Shrew is the smallest mammal (weighing 2-10 grams) that can be found in all sorts of habitats, but are little known for its reserved mode of living. Shrew is a mouse-like animal, but unlike mouse it has a velvety fell and long sharp snout. The eyes are small and look like black beads. The fur on the tail is bristling.

There are 6 species of shrew in Karelia. They are different in size. Shrews can be met in all sorts of habitats in Karelia, but their density is diverse.

Shrews inhabit deciduous and mixed forests, fir-woods and clearings. They have a bent for shady moist places. The density is about 100 and more of shrews per a hectare.

Shrews are very cautious and spend most of their time in passageways underground. Shrew is a bad digger and have no special devices for soil digging. That’s why they make tunnels only in crumble soils, moss and snow and mostly use the holes of mouse-like rodents and moles.

Due to very high metabolic rate shrews are very gluttonous. In order to satisfy their hunger, shrews must eat their own weight daily. They eat different insects: small beetles and larvae, caterpillars, earthworms and spiders.

Water shrew can be met in all sorts of habitats in Karelia. It is differed from other shrews by a huge size (weighing 10-20 grams, the length is 70-100 mm) and bicolor fir: black top and white belly.

Water shrew is well used to the semiaquatic way of living, it swims and dives well. It has a fringe of stiff hairs on its feet that make them function like paddles.

The water shrew inhabits along-shore of the swamps, bogs, lakes, rivers and wooded stream sides. Water shrews make approximately 2 per cents of the total quantity of shrews. The water shrew lives in its own nest or in the other animals’ holes. The nes is of a globe shape and is made of grass.

The water shrew is active all the year round and doesn’t hibernate. Water shrews eat any small freshwater animals, including mayfly and stonefly nymphs, leeches, small fish, and worms. It eats insects and other small invertebrates it finds on shore. Mating occurs between April and August.

In general, water shrews are useful animals. They annihilate harmful invertebrate animals and thus pays off the harm they cause to the fish industry.

туристский портал

Rambler's Top100 Яндекс.Метрика