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"SHREW TALK" - Vol. 1, No. 25 - 02 December 1997

SHREW TALK - 02 December 1997 - Vol. 1, No. 25
Number of Recipients: >282
Contents of this Issue
o Research
1. Landscape structure and guidelines for conservation of shrews
1a.Re: Landscape structure / guidelines for conservation of shrews/ IUCN?
2. Ugandan shrews
3. Trapped shrews in discarded bottles
4. Baiting shrew traps: An appetizer for raccoons...
5. Shrew trapping: A reply to J. Whitaker (ST 1/24, 24 November, 1997)
6. More CMR shrew trapping
o Introductions
1. Juha-Pekka Hirvi: Eco-toxicology
2. Jon Benge: Ecology of riparian mammals
o Shrew Bibliography: New Papers / Books
1. Addendum: References to shrew parasites
2. Re: Landscape structure / guidelines for conservation: References
o What's New on the Shrew (ist's) Site
o Shrew Talk Instructions
1) Landscape structure and guidelines for conservation of shrews
Date: Fri, 28 Nov 1997 09:16:17 +0100 (MET)
From: Ron Verhagen <verhagen@ruca.ua.ac.be>
Dear Werner, Do you know of any publications or reports in which landscape structure is related to the presence or abundance of West European shrews and guidelines are developed for a better protection and conservation of these species.
Kind regards, Ron
Ron Verhagen Evolutionary Biology University of Antwerp Belgium Groenenborgerlaan 171 - 2020 Antwerp, Belgium Tel. xx-(0)3-218.04.57 Fax. xx-(0)3-218.04.74
1a) Re: Landscape structure / guidelines for conservation of shrews/ IUCN?
From: W. Haberl - shrewbib@sorex.vienna.at
Dear Ron,
I found a few references that might be of interest (see below). You may also want to take a look at the IUCN/SSC report 1995 (Status Survey and Conservation Action Plan). I have made offers to extend this network to the IUCN / Insectivore Specialist Group. I would very much appreciate receiving any comments from the IUCN members. What can be done for the conservation of threatened shrew species? How can we help? The Shrew (ist's) Site would be willing to act as a mediator and a possibility for fund-raising.
I hope the below references (I have also included some non-European literature) are of help. You can also look up the abstracts on the CD-ROM.
(The papers by R. Schroepfer deal with the structure of river banks necessary for Neomys fodiens.)
Best wishes,
Werner _______________________________________________________________________
2) Ugandan Shrews
From: u01pj@abdn.ac.uk
Subject: Shrew talk
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 1997 17:15:07 +0000 (GMT)
Dear Werner,
Thanks very much for your help on the references. They were quite useful. The trapping I carried out was systematic, over a period of 6 1/2 weeks (3200 trapnights).Caught 13 species (5 spp of shrew & 8 spp of rodents), involving 234 individuals and an average of 1.7 captures per trapsite. I dissected the shrews at the University of Uganda, to be identified by R. Kityo. 2 weeks ago I also faxed Rainer Hutterer to get some references on Ugandan shrews, and (SNIP) I am still waiting for R. Kityo to confirm his identification. Apart from that my overall data show so far interesting results. (Robert Kityo works for the Museum at Makerere. There was another expedition to Mt. Elgon in 1996, and the girl who worked on rodents as well suggested to me to get the shrews identified by Robert.)
Pascale Juch _______________________________________________________________________
3) Trapped shrews in discarded bottles
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 1997 15:23:52 -0500 (EST)
From: VctrMan@aol.com
Subject: Shrew Talk: Live-trapping
While in South Africa many years ago working on my doctorate on vlei rats, I had the opportunity to live trap and study Crocidura. I found a publication in which someone in the UK had studied the small mammals associated with roadside rest stops in which they had noted several dead shrews in old wine bottles thrown back in the bushes. I thought this was a novel idea (and I got to drink the wine too), so I placed wine bottles (pushed down in the soft soil of the vlei "marsh" lying on their side so the opening was flush with the ground). I was astounded as to the success rate. Initially I used no bait, and found that it made not a difference. Shrews entered out of curiosity and were unable to get a foothold to get back out. If I were to do it again, I would put something in for food (meal worms, etc.) merely as an aid in keeping them alive. Good luck.
Dick Davis Calif. Dept. of Health _______________________________________________________________________
4) Baiting shrew traps: An appetizer for raccoons...
