Sorex longirostris - Bachman, 1837
Southeastern Shrew
Other English Common Names: southeastern shrew
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Sorex longirostris Bachman, 1837 (TSN 179936)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.103012
Element Code: AMABA01060
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Vertebrates - Mammals - Other Mammals
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Craniata Mammalia Soricomorpha Soricidae Sorex
Genus Size: D - Medium to large genus (21+ 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: Sorex longirostris
Taxonomic Comments: 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).

Demboski and Cook (2003) used DNA sequence data to examine phylogenetic relationships among 8 members of the Sorex cinereus group (S. camtschatica, S. cinereus, S. haydeni, S. jacksoni, S. portenkoi, S. preblei, S. pribilofensis, and S. ugyunak) and S. longirostris. Phylogenetic analyses recovered 2 major clades within the species group: a northern clade that includes the Beringian species (S. camtschatica, S. jacksoni, S. portenkoi, S. pribilofensis, and S. ugyunak), S. haydeni, and S. preblei and a southern clade that includes S. cinereus and S. longirostris. Mitochondrial DNA clades generally corresponded to previously identified morphological groups with 2 exceptions: inclusion of S. longirostris with S. cinereus in the southern clade and inclusion of S. preblei within the northern clade.

See George (1988) for an electrophoretic study of systematic relationships among Sorex species.
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G5
Global Status Last Reviewed: 01Nov1996
Global Status Last Changed: 01Nov1996
Rounded Global Status: G5 - Secure
Reasons: Widespread in southeastern North America and present in a wide variety of habitats.
Nation: United States
National Status: N5 (05Sep1996)

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 (S4), Arkansas (S2), District of Columbia (S3), Florida (S5), Georgia (S4), Illinois (S3S4), Indiana (S3), Kentucky (S4), Louisiana (S2), Maryland (S3S4), Mississippi (S4), Missouri (S4), North Carolina (S4), South Carolina (SNR), Tennessee (S4), Virginia (S5), West Virginia (SU)

Other Statuses

IUCN Red List Category: LC - Least concern

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent: >2,500,000 square km (greater than 1,000,000 square miles)
Range Extent Comments: Southeastern U.S., southern Maryland to central Florida, west to northeastern Missouri, eastern Oklahoma, and eastern Louisiana (Taylor and Wilkinson 1988). Subpecies EIONIS: northern two-thirds of peninsular Florida. Subspecies FISHERI: vicinity of the historical Dismal Swamp of Virginia and North Carolina; possibly also coastal South Carolina (further study is needed). Subspecies LONGIROSTRIS: remainder of range. (Jones et al. 1991). Records from McHenry County, Illinois, and Giles County, Virginia, pertain to S. CINEREUS (French 1980). To 760 m in North Carolina.

Number of Occurrences: 81 to >300

Population Size: 10,000 to >1,000,000 individuals

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: (>2,500,000 square km (greater than 1,000,000 square miles)) Southeastern U.S., southern Maryland to central Florida, west to northeastern Missouri, eastern Oklahoma, and eastern Louisiana (Taylor and Wilkinson 1988). Subpecies EIONIS: northern two-thirds of peninsular Florida. Subspecies FISHERI: vicinity of the historical Dismal Swamp of Virginia and North Carolina; possibly also coastal South Carolina (further study is needed). Subspecies LONGIROSTRIS: remainder of range. (Jones et al. 1991). Records from McHenry County, Illinois, and Giles County, Virginia, pertain to S. CINEREUS (French 1980). To 760 m in North Carolina.

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: endemic to a single nation

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AL, AR, DC, FL, GA, IL, IN, KY, LA, MD, MO, MS, NC, SC, TN, VA, WV

