Crocidura russula 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Eulipotyphla Soricidae

Scientific Name: Crocidura russula
Species Authority: (Hermann, 1780)
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English White-toothed Shrew, Greater White-toothed Shrew
French Crocidure Commune, Crocidure Musette
Spanish Musaraña Gris
Crocidura osorio Molina & Hutterer, 1989
Taxonomic Notes: Genetic studies indicate that the population on Gran Canaria in the Canary Islands (previously considered to be a separate species, Crocidura osorio) is conspecific with C. russula (Vogel et al. 2003), although differences in size, ecology, and behaviour (Hutterer et al. 1992) characterize it as a distinct island form.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Aulagnier, S., Hutterer, R., Amori, G., Kryštufek, B., Yigit, N., Mitsain, G. & Palomo, L.J.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Temple, H. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
A very widespread and common species, with no serious threats.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2004 Least Concern (LC)
1996 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is found in southern and western Europe (including some Atlantic and Mediterranean islands). It also occurs in North Africa, in Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria (Ramalhinho et al. 1999). The population on Gran Canaria in the Canary Islands (previously considered to be a separate species, Crocidura osorio) seems to have been introduced from Spain (Vogel et al. 2003). It typically occurs from sea level to 1,200 m, but has also been found as high as 2,000 m, particularly in Mediterranean landscapes (Palomo and Gisbert 2002).
Countries occurrence:
Algeria; Austria; Belgium; France; Germany; Liechtenstein; Luxembourg; Morocco; Netherlands; Portugal; Spain; Switzerland
Upper elevation limit (metres): 2000
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Population size and trends are unknown, although the species is generally widespread and fairly common within its range. In Germany at least it is stable and expanding in some parts, although it is not known if this is natural or the result of accidental human transportation (Kraft 2000). It is probably the most common shrew in Spain, and is often the dominant prey species in the barn owl's diet in this region (Ramalhinho et al. 1999).
Current Population Trend: Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: In the Mediterranean it occurs in a wide range of habitats including shrubland (maquis), open habitats, forest edges with abundant ground vegetation, cultivated fields, urban areas, gardens, farms, mountainous areas and land adjacent to rivers and streams (Palomo and Gisbert 2002). It particularly favours old terraces with dry stone walls. In northern Europe and at higher alititudes it is predominantly synanthropic, living in close proximity to humans in houses and gardens (Ramalhinho et al. 1999). In Morocco, it occurs in the mountains.

The Canary Islands population is found in remnant patches of the humid laurel forests in northern Gran Canaria and also in extensively managed farmlands. This population, along with the endemic C. canariensis, has a small litter size and lower metabolism than mainland species, possibly as a response to living in a warm and/or variable environment.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Due to its synanthropic habits it may suffer from the use of pesticides and other toxic chemicals (Ramalhinho et al. 1999), but this is not thought to be a serious threat to the species at present. The Canary Islands population is threatened by rapid urbanization and increasing desiccation.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It receives legal protection under the Bern Convention (Appendix III), and it occurs in numerous protected areas. The Canary Islands population is protected under Spanish law.

Citation: Aulagnier, S., Hutterer, R., Amori, G., Kryštufek, B., Yigit, N., Mitsain, G. & Palomo, L.J. 2008. Crocidura russula. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T29652A9509457. . Downloaded on 01 December 2015.
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