Blarina brevicauda - (Say, 1823)
Northern Short-tailed Shrew
Other English Common Names: Short-tailed Shrew, northern short-tailed shrew
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Blarina brevicauda (Say, 1823) (TSN 179967)
French Common Names: grande musaraigne
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.104671
Element Code: AMABA03010
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Vertebrates - Mammals - Other Mammals
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Craniata Mammalia Soricomorpha Soricidae Blarina
Genus Size: B - Very small genus (2-5 species)
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Wilson, D. E., and D. M. Reeder (editors). 1993. Mammal species of the world: a taxonomic and geographic reference. Second edition. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC. xviii + 1206 pp. Available online at: http://www.nmnh.si.edu/msw/.
Concept Reference Code: B93WIL01NAUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Blarina brevicauda
Taxonomic Comments: Blarina carolinensis formerly was regarded as conspecific with B. brevicauda; it was regarded as a distinct species by Jones et al. (1992) and Hutterer (in Wilson and Reeder 1993, 2005).
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G5
Global Status Last Reviewed: 04Apr2016
Global Status Last Changed: 04Nov1996
Ranking Methodology Used: Ranked by inspection
Rounded Global Status: G5 - Secure
Nation: United States
National Status: N5 (05Sep1996)
Nation: Canada
National Status: N5 (31Dec2017)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
United States Alabama (S5), Connecticut (S5), Delaware (S5), District of Columbia (S5), Georgia (S5), Illinois (S5), Indiana (S4), Iowa (S5), Kentucky (S5), Maine (S5), Maryland (S5), Massachusetts (S5), Michigan (S5), Minnesota (S5), Missouri (S4), Montana (S1S3), Nebraska (S3), New Hampshire (S5), New Jersey (S5), New York (S5), North Carolina (S5), North Dakota (SNR), Ohio (S5), Pennsylvania (S5), Rhode Island (S5), South Carolina (SNR), South Dakota (S5), Tennessee (S5), Vermont (S5), Virginia (S5), West Virginia (S5), Wisconsin (S5)
Canada Manitoba (S5), New Brunswick (S5), Nova Scotia (S5), Ontario (S5), Prince Edward Island (S5), Quebec (S5), Saskatchewan (S4S5)

Other Statuses

IUCN Red List Category: LC - Least concern

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent Comments: Occurs throughout most of U.S. and southern Canada east of the Great Plains. See French (1981) for information on distribution in the southeastern U.S.

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: Occurs throughout most of U.S. and southern Canada east of the Great Plains. See French (1981) for information on distribution in the southeastern U.S.

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
Color legend for Distribution Map
Endemism: occurs (regularly, as a native taxon) in multiple nations

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AL, CT, DC, DE, GA, IA, IL, IN, KY, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MT, NC, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, VA, VT, WI, WV
Canada MB, NB, NS, ON, PE, QC, SK

Range Map
Note: Range depicted for New World only. The scale of the maps may cause narrow coastal ranges or ranges on small islands not to appear. Not all vagrant or small disjunct occurrences are depicted. For migratory birds, some individuals occur outside of the passage migrant range depicted. For information on how to obtain shapefiles of species ranges see our Species Mapping pages at www.natureserve.org/conservation-tools/data-maps-tools.

Range Map Compilers: NatureServe, 2005; Sechrest, 2002


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
MT Sheridan (30091)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
10 Brush Lake closed basin (10060007)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Diagnostic Characteristics: See Carraway (1995) for a key to western North American soricids based primarily on dentaries.
Reproduction Comments: Breeds mainly early February or March through September; peaks may occur in spring and late summer or early fall. Gestation 3 weeks. Litter size: 3-10, average 4-6. Three or more litters per year. Weaned by 25 days. Sexually mature in 1-2 months. (Dapson 1968, George et al. 1986).
Ecology Comments: Home ranges can be more than twice the size of those of most shrews. Estimates of home range size average about 2.5 ha; ranges generally overlap (George et al. 1986). Population density estimates range from 1.6/ha to about 121/ha (George et al. 1986). In 14-year study in Illinois, displayed annual but not multiannual population fluctuations; annual peak occurred in July or in Oct. in different habitats; average minimum density about 1-6/ha in winter, average peak density about 10-20/ha in summer or early fall; none survived more than 10 months following first capture (Getz 1989).
Non-Migrant: Y
Locally Migrant: N
Long Distance Migrant: N
Palustrine Habitat(s): Bog/fen, FORESTED WETLAND
Terrestrial Habitat(s): Forest - Conifer, Forest - Hardwood, Forest - Mixed, Grassland/herbaceous, Old field, Shrubland/chaparral, Woodland - Conifer, Woodland - Hardwood, Woodland - Mixed
Special Habitat Factors: Burrowing in or using soil, Fallen log/debris, Standing snag/hollow tree
Habitat Comments: Most abundant in hardwood forests with deep leaf-litter and abundant food; avoids areas with little cover and extremes of temperature and moisture. Semifossorial; digs tunnels or uses existing ones. Constructs elaborate underground nest. Nests are placed under logs or stumps, or underground.
Adult Food Habits: Carnivore, Invertivore
Immature Food Habits: Carnivore, Invertivore
Food Comments: Eats earthworms, slugs, snails, insect larvae, millipedes, other invertebrates, and small vertebrates (especially mice in winter). May hoard food (especially snails).
Adult Phenology: Circadian
Immature Phenology: Circadian
Length: 14 centimeters
Weight: 29 grams
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Delineation
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Group Name: Shrews

Use Class: Not applicable
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: An area of suitable habitat where there is evidence of presence (or historical presence), with potential for continued presence; evidence minimally including a specimen or, in the case of certain species, a determination by a reliable observer of a live specimen in the hand.
Separation Barriers: Arbitrarily set at rivers wider than 50 meters at low water. Some shrews are relatively strong, active swimmers (notably SOREX PALUSTRIS, S. BENDIRII, SOREX ALASKANUS). No data on dispersal or other movement across water barriers.
Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 1 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Justification: Dispersal distances of shrews are poorly known, but these mammals are mobile enough to cover fairly large distances. Mature males especially may wander widely (Hawes 1977). Separation distance for suitable habitat attempts to reflect the small home range size of shrews, their secretive habits and consequent apparent absence in areas where they do in fact occur, and the seemingly low probability that two occupied locations separated by a gap of less than several kilometers of suitable habitat would represent independent populations.

Home ranges small: for breeding SOREX VAGRANS in British Columbia, 338 - 5261 square meters (Hawes 1977); in California, mean of about 372 square meters (Ingles 1961); for breeding S. MONTICOLUS (=OBSCURUS) in British Columbia, mean of 4020 square meters (Hawes 1977); for S. ARANEUS in England, a fall and winter home range of about 2800 square meters, with females occupying exclusive ranges (Buckner 1969).

Date: 21Sep2004
Author: Cannings, S., and G. Hammerson
Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
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Authors/Contributors
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Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 07Jun1993
Element Ecology & Life History Author(s): Hammerson, G.

Zoological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
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