Sao Tome Shrew Facts
- Most notably, scientific opinion regards the Sao Tome Shrew, Crocidura thomensis, as the 7th rarest creature on earth.
- For multiple reasons, the IUCN also currently lists this remarkable creature as Critically Endangered.
- In addition, the principal threats to its existence remain its own extremely limited habitat range and ongoing deforestation of that habitat.
- The introduction of invasive species has also become a threat, due to increased competition for food in such a limited area.
Sao Tome Shrew Physical Description
Rather sadly, sightings of the remarkable Sao Tome Shrew also remain quite rare, thus little reliable information about it exists. In addition, the majority of what scientists know about it comes from observations of one individual captured in 1982.
The creature has rarely been photographed, as well. It has rather small eyes which makes its eyesight quite limited.
It usually has dark brown fur and a pink tail. Further, the stomach displays pale, and uniquely, the teeth – white and not yellow as common in other shrews.
Finally, this tiny animal rarely reaches more than 3 in (7.6 cm) in length.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Mammalia
- Order: Soricomorpha
- Family: Soricidae
- Genus: Crocidura
- Species: Crocidura thomensis
Sao Tome Shrew Distribution, Habitat, and Conservation
Due to the remoteness and rugged nature of the terrain of its habitat, humans know little about Crocidura thomensis. Also, conservation efforts have generally failed, due to a lack of sufficient information about the species.
Furthermore, the majority of individuals sighted inhabit regions of montane forests on the island.
The animal also appears to primarily feed on algae, seagrass, and berries. Yet, some experts believe it may also feed on small invertebrates as well.