Eurasian pygmy shrew

Sorex minutus


Eurasian pygmy shrews are the smallest shrews in Estonia. They are 4.5–6 cm tall and weigh 3–5 grams. They look like other shrews: their tail is long, as is their skull, which is narrow and sharper near the nose. Their hair is dark brown. In Estonia, they can be found in some places, but their numbers are small everywhere. They live in forests, meadows, and bogs. They live in self-made burrows or those of other animals, hollow tree stumps, fallen tree trunks, etc. They are typical predators that eat anything they can handle. They mostly feed, however, on various insects and their larvae. In a day, they eat more than they weigh. Fast metabolism is necessary to maintain body temperature. They live up to 1.5 years. Almost all birds of prey and predators are their enemies. However, they are not very popular in terms of prey, because they have a strong smell of musk.