2,801Grants to


Eastern Cordillera Small-footed Shrew (Cryptotis brachyonyx)

Mohamed bin Zayed Species project number 232532134

Assessing the conservation status of the rarest shrews (Soricidae: Cryptotis) of the Northern Andes.

Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation (Project No. 232532134) - Eastern Cordillera Small-footed Shrew - Awarded $12,500 on November 21, 2023Shrews have been neglected in conservation efforts worldwide. Many species have restricted distributions and metabolic restrictions that can be prejudicial in the current biodiversity crisis. 



In this project, we have three targeted species of shrews: Cryptotis brachionyx, Cryptotis niausa, and Cryptotis perijensis. These species are considered Data Deficient by the IUCN, and one (C. brachyonyx) may be extinct. Each of the three species is known from < 10 localities, and key information such as distribution area, population parameters (size and trends, movements), and habitat (habitat preference, quality, and trends) are unknown. The lack of information has prevented appropriate conservation assessments and plans. Finally, all three species are limited to Andean ecosystems which have been extensively transformed by human activities and are vulnerable to climatic change.


We will contribute to obtain the information of three key parameters necessary to assess the conservation status of species under the Data Deficient Category and to plan future conservation strategies: distribution area, population estimates, and habitat type and current threats. We will disseminate that pivotal information in open-access journal articles and databases.


Specifically, we will:

1. Clarify the distribution of three rare species of shrews. We will conduct field surveys (one per species) covering the potential distribution areas of each species to estimate the Extent of Occurrence (EOO) and Area of Occupancy (AOO) for each species.

2. Estimate the abundance and rarity of the three species of shrews based on information gathered during the field expeditions. We will use an intensive sampling strategy using complementary techniques to ensure robust relative abundance estimations through the capture of individuals, and genetic analysis to confirm the species identification and assess cryptic diversity.

3. Assess potential conservation threats for each of the three species in each study area. We will use the information on the presence gathered in the expedition and current forest coverage to calculate the remnant forest area and deforestation trends to estimate conservation pressures on the distribution area for each species.


Currently we are conducting the field expeditions!


Some excitings news on our project soon. 


Project 232532134 location - Colombia, South America