Assorted news

1. There is a proposal (Hope et al. 2019) to split pygmy shrew (the North American one) into two species, based entirely on molecular data. The western form would be called Sorex eximius. The two forms apparently co-occur in eastern N Dakota and probably E Manitoba; everything east of there is still S. hoyi. I’ve been sent PDF of the paper in case someone needs it.
2. Some people I know have had to cancel expeditions to Ethiopia because of deteriorating security situation in the countryside, particularly in the south. Drivers just refuse to go outside Addis Ababa. Keep this in mind if you are planning a trip.
3. There are two new Facebook groups that might be of interest to some people here: Mammal Watching East Asia and Млекопитающие России (Mammals of Russia). The latter is currently in Russian but the moderators speak English and likely wouldn’t object to English-speaking members joining and asking questions; some of the members are professional zoologists particularly good at IDing small mammals and mammal tracks of NE Palearctic.


  • Alex Schouten

    The situation in Ethiopia is not as bad as described. I am in the county for 5,5 weeks now. A few weeks ago there were troubles in the south (especially around Goba). I was there at that time, but it’s quiet again. It’s advisable to ask around about the safety situation in the Oromia region. They are the trouble makers, the other tribes are fine. I haven’t heard of drivers who refused to drive outside Addis. I just had a driver for a few days and he told me there are no issues right now. In the north there were no troubles at all and everything is very quiet.

  • Vladimir Dinets

    Yes, I heard that things are getting better. Too late for my friends who already had to cancel their trips.

  • Vladimir Dinets

    A review of Sulawesi shrews. Turns out there’s more endemic species than thought. One is formally described and is easy to ID, so check your photos.

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