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African animals, Elephant shrews, Macroscelididae, Elephantulus rufescens, East African Long-Eared Elephant Shrew

Scientific Name: Elephantulus rufescens
Common Name: East African Long-Eared Elephant Shrew
Distribution: restricted to Africa. They are most common in southern Africa, specifically in Namibia, the Cape province of South Africa, and extreme southern Botswana. They can also be found from south-eastern Sudan and north-eastern Somalia to central Tanzania
Description: Although the common name of Elephantulus rufescens is 'elephant shrew', it is not a shrew nor is it related to elephants. It gets its name from its long mobile snout, which it can move around rather like an elephant’s trunk. It uses its snout to search for worms, ants, termites and other invertebrates. Its legs are long and thin; its hind limbs are longer than its forelimbs, allowing it to jump and hop. It has a long tail, and large eyes and ears. It also has long, soft fur; the upper parts are sandy brown, buff gray or buff orange and the under parts are white, or greyish 
Difference in Sex:
Average Weight: 25 to 60 g
Habitat: Elephantulus rufescens are found in a variety of habitats including open plains, arid lowlands, savannas, deserts, thorn bush, and tropical forests. Most will take over old rodent burrows. The majority of Elephant shrews are forest dwellers that often live in burrows, ground depressions, rock crevices, termite mound crevices or under logs. Some elephant shrews construct nests on the forest floor, in which they sleep when not active. They also construct a network of paths to help them move around their territory. These trails are also used as escape routes from predators, such as snakes and small mammals
Habits: Elephantulus rufescens usually live singly or in pairs, although they have been seen to also live in small colonies . They are usually diurnal; active mainly during the day, but can be nocturnal during hot weather, moonlit nights, and when threatened by diurnal predators. A pair occupies a territory that averages 0.34 ha.
Main feeding time: diurnal
Size: Length: 170 to 310 mm
Gestation: 57 to 65 days
Number of young at birth: 1 to 2
Age: 1  year
Diet: The diet consists mainly of termites and ants, but also includes shoots, berries and roots 
Enemies: Hawks, Raptors,  Snakes, other carnivores. Elephantulus rufescens have a keen sense of smell that helps them to sense food and danger. When pursued, they hide in any available shelter. They also make a series of escape routes radiating out from their nests to feeding areas so that they can quickly escape if being pursued by a predator. Few predators actually raid their nest sites perhaps because the young mature quickly and leave the nest
Interesting facts: