Found in many different habitats, from coastal and boreal forests to riparian shrub thickets in the mountains and in the subarctic tundra-taiga transition at higher latitudes (van Zyll de Jong 1983, Nagorsen 1996). Requires dense understory ground cover in moist or wet situations (Belk et al. 1990, Doyle 1990, Hawes 1977, MacDonald 1980). Other habitats include damp meadows surrounded by coniferous forest, in grass among spruce-fir, mid-elevation fir-larch, along streams and rivers in high prairie, mossy banks of small streams, and sphagnum bogs. Rarely found more than a few meters from water in summer (Ingles 1965, NatureServe).
Belk, M. C., C. L. Pritchett, and H. D. Smith. 1990. Patterns of microhabitat use by Sorex monticolus in summer. The Great Basin Naturalist 50: 387-389.
￼￼￼Doyle, A. T. 1990. Use of riparian and upland habitats by small mammals. Journal of Mammalogy 71: 14- 23.
Hawes, M. L. 1977. Home range, territoriality, and ecological separation in sympatric shrews, Sorex vagrans and Sorex obscurus. Journal of Mammalogy 57: 404-406.
Ingles, L.G. 1965. Mammals of the Pacific states. Stanford Univ. Press, Stanford, CA. 506 p.
MacDonald, S. O. 1980. Habitats of small mammals and birds: Evaluating the effects of agricultural development in the Delta Junction area, Alaska. Unpublished report for the State of Alaska, Department of Natural Resources, Division of Lands and Water Management, Fairbanks.
￼￼Nagorsen, D.W. 1996. Opossums, shrews and moles of British Columbia. Royal British Columbia Museum Handbook. UCB Press, Vancouver BC. 149 pp.
NatureServe. 2006. NatureServe Explorer: An online encyclopedia of life. Version 5.0. NatureServe, Arlington, VA. Available http://www.natureserve.org/explorer.
van Zyll de Jong, C. G. 1983. Handbook of Canadian mammals. Part 1. Marsupials and insectivores. National Museum of Natural History.