Mammal Identification

Pygmy Shrew Sorex minutus

Identification features

Photo:Derek Whiteley

  • Narrow pointy snout with obvious whiskers
  • Inconspicous ears
  • Tail length is more than 50% of the length of the body and head
  • Brown coloured fur all over the body which has a two-toned colour (mid-brown back, paler underside)
  • Domed head

Pygmy shrews can be found in almost any habitat with sufficient vegetation cover, most commonly in hedgerows, scrub, grassland and deciduous woodland.

shrew skins: Photo Debbie Court

Comparison of Common shrew (top) and Pygmy shrew skins
Note the relatively longer tail of the Pygmy shrew

Other identification clues


Photo: Debbie Court

Pygmy shrew bones can be recorded in owl pellets. Like all Derbyshire species of shrews, they have red tips to the teeth.

Status in Derbyshire information

Photos: Steve Lonsdale