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a genus of mammals of the family Soricidae of the order Insectivora. Body length, 3–15 cm; tail length, 2.5–10 cm. Savi’s pygmy shrew (Suncus etruscus) is the smallest mammal. There are about 20 species of Suncus, distributed in Africa, southern Europe, and southern Asia as far east as the Philippines and New Guinea. A few species live in meadows and marshy areas; they sometimes settle in human habitats. Feeding primarily on insects, they often eat meat and grain. The Suncus are nocturnal animals. They reproduce year-round, bearing two to five young in a litter.