The bushy-tailed jird is well adapted to survive and reproduce in its harsh, desert environment where food and water availability are quite unpredictable. Its diet mainly consists of spiders and insects, such as beetles and crickets, but it will also eat seeds and vegetation (7). It is able to extract water from plant material, which enables it to survive periods of drought (3). It also conserves this precious water by producing dry faeces and small amounts of concentrated urine (8). Water loss is further minimized by being nocturnal, therefore avoiding the heat of the day (3). When there is an abundance of food after the wet season, the bushy-tailed jird stores most of the food it eats as fat, in preparation for entering hibernation (8).
Although there are no records of this species’ reproductive biology in the wild (9), in captivity, female bushy-tailed jirds have been known to give birth throughout the year, to litters containing a maximum of six young. A captive individual lived five years and five months (2).