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    Author(s): Thomas J. Maier; Katherine L. Doyle
    Date: 2006
    Source: Mammalia: 86-89.
    Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
    Station: Northern Research Station
    PDF: Download Publication  (51.56 KB)


    Large aggregations of shrews have been reported and various explanations offered for this seemingly rare behavior; however, there has been little evidence to support any particular interpretation. We observed two small aggregations of highly active vocalizing Sorex cinereus while performing wildlife surveys in forested habitats in central Massachusetts, USA. These observations, in conjunction with a review of other reports, including genetic analyses, strongly suggest that such aggregations of adult Sorex are associated with mating behavior, more readily observed during periods of high population density. Published accounts of such behavior may be rare because primarily large aggregations have been reported; however, smaller breeding aggregations may be common.

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    Maier, Thomas J.; Doyle, Katherine L. 2006. Aggregations of masked shrews (Sorex cinereus): density related mating behavior?. Mammalia: 86-89.


    breeding groups, Massachusetts, mating behavior, mating chases, Sorex cinereus, vocalizations

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