Scutisorex somereni (Thomas, 1910), Kyetume, Uganda.
OTHER COMMON NAMES
English: Hero shrew; French: Musaraigne cuirassee, musaraigne armee; German: Schildspitzmaus.
Head and body length 4.8-6in (12-15 cm); tail 2.7-3.8 in (6.8-9.5 cm); weight 1.1-3.2 oz (30-90 g). Long thick gray fur with thin, chamois-colored streaks. Distinguished by a unique spine having almost double the number of vertebrae of other shrews. The vertebrae have lateral interlocking spines in addition to dorsal and ventral spines. This spine structure may pro-
vide considerable strength to the back, without limiting dorsal, ventral and lateral flexibility. Other characteristics include a naked tail, 30 completely white teeth, and four teats.
Tropical rainforests of the Zaire Basin and adjacent mountains in Uganda, Rwanda, and Burundi.
Edges of gallery forests; in fallen leaves and in swampy regions. BEHAVIOR
The armored shrew is active both night and day. FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET
Feeds on small mammals when available as well as insects and some plant matter.
Probably monogamous. Small litters with one to three offspring.
SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS None known. ♦
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