Sorex araneus

Vys

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As my mind wanders and i kill the little piece of internetquota I have left instead of reading about inheritance of classes, I wonder about the common shrews cats often drag into the house..they never eat them, and from the start I got to hear this is because they(the shrews) are poisonous. Is this so? If so, poisonous to who? Tarantulas as well? Or would shrews caught in traps be viable food for bigger T's? (provided you knew there were no pesticides around) ? I imagine other stuff than pesticides could be in or on the little things..like parasites and stuff, but how big of an issue is this on average?

EDIT : how 'color=grey gives a green shade I know not. Perhaps because these color tags aren't supposed to be nested?
 

Henry Kane

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Hi. I do know that it's common behavior for well adjusted cats to bring a "gift" of dead prey. It's a sign of affection from the cat believe it or not. My cats have done the same with field mice and anoles and geckos. (that was when I lived down south) I have seen a relatives cat bring freshly killed chipmunks as well. In all cases, they never eat the prey, just bring it home for you to find. It looks like your cat is certainly fond of you.
I don't know anything about Shrews but I wouldn't recommend feeding any wild caught rodents or the like. For one, even the smallest wild rodents can be quite aggressive, especially when cornered. For another, there's the risk of disease, parasites, and pesticides. If the idea is to nourish the T, I would consider these things an issue.
I've never heard of a venomous mammal before athough I may have missed something somewhere.

Atrax
 

Phillip

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Shrews aren't poisonous...

They are in fact venomous. Yes a venomous mammal just like a Platypus with the exception that the Platypus venom is used for combat where the shrew uses it to subdue prey. It's not suppossed to affect anything except the small inverts and such that they eat. These are the only two mammals that have venom and yes I watch far too much animal planet. :)
Phil
 
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Vys

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Hmmm. Thanks for both your replies.
Yes, I have now read that they are supposed to be venomous...although I've never seen a cat actually eat a shrew. I have seen them eat squirrels, birds, fish, mice, rats, but never shrews. I don't know, perhaps these dead ones were just 'gifts', but I have a vague memory of several people saying cats won't eat them 'cause they're poisonous (to the cats)
This might be pish posh of course...
Hm,, if they're venomous btw, they still need to keep the venom in their bodies, no ? :)
 

Vayu Son

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><

"The short-tailed shrew is a ferocious mammal for its size. It bites its victim in the throat or face. Its saliva is poisonous and paralyses small victims almost instantly. It then drags its new food to its nest. It sometimes starts to eat its victim while it is still alive. Luckily, the venom or poison is not dangerous to people but it can leave a painful bite for several days."

-http://www.alienexplorer.com/ecology/m117.html



they sound like pretty interesting predators.... I believe the venom is mixed with their saliva. So cooked shrew shouldnt be a problem to anyone.

-V
 

Henry Kane

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Re: Shrews aren't poisonous...

Originally posted by Phillip
They are in fact venemous. Yes a venemous mammal just like a Platypus with the exception that the Platypus venom is used for combat where the shrew uses it to subdue prey. It's not suppossed to affect anything except the small inverts and such that they eat. These are the only two mammals that have venom and yes I watch far too much animal planet. :)
Phil
Whoa! Learn something new everyday, huh? I was aware of the male Platypus' venom, namely because the bite of Scolopendra subspinipes is often compared to it in terms of pain. I wasn't sure to list it as a mammal. (Too busy to research it at the moment.)I guess they are then. Shrews however, I had no idea. Thanks for the info Phil. Pretty cool.

Later.

Atrax
 

MrT

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I love cats. I've had a cat my whole life. Over 40 yrs.
I was reading about free roaming cats. Cats that have a home, a place to eat, sleep ect. But are aloud roam around outside. Like mine.

It said that these free roaming cats are responsible for 80 million song bird deaths a year, in the US and England alone. It said that these cats don't eat their prey, but spend an average of 20 -30 mins. torturing them. Its not just birds either. Any small mammal or reptile they can get their teeth in.

