Where Do Gerbils Live? A Guide to Wild Gerbil Habitats

Gerbils are found in various parts of the world, including Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America. They are commonly found in arid and semi-arid regions such as deserts, steppes, and rocky fields. They have adapted to life in these harsh environments and have developed unique characteristics that help them survive in these areas.

Gerbil Natural Habitats

Gerbils have a wide range of natural habitats, including sandy deserts, rocky outcrops, and grassy plains. They are burrowing animals and create elaborate underground tunnels and chambers that protect them from predators and provide shelter from the heat. These tunnels also serve as storage for food, water, and nesting materials.

Gerbil Physical Characteristics

Gerbils have several physical characteristics that make them well-suited to their natural habitats. They have long, powerful hind legs that allow them to jump and run quickly over sandy and rocky terrain. They also have sharp claws that help them dig tunnels and burrows. Their thick, soft fur helps them stay warm in the cold desert nights and reflects sunlight during the day.

Gerbil Habitats Around the World

Gerbils in Asia

Asia is home to several species of gerbils, including the Mongolian gerbil, the Indian gerbil, and the fat-tailed gerbil. The Mongolian gerbil is the most widely known species and is commonly kept as a pet. It is found in the Gobi and Taklamakan deserts and can survive in temperatures ranging from -20°C to 40°C.

Gerbils in Africa

Africa is home to several species of gerbils, including the sand gerbil, the lesser Egyptian gerbil, and the greater Egyptian gerbil. The sand gerbil is found in the Sahara and Namib deserts and can survive in temperatures up to 50°C. The lesser and greater Egyptian gerbils are found in the Sahara desert and can survive in temperatures up to 45°C.

Gerbils in Europe

Europe is home to only one species of gerbil, the Libyan jird. It is found in the deserts of North Africa and can survive in temperatures up to 40°C. The Libyan jird is commonly kept as a pet and is known for its docile nature and ease of care.

Gerbils in North America

North America is home to several species of gerbils, including the kangaroo rat, the pocket mouse, and the desert mouse. These species are found in the deserts of the southwestern United States and Mexico and can survive in temperatures up to 45°C. They are known for their jumping abilities and unique adaptations to desert life.

The Best Gerbil Habitats in Captivity

Gerbil Cages and Habitats

When it comes to creating the best habitat for pet gerbils, it’s important to mimic their natural environment as much as possible. A gerbil cage should be at least 10 gallons in size and have plenty of bedding material for burrowing. Gerbils are social animals and should be kept in pairs or groups.

Gerbil Bedding and Environment

Gerbils prefer bedding that is soft, absorbent, and dust-free. Popular bedding choices include paper-based products, aspen shavings, and wood pulp. The environment should be kept at a temperature between 20°C to 25°C and should not be exposed to direct sunlight.

Gerbil Feeding and Nutrition

Gerbils are omnivores and require a diet that includes both plant and animal matter. A balanced gerbil diet should consist of high-quality pellets, fresh vegetables, and occasional treats such as fruits and nuts. They also require access to fresh water at all times.

Gerbil Conservation Efforts

Threats to Gerbil Habitats

Gerbil habitats across the world are under threat from human activities such as farming, mining, and urbanization. Climate change is also affecting gerbil populations, as rising temperatures and droughts make it difficult for them to survive in their natural habitats.

Gerbil Conservation and Management Practices

Conservation efforts for gerbils include protecting their natural habitats, creating artificial habitats to support their populations, and implementing sustainable farming practices that support gerbil populations. Captive breeding programs also help to maintain healthy populations of gerbils in captivity.


Gerbils are fascinating animals that have adapted to life in some of the harshest environments on earth. Understanding their natural habitats and their physical characteristics can help us create better habitats for them in captivity and contribute to their conservation in the wild. By protecting their habitats and implementing sustainable practices, we can ensure that these furry little rodents continue to thrive for generations to come.

ThePetFaq Team