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Sorex longirostris

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA MAMMALIA EULIPOTYPHLA SORICIDAE

Scientific Name: Sorex longirostris
Species Authority: Bachman, 1837
Common Name(s):
English Southeastern Shrew
Taxonomic Notes: An analysis of skull, dental, and external measurements by Jones et al. (1991) confirmed the differences among the three subspecies (longirostris, eionis, and fisheri). Zones of intergradation between adjacent subspecies have not been well defined. Junge and Hoffman (1981) suggested that fisheri may be a distinct species, but most authors continue to treat fisheri as a subspecies of longirostris (Jones et al. 1992, Hutterer in Wilson and Reeder 1993).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): NatureServe (Hammerson, G.)
Reviewer(s): Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Chanson, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
Justification:
Listed as Least Concern because it is very widespread, there are no major threats and the population is not in decline.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is found in the southeastern United States, from southern Maryland to central Florida, west to northeastern Missouri, eastern Oklahoma, and eastern Louisiana (Taylor and Wilkinson 1988). Subspecies eionis occurs in the northern two-thirds of peninsular Florida, the subspecies fisheri occurs in the vicinity of the historical Dismal Swamp of Virginia and North Carolina and possibly also coastal South Carolina (further study is needed), and subspecies longirostris occurs across the remainder of the range. (Jones et al. 1991).
Countries:
Native:
United States (Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: It is widespread in southeastern North America and present in a wide variety of habitats. Snap traps significantly underestimate the true abundance and density. Pitfalls have been found to better reflect population levels (Rose 1980). In Alabama, density was estimated at 30/ha and 44/ha on two plots; usually not more than ten have been captured in the same locality (French 1980).
Population Trend: Stable

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: It is found in various habitats ranging from bogs and damp woods to upland shrubby or wooded areas; apparently prefers moist to wet areas, usually bordering swamps, marshes, or rivers, and most often associated with heavy ground cover (French 1980). It generally resides underground or under ground cover. It might respond favourably to disturbances that allow dense ground cover to thrive (Pagels et al. 1982).

Subspecies eionis occurs in cypress swamps, bay swamps, hydric hammocks, slash pine and longleaf pine flatwoods, palmetto thickets, longleaf pine sandhills, xeric hammocks, sand pine scrub, clear-cuts. Subspecies longirostris occurs in various lowland habitats, fields and forest edges in mountains, areas with heavy ground vegetation; in Virginia, it is common throughout the Piedmont and Coastal Plain, but uncommon in western highlands. Subspecies fisheri is most abundant in mesic successional habitats (Jones et al. 1991).

Young are born from April through October. The litter size is one to six (average around four), and there are one to three litters per year. Gestation probably lasts two to three weeks (if same as other shrews). Little is known about this species' life cycle. Southeastern shrews eats small invertebrates, particularly spiders, caterpillars, slugs and snails, crickets, beetles, and centipedes; also some vegetative material (see French 1980). The most commonly reported predators include barred and barn owls and domestic cats. Mostly nocturnal; however, also active throughout the day.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no major threats to this very widespread species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It occurs in protected areas throughout its range.

Citation: NatureServe (Hammerson, G.) 2008. Sorex longirostris. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 22 October 2014.
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