Laxmann's Shrew, Masked Shrew
IUCN: LC; Be (III)
Value of species
Sorex caecutiens karpinskii Dehnel, 1949
Sorex caecutiens lapponicus Melander, 1942
Sorex caecutiens pleskei Ognev, 1922
It occurs in taiga and tundra zones from Eastern Europe to eastern Siberia, south to central Ukraine, northern Kazakhstan, Altai Mountains, Mongolia, Gansu and northeast China, Korea, Sakhalin, Kunashir Island, Shikotan Island, and Japan (Hokkaido) (Abe 2005).
In Europe it is generally less common than its congener the Common Shrew, but it is nevertheless a widespread and abundant species (Sulkava 1990). Populations are thought to be stable, with interannual fluctuations that follow no particular cycle (Pucek 1999). In eastern Karelia, where population density has best been studied, tenfold fluctuations have been recorded (Sulkava 1990). In Japan it is common in the forests of Hokkaido. In Mongolia it is abundant and widespread, most common in Hentii Mountain Range. This species can survive in most habitat types, preferentially forested habitats.
It occurs mainly in coniferous, deciduous and mixed forests in the taiga zone, although it is also found in a range of tundra habitats including birch and willow scrub in river valleys (Pucek 1999, Finch and van der Kooij 2005). In northern Fennoscandia, it tends to be found in shrub-rich mires, alpine birch forests, and open mires, and at the south-western edge of its range in Norway it occurs in alpine habitats (Finch and van der Kooij 2005). In general moist habitats are preferred, such as damp parts of forests with thick moss cover (Pucek 1999). Cultivated land is avoided (Sulkava 1990). The Masked Shrew feeds on a wide range of insects, spiders, and centipedes (Stone 1995). As it has a lower net food intake than larger shrews such as S. araneus, it can survive in less productive habitats (Finch and van der Kooij 2005).
- Літопис природи. Природний заповідник «Медобори». 2018, т.26. – Гримайлів, 2019. – 509 с.