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: Sechrest, 2002


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
AR Benton (05007)*, Polk (05113)*, Pope (05115), Searcy (05129), Stone (05137), Washington (05143)*
KY Christian (21047)
LA Ascension (22005)*, East Baton Rouge (22033)*, East Feliciana (22037), Livingston (22063)*, Tangipahoa (22105)*, Washington (22117)*, West Feliciana (22125)*
MD Anne Arundel (24003), Calvert (24009)*, Charles (24017), Howard (24027), Montgomery (24031), Prince Georges (24033)
MO Adair (29001)*, Barry (29009)
MS Alcorn (28003), Clay (28025)*, Franklin (28037)*, Harrison (28047), Jones (28067)*, Lafayette (28071)*, Monroe (28095)*, Noxubee (28103)*, Prentiss (28117)*, Rankin (28121), Scott (28123)*, Tishomingo (28141)*, Warren (28149)*, Wayne (28153)*
NC Mitchell (37121)*
TN Anderson (47001), Benton (47005)*, Bledsoe (47007), Campbell (47013), Cannon (47015)*, Carroll (47017), Carter (47019)*, Claiborne (47025), Coffee (47031), Cumberland (47035), Decatur (47039), Dickson (47043), Fayette (47047), Fentress (47049), Franklin (47051), Gibson (47053), Giles (47055)*, Grainger (47057), Grundy (47061), Hamilton (47065), Hardeman (47069), Hardin (47071), Hawkins (47073), Haywood (47075)*, Henderson (47077), Humphreys (47085), Knox (47093)*, Lake (47095)*, Lincoln (47103), Madison (47113)*, McNairy (47109), Monroe (47123), Montgomery (47125), Morgan (47129), Obion (47131), Perry (47135), Polk (47139), Putnam (47141), Roane (47145), Sevier (47155), Shelby (47157), Smith (47159)*, Stewart (47161), Sullivan (47163)*, Sumner (47165), Unicoi (47171), Van Buren (47175), Washington (47179)*, Weakley (47183), White (47185)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
02 Upper Chesapeake Bay (02060001)+*, Severn (02060004)+*, Patuxent (02060006)+, Middle Potomac-Anacostia-Occoquan (02070010)+, Lower Potomac (02070011)+
03 Conasauga (03150101)+, Upper Tombigbee (03160101)+*, Tibbee (03160104)+*, Noxubee (03160108)+*, Lower Chickasawhay (03170003)+*, Lower Leaf (03170005)+*, Mississippi Coastal (03170009)+, Middle Pearl-Strong (03180002)+, Lower Pearl. Mississippi (03180004)+*
05 Upper Cumberland (05130101)+*, South Fork Cumberland (05130104)+, Upper Cumberland-Cordell Hull (05130106)+*, Collins (05130107)+, Caney (05130108)+, Lower Cumberland-Old Hickory Lake (05130201)+, Stones (05130203)+*, Harpeth (05130204)+, Lower Cumberland (05130205)+, Red (05130206)+
06 South Fork Holston (06010102)+*, Watauga (06010103)+*, Holston (06010104)+, Lower French Broad (06010107)+, Nolichucky (06010108)+, Watts Bar Lake (06010201)+*, Upper Clinch (06010205)+, Powell (06010206)+, Lower Clinch (06010207)+, Emory (06010208)+, Middle Tennessee-Chickamauga (06020001)+, Hiwassee (06020002)+, Ocoee (06020003)+, Guntersville Lake (06030001)+, Upper Elk (06030003)+, Lower Elk (06030004)+*, Pickwick Lake (06030005)+, Lower Tennessee-Beech (06040001)+, Upper Duck (06040002)+, Lower Duck (06040003)+, Kentucky Lake (06040005)+
07 North Fork Salt (07110005)+*
08 Lower Mississippi-Memphis (08010100)+*, Obion (08010202)+*, South Fork Obion (08010203)+, North Fork Forked Deer (08010204)+*, South Fork Forked Deer (08010205)+*, Upper Hatchie (08010207)+, Lower Hatchie (08010208)+, Loosahatchie (08010209)+, Wolf (08010210)+, Little Tallahatchie (08030201)+*, Yocona (08030203)+*, Lower Yazoo (08030208)+*, Ouachita Headwaters (08040101)+*, Homochitto (08060205)+*, Bayou Sara-Thompson (08070201)+*, Amite (08070202)+, Tickfaw (08070203)+*
11 Beaver Reservoir (11010001)+, Middle White (11010004)+, Buffalo (11010005)+, Robert S. Kerr Reservoir (11110104)+*, Dardanelle Reservoir (11110202)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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General Description: A smallish shrew (in Georgia and Alabama, usually 68-102 mm total length, tail 24-40 mm, hind foot [minus claw] 8-11 mm, 2-6 g) with a sharply pointed snout, beady eyes, and small ears nearly hidden in the fine soft pelage; pelage Prout's brown or mummy brown above, cinnamon brown or ochraceous tawny below (Jackson 1928); five small unicuspidate teeth behind the upper incisors (the fifth is minute, the fourth generally is larger than [less commonly equal to] the third, and both of these are smaller than the first and second; tips of teeth are dark chestnut; feet are delicate, with slender weak claws; condylobasal length of skull 13.8-15.5 mm in Georgia/Alabama (see French 1980 for further information).
Diagnostic Characteristics: Compared to S. CINEREUS, tail relatively shorter, upper and lower first incisors are relatively smaller, all teeth are more lightly pigmented, and the skull is smaller, shorter and the rostrum broader (French 1980); the relative size of the third and fourth unicupids does not always differentiate this species from S. CINEREUS (French 1980). Inner ridge of upper unicuspids lacks pigment; greatest width across the the outside of the first large molariform teeth usually is less than 2 times the distance from the posterior end of the palate to the anterior end of the first incisors (see French 1980).
Reproduction Comments: Young are born from April through October. Litter size is 1-6 (average around 4); 1-3 litters per year. Gestation probably lasts 2-3 weeks (if same as other shrews). Little is known about this species' life cycle.
Ecology Comments: 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 10 have been captured in the same locality (French 1980). The most commonly reported predators include barred and barn owls and domestic cats.
Non-Migrant: Y
Locally Migrant: N
Long Distance Migrant: N
Palustrine Habitat(s): Bog/fen, FORESTED WETLAND, HERBACEOUS WETLAND, Riparian
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
Habitat Comments: 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). Generally resides underground or under ground cover. Might respond favorably to disturbances that allow dense ground cover to thrive (Pagels et al. 1982).

Subspecies EIONIS: 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: various lowland habitats, fields and forest edges in mountains, areas with heavy ground vegetation; in Virginia, common throughout the Piedmont and Coastal Plain, uncommon in western highlands. Subspecies FISHERI: most abundant in mesic successional habitats (Jones et al. 1991).

Adult Food Habits: Invertivore
Immature Food Habits: Invertivore
Food Comments: Eats small invertebrates, particularly spiders, caterpillars, slugs and snails, crickets, beetles, and centipedes; also some vegetative material (see French 1980).
Adult Phenology: Circadian
Immature Phenology: Circadian
Phenology Comments: Mostly nocturnal; however, active throughout the day.
Length: 11 centimeters
Weight: 4 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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NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 04May1995
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 06Apr1995
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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