102050 Water Shrew Neomys fodiens Length 12-17cm Distinctive bi-coloured shrew, usually seen near freshwater. Swims well. Adult has dense fur: blackish upperparts and flanks contrast with whitish underparts. In water, fur traps a layer of air that makes submerged animal look silvery. Fringes of hairs on tail, and on relatively large hind feet, assist swimming. Utters high-pitched squeaks. Widespread except in N Scotland and on islands. Favours slow-flowing and well-vegetated streams and watercress beds. Pollution and disturbance are agents of its decline.