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Northern Tree Shrew


India to southeast Asia


Tropical rain forests.


The tree shrews are mouse-like in appearance, but have long, pointed snouts. They have tiny sharp claws on their hands and feet for grasping trees. The fur on their backs and limbs are golden brown in color and under-parts are a lighter cream to white.

Northern Tree Shrew Click to View Bigger Picture

These mostly arboreal (tree-dwelling) animals are unusual among small mammals because they are active by day (diurnal). Tree shrews are very nervous, inquisitive, and generally aggressive animals. Living in pairs, they will vigorously defend their territory against other shrews. They are extremely active and have alternating periods of foraging and resting every hour or so throughout the 24 hour day.


Gestation for tree shrews lasts 40-50 days at which time the female gives birth to 2-3 young.

Northern Tree Shrew
Class: mammal
Genus: Tupaia
Species: belangeri
Length: Head to tail: 5 1/3-8 3/4 inches
Average Lifespan: 15
Wild Diet: Insects and lizards
Predators: The main natural predators are birds of prey, small carnivores and snakes.
USFWS Status: Not Listed
CITES Status: Not Listed
Where at the Zoo? Small Animal Building: Temperate Zone

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