, only one particular – the Golden, or Syrian, Hamster (Mesocricetus auratus) – has turn into common as a pet all through the globe.
The Golden, or Syrian, Hamster
The Golden Hamster was initially discovered in 1839 and, forty years later, live specimens had been brought to England from Syria by James Skene, who had been serving there within the diplomatic service. This group appears to possess thrived for thirty years, with all the final progeny dying in 1910.
Subsequently, there appears to possess been none of those rodents in captivity till April, 1930. Certainly, it was recommended that the species was extinct, until Dr. Israel Aharoni found a nest of Syrian Hamsters on Mount Appo in Syria. The young hamsters were transferred to the Hebrew University at Jerusalem. The breeding program was not completely prosperous at first, due to the fact four from the eight hamsters escaped, and then a female died as a result of a fight using the only surviving male. From this unpromising starting, however, the male mated successfully with both the other females and, within a year, 3 hundred and sixty-four offspring had been reared.
A number of the progeny had been sent to Dr. Edward Hindle in England and, possibly by means of breeding stock in the London Zoo, Golden Hamsters became available for the pet-owning public. It was not till the commence with the Second World War that these hamsters had been observed alive in North America. It is remarkable to reflect that all such hamsters kept throughout the world currently are believed to be …Read more