Shrews, these small rodent-like mammals are most often confused with rats and mouses, although they are not part of the same family, nor do they live in the same habitat.
These somewhat tiny mole is a very interesting animal in most ways than one, but today we’re going to talk about their life expectancy, and how long do they commonly live.
How long do shrews live?
Shrews don’t have a very long lifespan, but rather a very short life expectancy, with most of them only hoping to live up to 2 years.
That being said, some shrews manage to live up past the 2 years mark, although this is not the common thing amongst these specie, and most of them won’t be able to be that old.
How long do shrews live in the wild?
Before we get to know how long do shrews live in the wild, let’s talk a little bit about what “the wild” means, and where do these tiny animals actually live to understand how it affects their lifespan.
Shrews are usually found on the ground, but mostly beneath it, hidden in abandoned burrows, gardens and different tree and sometimes even in very superficial holes, all to hide from their natural predators.
That being said, shrews face a lot of natural predators such as owls, snakes, foxes, coyotes and sometimes even hawks, which, of course, makes them a very easy target to get, which shortens their life expectancy.
So, to sum things up, shrews get to live a very short life up in their natural habitat since they are constantly being exposed to many natural predators without a way to actually protect themselves.
This means that shrews living in the wild get to live anywhere from 1 up to 2 years if they’re lucky, although chances are they’ll get to live longer in captivity.
How long do shrews live in captivity?
Like we mentioned before, shrews actually do live longer in captivity than in the wild, being able to live up to 3 years, but even then, they don’t have a very long life expectancy.
However, the fact that they can live away from their natural predators does increase their lifespan for at least a year, since they get to live in optimal conditions since birth.
It is important to also mention that shrews living in captivity do maintain the same type of diet they do in the wild, meaning they continue to eat all types of small insects (although they sometimes can eat bigger ones such as spiders and grasshoppers).
Life expectancy of shrews according to the species
There are different species of shrews out in the wild, however, they all have a very similar lifespan, meaning they’ll get to live anywhere from 2 to 3 years.