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 1997 22:14:20 -0500
From: Stuart & Maureen <Nivens@vaniercollege.qc.ca>
To: shrewbib@sorex.vienna.at
Subject: Shrew Talk - disaster at bait friendly trial run
I had inquiried last year on how to improve shrew survivability when live trapping. I got some great advise from a number of people. I trap small mammals as part of a college course, so identification, aging, sexing, and handling live animals are my reasons for doing this. I went to our Animal Care Committee, of which I am a member, and we all decided on increased intervals between trap checks and a modification of the bait. Cat food would be added to increase shrew survivability and apple slices would be added along with the peanut butter/oatmeal/vegetable oil mix to increase moisture content. I used small cans of dry pellet form cat treats as they were the easiest to handle in the field. I had done everything right, hadn't I? WELL.......... The Raccoons loved me for it. Not only did they follow behind us ripping apart the traps and damaging quite a few of them, they got a nice meal. The appetizer was the apple, followed by the main course of the peanut butter/oatmeal/oil mix, and finally finishing off a few cat treats for dessert. If they were lucky, they got a small mammal as a bonus to their meal. The students were not impressed.
I work in an area that is VERY abundant in wildlife. I think I will skip the cat food for next year as I believe that this is what brought the Raccoons in at full force. Military precision and accuracy, not one trap undamaged. Their were even a few obvious signs that it was a Raccoon, such as paw prints and a few very large steaming scat samples amid bits of trap. Any non smelly alternatives? I have been thinking of mealworms, but are their any other ideas out there? I measured up the short tailed shrew and they are the size of the small mice we have, so cutting holes in the traps for the shrews to escape is not feasable. These shrew excluders (holes cut out of the trap) that were recommended to me last year by some of you readers worries me. If I do that, wouldn't the small mammals find that edge in the metal (we have aluminum and sheet metal) and chew their way out?
My other option is for the students to identify study skins of the animals we would have seen and handle lab mice to get their skills in handling small mammals. I am not ready to go that way yet.
Any suggestions?
Stuart Niven
5) Shrew trapping: A reply to J. Whitaker (ST 1/24, 24 November, 1997)
From: Julie A. Fuller [SMTP:jfuller@selway.umt.edu]
Sent: Monday, November 24, 1997 10:54 PM
To: 'joeshrew@siu.edu'
My name is Julie Fuller. I am a freshman majoring in wildlife biology at the University of Montana. I am doing a project this spring at the Lee Metcalf National Wildlife refuge that deals with capturing small mammals for a simple survey. I plan to use both pitfall traps and Sherman live traps to gather data, and I wanted to ask you about your pitfall experience.
I will have to add the water to the pitfalls to kill the shrews in order to identify the species. My question is, will the pitfalls show results immediately? How long should I expect to have them out before I should find results?
Also, when you pre-baited the Sherman traps and the Russian traps, how long did you pre-bait for? I was planning on five days... I don't know if that is too long or too short.
Thank you very much for your help!
--Julie Fuller _______________________________________________________________________
6) More CMR shrew trapping
From: Stephen Petersen (ddansere@gpu.srv.ualberta.ca) On 28.11.97 18:05 I am looking for a reliable method to live trap shrews (for mark recapture) while still being able to identify them to species. Our speicies are Sorex cinereus, S.hoyi, S. monticolus, S. arcticus, and maybe S. palustris. Any help would be appreciated.
1) Juha-Pekka Hirvi: Eco-toxicology
Date: Mon, 01 Dec 1997 12:09:00 +0200
From: Juha-Pekka Hirvi <Juha-Pekka.Hirvi@vyh.fi>
Organization: Suomen ympäristökeskus
I am working with national monitoring of harmful substances like heavy metals and persistent organig pollutants (POPs). In our pilotstudies we have found that the shrew are quite good indicator species to reflect loadings and concentration levels of these substances as general in foodchains of terrestrial boreal environment.
I want to be putted on the E-mail list. E-Mailing adress is; juha-pekka.hirvi@vyh.fi
Sincerely yours
Juha-Pekka Hirvi M.Sc. ecotoxicology Finnish Environment Institute Monitoring and Assessment Division P.O.Box 140 FIN -00251 Helsinki FINLAND tel: +358 9 403000 fax: +358 9 40300391 _______________________________________________________________________
2) Jon Benge: Ecology of riparian mammals
Date: Fri, 28 Nov 1997 10:29:17 +0000
From: j.benge@herts.ac.uk (Jon Benge)
I am a PhD student at the University of Hertfordshire, UK, studying aspects of the ecology of riparian mammals. At the moment I am working primarily on the water vole (Arvicola terrestris) but I would very much like to include some work on the European water shrew (Neomys fodiens) in my research. With the water voles I am looking at habitat use/requirements and related subjects, I would be interested in doing the same for water shrews. I realise that they are difficult to study in the field, but if anyone has any advice or suggestions I would be very interested to hear from you.
