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Diets of the Shrews Sorex araneus L. and Sorex minutus L. in Wytham Grassland

J. C. Pernetta
Journal of Animal Ecology
Vol. 45, No. 3 (Oct., 1976), pp. 899-912
DOI: 10.2307/3588
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3588
Page Count: 14
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Diets of the Shrews Sorex araneus L. and Sorex minutus L. in Wytham Grassland
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Abstract

A method of preparing the stomach and gut contents of small mammals is described and quantification of the diet of two species of shrew performed. The diet of Sorex araneus and S. minutus in Brachypodium pinnatum grassland on the Oxford University Estate at Wytham over an eighteen-month period is described. It is shown that areas of dietary overlap between the two species in the same habitat are small; that the two species have dietary areas peculiar to themselves, and thus that competition for food between the species is reduced. The pigmy shrew is shown to feed on the surface fauna, whilst the common shrew eats more burrowing animals.

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