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Last updated on April 21, 2014 at 1:20 EDT

Shrew-mole

The shrew-mole (Neurotrichus gibbsii) is the smallest North American mole. It is the only member of the genus Neurotrichus and the tribe Neutrichini. It is also known as the American Shrew Mole, but its relationship to the other shrew moles is distant.

It is found in damp forested or bushy areas with deep loose soils in the western United States and southwestern British Columbia.

It has dark grey fur, a long flattened snout. It has a short but thick bristled tail. It is about 3.94 in (10 cm) long including a 1.18 in (3 cm) long tail. It weighs about .35 ounces (10 g). Its front paws are smaller and do not face outwards from the body as in other moles. They are more similar to those of shrews. It has 36 teeth.

This mole is often active above ground. It forages in leaf litter for earthworms, insects, snails and slugs. It is able to climb bushes. Predators include owls, hawks and mustelids.

Females have litters with 1 to 4 young.

Shrew-mole