Facts About Shrews

Filed under Animals

Shrews are mammals that resemble the appearance of a mouse. Their appearance is characterized by a pointed nose that is quite long and soft, fine fur that is gray-brown in color. The shrew family is of various different species which include the American Short-tailed Shrew (Blarina brevicauda),  Elephant Shrew (Elephantulus), Eurasian Water Shrew (Neomys fodiens), and the Desert Shrew (Notiosorex crawfordi). Most of these species of the shrew family live in different habitats all over the world except for the polar regions. Their habitats include the desert, grasslands, and the forests.

FACT 1:  The world’s smallest mammal belongs to the shrew family. It weighs around 2 grams or less and measures around 3 to 5 cm in length.

FACT 2: They can slay prey many times larger than they are, such as other shrews, or even mice. This is due to the poison in their saliva. This also allows them to survive despite their small size.

FACT 3: Normally, shrews feed on worms, young plants, berries, insects, frogs, and small fishes.

FACT 4: The Elephant Shrew has a gestation of 56 days and gives birth to an offspring or two at a time during the months of August and September. However, this differs with other species in the shrew family.

FACT 5: Shrew offspring are born already capable of mobility entirely on their own. They can already hunt for their own food two weeks after birth and grow sexually mature in six weeks after birth.

FACT 6: The brain of an Elephant Shrew weighs around 1.3 grams.

FACT 7: Shrews are particularly nocturnal animals. However, they are on the go night and day.

FACT 8: Shrews have a high metabolism. This is the reason why they are always on the hunt for food.

FACT 9: Some shrew species live on land, some live in trees, and some live near water.

FACT 10:  Shrews can eat as many insects as their body weight each day. That is the reason they are credited in decreasing damaging pests and insects on farms.

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References :


[0] http://www.bio.davidson.edu/Courses/anphys/1999/Rachal/rachal2.htm
[1] http://nationalzoo.si.edu/Animals/SmallMammals/fact-seeshrew.cfm
[2] http://nationalzoo.si.edu/Animals/SmallMammals/fact-seeshrew.cfm
[3] http://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/facts.html
[4] http://www4.uwsp.edu/biology/facilities/vertebrates/Mammals%20of%20Wisconsin/Cryptotis%20parva/Cryptotis%20parva%20page.htm