Regards Jon
Jon Benge Landscape & Ecology Research Group Department of Environmental Sciences University of Hertfordshire Bayfordbury Field Station Lower Hatfield Rd Hertford, Herts, SG13 8LD Tel. (01707) 285562 Mobile. 0467 488589 Fax. (01992) 503498 Email. J.Benge@herts.ac.uk
“The Shrew Bibliography” is a collection of more than 6000 references to research on the biology of the Soricidae (Insectivora, Mammalia) and small mammal ecology. More info: http://members.vienna.at/shrew/shrewbib.html
To announce your new research papers/books, please follow the instructions (separate fields with the character "#"): Author(s)#Year#Title#Journal&Page No.#Abstract#Keywords#Address *I* would appreciate receiving a reprint of your paper and/or a list of your publications to add to the bibliography. _______________________________________________________________________
1) Addendum: References to shrew parasites
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 1997 21:36:06 -0700
From: Don Pattie <donpatt@nait.ab.ca>
Werner and Mike Kinsella:
A couple of references to parasites of shrews (Vagrant shrew Sorex vagrans, Pygmy shrew Sorex hoyi and Big short-tailed shrew Blarina brevicauda) sorry haven't learned italics on this machine yet.
Kennedy, M.J. and R.A. Newman, 1986. Synopsis of the parasites of vertebrates of Canada, ectoparasites of terrestrial mammals. Queen's Printer, Edmonton, Alberta 109pp
Kennedy, M.J. 1986. Synopsis of the parasites of vertebrates of Canada, helminths and protozoa of terrestrial mammals. Queen's Printer, Edmonton, Alberta 90 pp.
Cheers, Don Pattie _______________________________________________________________________
2) Re: Landscape structure / guidelines for conservation: References
From: W. Haberl - shrewbib@sorex.vienna.at (Taken from 'The Shrew Bibliography') -------------------------------------------------
  • 492 Bowland, J.M., M.R. Perrin 1993 Wetlands as reservoirs of small-mammal populations in the natal Drakensberg. South African Journal of Wildlife Research 23(2): 39-43. English; English Afrikaans Wetland areas supported a much greater density of small mammals than did other habitats, and represent areas of considerable conservation importance. Small-mammal species diversity increased with increasing habitat heterogeneity and disturbance. Fire is an important tool in maximizing population density and diversity of the small-mammal community.
  • 691 Canova, L., M. Fasola 1991 Communities of small mammals in six biotopes of northern Italy. Acta Theriologica 36(1-2): 73-86. English Community diversity and richness were positively correlated with habitat structural diversity. The species selected micro-habitats that were significantly different from those available; ground cover at arboreal and grass level and litter structure were generally the most important variables. There were significant differences in microhabitat use among dominant species; the intensity of segregation was higher in mature woodland and alder grove than in the other biotopes, which may reflect their different management.
  • 1279 Eichenberger, C. 1986 Faunenaustausch von Kleinsäugern zwischen naturnahen Biotopen und Intensivkulturen. Lizentiatsarbeit, Zool. Inst., Univ. Bern.
  • 1522 Frank, F. 1953 Die Entstehung neuer Feldmaus-Plagegebiete durch Moorkultivierung und Melioration. Wasser und Boden 5: 1-4. 2179 Herman, J.T., R. Gubbels, F. Schepers, R. Schols 1990 The importance of the streams in South Limburg (Netherlands) for wildlife. Publicaties van het Natuurhistorisch Genootschap in Limburg 38(1): 35-68. Dutch; English summ. This paper discusses the faunistic importance of the streams and small rivers in the southern part of the province of Limburg. In general, the characteristics of these streams and small rivers differ a lot from those in parts of the Netherlands, mainly becaue of their higher rate of flow. Although man has had a profound influence on the stream habitats, many streams are still of great importance for various animal species; several of these species only occur in this part of the country. However, many species have decreased in numbers and distribution or are already extinct. This is due to regulation and alluviation works, agricultural practices, disturbance and, especially, very poor water quality in the first part of this century. Numbers, occurrence, distribution, population size and trends, habitat demands and threats for these species are discussed. Recommendations for the management of these species are presented. It is stressed, however, that the protection and development of a natural, self-supporting and complete aquatic ecosystem should be the main goal, rather than the introduction of a large number of protective measures for individual species.
  • 2708 Karpinski, J. 1947 Shrews (Sorex spp.) and water shrews (Neomys spp.). The part they play in the forest and the necessity of their protection. Chron. Przyr. Ojczsta, Krakow 3: 27-31. Polish; English summ.