Their killing machines..
I've never looked at my cat the same way since.

Ernie
 

kosh

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yeah ...all of my cats...the indoor ones and the outdoor ones will bring me "gifts" from time to time....the indoor cats catch and kill the occassional palmetto bug that is dumb enough to get in the house and they bring them to me......the outdoor cats have brought me almost anything they can catch....adult birds, baby birds, field mice (or deer mice), chipmunks, skinks........and if we dont clean up the outdoor "gift" soon enough they will eat most of it...they will usually leave the head or something though (and my cats are all well fed fatties so they have no reason to eat that stuff)........
and i have read that Felis Domesticus is the ONLY other creature on earth (besides man) that kills for pure sport!!!!
think about it.....i cant think of anything other than man and the domestic cat that does this!!!
 

Wade

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The shrew venom is indeed in the saliva. The related soledons (basically large, tropical shrews) also have this.

I think the Platypus is the only mammal that actually possesses a venom delivery structure, a hollow spur on the rear leg (males only).

Aside from the venom risk, I would still never, ever consider feeding a live shrew to a tarantula or other invert. Shrews are vorcious predators with very high metabolisms, and will kill and eat almost anything, including animals several times their own size. They have been know to kill adult rats in captivity!

Wade
 

Code Monkey

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<Childish comment alert>

Am I the only person who keeps glancing at this thread title and thinking "Sore anus" before I read it closer again :D
 

Lycanthrope

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Absolutely amazing. Here i thought the platypus was the only venemous mammal. Thats the wonderous thing about living organisms, you never run out of new things to discover. oh and ive caught myself making the same assessment twice code monkey lol..
 

krucz36

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the posts by wade & code monkey kind of represent arachnopets in a nutshell, don't they? well-considered, thoughtful and informative, then "sore anus".
CM, you're lucky you found that yerbamate, mister. =)
 

krucz36

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how about venoumous lizards? from what i can gather the only ones with venom delivery structures, like wade mentioned, are the beaded lizard in mexico and the gila monster in the SW USA. i'm not sure of proper names or ranges or anything, just trying to poke the conversation along.
those Komodo dragons are apparently capable of delivery a big giant load of bacteria and toxins in their saliva, like a shrew, which is where the venom effect comes from.
corrections welcome!
 

Phillip

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you are correct...

The Gila and Beaded are the only two lizards and yes the Komodo is saliva full of bacteria.
Phil
 

kellygirl

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Originally posted by Code Monkey
<Childish comment alert>

Am I the only person who keeps glancing at this thread title and thinking "Sore anus" before I read it closer again :D

actually, no..... i did a double take when i saw it.:8o

kellygirl
 

Wade

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Beadeds and Gilas are in the same genus, Heloderma, and have grooves on the teeth down which venom travels, a very simple delivery system, nothing like the comparatively high-tech fangs of the vipers.

In the case of the shrew, there is actually a venom gland, it's not bacteria. They just lack specialized teeth for delivering it.

I read awhile back that research was being done on the immune system of Komodo dragons. This could have possible applications for humans! This paticular team was to take blood and saliva samples from wild lizards, and every one of them became violently ill.

Wade
 

Wade

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NEWS FLASH!!!

For some reason, the "sore anus" joke made me start thinking about the name, so I cracked open "Walker's Mammals of the World" and looked up shrews.

The genus Sorex, the long-tailed shrews, apparently do NOT possess venom, at least I can't find mention of them having it, while it is the genus Blarinia, the short-tailed shrews DO have it.

Wade
 

krucz36

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it seems like scoring samples from a huge mean dirty-mouthed lizard could get your ass violently bitten as well.
as far as gilas are concerned, their venom comes from a gland, then travels down these tooth grooves? that's pretty wild. do they end up swallowing it? freaky nature.
 
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Ok, for all of you whiz kids, now do you know what is the only poisonous bird? No, I didn't say venomous, but poisonous?
Best...
Jim
 

krucz36

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marabou stork?
hey, go register! it doesn't hurt a bit, i swear
 
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