Rufous elephant shrew

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Rufous elephant shrew[1]
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Macroscelidea
Family: Macroscelididae
Genus: Elephantulus
Species: E. rufescens
Binomial name
Elephantulus rufescens
(Peters, 1878)
Rufous Elephant Shrew area.png
Rufous elephant shrew range

The rufous elephant shrew or rufous sengi (Elephantulus rufescens) or East African long-eared elephant-shrew is a species of elephant shrew in the Macroscelididae family. It is found in Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, but is most common in southern Africa, particularly Namibia and the Cape province of South Africa.[3] Its natural habitats are dry savanna and subtropical or tropical dry shrubland.[2]


E. rufescens occupies the drywood land and grassland zone of East Africa and southern Africa.[4]


E. rufescens exhibited no secondary dimorphism. Its' probosis is long and flexible. The species' tails are dark-brown and can be long up to the its' head-to-tail length. Females E. refescens have three pair of teats and the males have internal testes. Both adults and juveniles E. rufescens are the same in color. However, adults E. rufescens have white feet while juveniles' feet are brown. [5]

Ecology, Diet, and Behavior[edit]

E. rufescens are active throughout the day. With peak in activity at dusk and dawn while having a midday rest. The males usually spend most of theirs time cleaning the foraging trails. Except for foraging, all activities are done in these trails. Trail acts as an important measure for escaping from predators. Insects form the major food resource of their diet in the dry season while seeds were consume during the period of rain.[6]
E. rufescens are found to be fair monogamous. However, members of a monogamous pair spend little time together and limited in social interaction. They live in a matriatric society in which the female, of the monogamous pair, usually dominate the male. [7]


  1. ^ Schlitter, D. A. (2005). Wilson, D. E.; Reeder, D. M, eds. Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. p. 83. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494. 
  2. ^ a b FitzGibbon, C., Perrin, M. & Stuart, C. (2008). Elephantulus rufescens. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 29 December 2008.
  3. ^ Rania Awaad. "Elephantulus rufescens East African long-eared elephant-shrew". Animal Diversity Web. Retrieved April 15, 2014. 
  4. ^ B. R. NEAL. "". African Journal of Ecology. Retrieved April 15, 2014. 
  5. ^ Fred W. Koontz and Nancy J. Koeper. "Elephantulus rufescens". The American Society of Mammalogists. Retrieved April 15, 2014. 
  6. ^ B. R. NEAL. "". African Journal of Ecology. Retrieved April 15, 2014. 
  7. ^ Lumpkin, Susan, and Fred W. Koontz. "Social and Sexual Behavior of the Rufous Elephant-Shrew (Elephantulus rufescens) in Captivity.". JSTOR. Retrieved April 15, 2014. 

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