  • 3426 McComb, W.C., C.L. Chambers, M. Newton 1993 Small mammal and amphibian communities and habitat associations in red alder stands, central Oregon Coast Range. Northwest Science 67(3): 181-188. English
  • 3434 McDonald, K.A., J.H. Brown 1992 Using montane mammals to model extinctions due to global change. Conservation Biology 6(3): 409-415. English; Spanish summ. We use data on the species-area relationship and the nested subset structure of the boreal mammal faunas inhabiting isolated mountaintops in the Great Basin to develop a simple quantitative model that predicts the number and identity of species that would go extinct under an assumed scenario of changing climate and vegetation. Global warming of 3 degree C is predicted to cause the loss of 9-62% of the species inhabiting each mountain range and the extinction of three of fourteen species throughout the region. These results suggest (1) that it is possible to make highly plausible predictions about the susceptibility of species to extinction without detailed information about their population biology, and (2) that global and regional environmental changes seriously threaten the survival of species that are restricted in distribution to both natural ‘habitat islands’ and biological reserves.
  • 3824 Neet, C.R., N. Naceur 1995 Especes menacees d'extinction du canton de Vaud - Mesures de conservation. Centre de conservation de la faune et la nature, St-Sulpice.
  • 4034 Pachinger, K. 1984 Structure and productivity of micromammals in 2 types of forest with various degrees of influence by man. Acta Fac. Rerum Nat. Univ. Comenianae Zool. 27: 57-70. Slovak; English summ.
  • 4834 Schröpfer, R. 1983 Die Wasserspitzmaus (Neomys fodiens Pennant, 1771) als Biotopgüteanzeiger für Uferhabitate an Fließgewässern. Verh. Dtsch. Zool. Ges. (Stuttgart) 1983: 137-141.
  • 4835 Schröpfer, R. 1985 Symposium über semiaquatische Säugetiere und ihre Lebensräume. Z. Angew. Zool. 72(1/2): 1-10. 4836 Schröpfer, R. 1985 Ufergebundenes Verhalten und Habitatselektion bei der Wasserspitzmaus Neomys fodiens (Pennant, 1771). Z. Angew. Zool. 72(1/2): 37-48.
  • 4841 Schröpfer, R., M. Stubbe 1992 The diversity of European semiaquatic mammals within the continuum of running water systems - an introduction to the symposium. In: Schröpfer, R., M. Stubbe, M., D. Heidecke (eds.): Semiaquatische Säugetiere. Semiaquatic mammals. Kongress- und Tagungsberichte der Martin Luther Univ. Halle-Wittenberg, Halle (Saale), Wiss. Beiträge Univ. Halle 1992: 9-14.
  • 4842 Schröpfer, R., M. Stubbe, M., D. Heidecke (eds.) 1992 Semiaquatische Säugetiere. Semiaquatic mammals. Kongress- und Tagungsberichte der Martin Luther Univ. Halle-Wittenberg, Halle (Saale), Wiss. Beiträge Univ. Halle 1992, 468 p.
  • 4986 Shvarts, E.A., D.V. Demin, M.V. Glazov, D.G. Zamolodchikov 1992 Organization of the population of shrews in Eurasian temperate forests: Effect of the structure of soil mesofauna on this population. Doklady Akademii Nauk Sssr 322(2): 427-431. Russian Cluster analysis of data on the biotopic distribution of Sorex araneus, S. caecutiens, S. minutus, S. isodon, S. minutissimus and Neomys fodiens was used to assess the spatial organization of shrew populations in conifer-broadleaved forests of European Russia. An increase in the total reserves of soil mesofauna biomass results in the fact that the major dimensional classes of invertebrates become so abundant that they can ensure a stable existence of additional species.
  • 5152 Spitzenberger, F. 1964 Zur Ökologie und Bionomie der Spitzmäuse (Mammalia, Insectivora) der Donauauen oberhalb und unterhalb Wiens. Unpublished Ph.D. Thesis, University Vienna.
  • 5953 Yahner, R.H. 1989 Small mammals associated with even-aged aspen and mixed-oak forest stands in central Pennsylvania (USA). Journal of the Pennsylvania Academy of Science 62(3): 122-126. English Correlations between several small mammal variables and habitat features, such as species richness of small mammals and density of fallen logs, suggested that small mammals selected younger stands in order to more efficiently forage, avoid predators, or find suitable home sites and microclimate. Future cutting cycles are expected to have a greater negative impact on P. leucopus than on the other two species. Because species richness (S) and TI changed little among years or habitats, H' and J' may be better variables to use when assessing the impact of even-aged forest managment on small mammals communities over time or among stands of different age or cover type.
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