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The genus Cryptotis is a group of relatively small shrews with short ears which are usually not visible and short tails.
They are found mainly in Central America; the Least Shrew, C. parva, is the only species of the genus found north of Mexico. The genus occurs as far south as northern Peru and as far east as western Venezuela in South America. It is the only insectivore genus found south of Guatemala. They are red-toothed shrews; species in this group have 30 teeth. Since 1992, Neal Woodman (in corporation with Robert Timm) at the United States National Museum has been in the process of revising the genus. To date, this has resulted in an increase of number of species from 12 in 1992 to 30 now.
The list of species is:
- gracilis group
- Enders' Small-eared Shrew (C. endersi)
- Talamancan Small-eared Shrew (C. gracilis)
- mexicana group
- Montane Small-eared Shrew (C. alticola)
- Goldman's Small-eared Shrew (C. goldmani)
- Goodwin's Small-eared Shrew (C. goodwini)
- Jackson's Small-eared Shrew (C. griseoventris)
- Honduran Broad-clawed Shrew (C. magnimana)
- Mexican Small-eared Shrew (C. mexicana)
- Nelson's Small-eared Shrew (C. nelsoni)
- Obscure Small-eared Shrew (C. obscura)
- Oaxaca Small-eared Shrew (C. peregrina)
- Phillips' Small-eared Shrew (C. phillipsii)
- nigrescens group
- Short-clawed Small-eared Shrew (C. brachyonyx)
- Colombian Small-eared Shrew (C. colombiana)
- Honduran Small-eared Shrew (C. hondurensis)
- Big Small-eared Shrew (C. magna)
- Maya Small-eared Shrew ( C. mayensis)
- Darién Small-eared Shrew (C. mera)
- Merriam's Small-eared Shrew (C. merriami)
- Blackish Small-eared Shrew (C. nigrescens)
- parva group
- Cryptotis orophila
- Least Shrew (C. parva)
- thomasi group
- Crypotis equatoris (has been called "Ecuadorian Small-eared Shrew", but this causes confusion with C. montivaga)
- Medellín Small-eared Shrew (C. medellinia)
- Merida Small-eared Shrew (C. meridensis)
- Ecuadorian Small-eared Shrew (C. montivaga)
- Peruvian Small-eared Shrew (C. peruviensis)
- Scaly-footed Small-eared Shrew (C. squamipes)
- Páramo de Tamá Small-eared Shrew (C. tamensis)
- Thomas' Small-eared Shrew (C. thomasi) (including C. avia Andean Small-eared Shrew)
- Pine, R. H., Woodman, N. & Timm, R.M. 2002. Rediscovery of Enders’s small-eared shrew, Cryptotis endersi (Insectivora: Soricidae), with a redescription of the species. Mammalian Biology (Zeitschrift für Säugetierkunde) 67:372–377.
- Woodman, N. 2002. A new species of small-eared shrew from Colombia and Venezuela (Mammalia: Soricomorpha: Soricidae: Genus Cryptotis). Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 115(2):249-272.
- Woodman, N. 2003. A new small-eared shrew of the Cryptotis nigrescens-group from Colombia (Mammalia: Soricomorpha: Soricidae). Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 116:853–872.
- Woodman, N., Cuartas C., C.A. & Delgado V., C.A. 2003. The humerus of Cryptotis colombiana and its bearing on the phylogenetic relationships of the species (Soricomorpha: Soricidae). Journal of Mammalogy 84:832–839.
- Woodman, N. & Timm, R.M. 1992. A new species of small-eared shrew, genus Cryptotis (Insectivora: Soricidae), from Honduras. Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 105(1):1-12.
- Woodman, N. & Timm, R.M. 1993. Intraspecific and interspecific variation in the Cryptotis nigrescens species complex of small-eared shrews (Insectivora: Soricidae), with the description of a new species from Colombia. Fieldiana Zoology (n.s.) 74:i-iii+1-30, 30 September 1993.
- Woodman, N. & Timm, R.M. 1999. Relationships among broad-clawed shrews of the Cryptotis goldmani-group (Mammalia: Insectivora: Soricidae). Fieldiana Zoology (n.s.) 91:i-iv+1-35, 13 January 1999.
- Woodman, N. & Timm, R.M. 2000. Taxonomy and evolutionary relationships of Phillips' small-eared shrew, Cryptotis phillipsii (Schaldach, 1966), from Oaxaca, Mexico (Mammalia: Rodentia: Soricidae). Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 113:339-355.
- Vivar, E., Pacheco, V. & Valqui, M. 1997. A new species of Cryptotis (Insectivora: Soricidae) from northern Peru. American Museum Novitates 3202:1-15, 29 Augustus 1997.
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