Generally inhabit Arctic tundra; often found in relatively dry, high, and rocky tundra habitats such as ridges and hummocks and habitats with an abundance of willow (Salix spp.) shrubs (Banfield 1974, Predavec and Krebs 2000). Closely associated with cotton-grass sedges (Bee and Hall 1956). Occupies runways beneath snow; also tunnels down to permafrost level. In a study of microhabitat use in northern Canada, collared lemmings preferred tundra with high hummocks, high percent cover of plants (especially Salix lanata) and numerous burrows (Predavec and Krebs 2000).
Banfield, A. W. F. 1974. The mammals of Canada. University of Toronto Press, Toronto, Canada. 438 pp.
Bee, J.W. and E.R. Hall. 1956. Mammals of northern Alaska on the Arctic Slope. Univ. Kansas Mus. Nat. Hist. Misc. Publ. No. 8. 309 p.
Predavec, M. and C.J. Krebs. 2000. Microhabitat utilisation, home ranges, and movement patterns of the collared lemming (Dicrostonyx groenlandicus) in the central Canadian Arctic. Canadian Journal of Zoology 78:1885-1890.