The crab-eating mongoose (Herpestes urva) is a mongoose species ranging from the northeastern Indian subcontinent to Southeast Asia, southern China and Taiwan. It is listed as Near Threatened by IUCN.
It is generally grey in color, with a broad white stripe on its neck extending from its cheeks to its chest. Its throat is steel-gray with white ends of its hair, rendering a salt and pepper appearance. Its hind feet possess hairy soles. Its tail is short and homogeneously colored with a fairer tip.
The body length of crab-eating mongoose is 36–52 cm (14–20 in) and body weight 1–2.3 kg (2.2–5.1 lb).
Distribution and habitat
Crab-eating mongooses are common in Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, northern Myanmar and northeastern India. They are rare in Bangladesh. In Nepal, they occur in the lower and central hilly regions.
Ecology and behaviour
Crab-eating mongooses are usually active in the mornings and evenings, and were observed in groups of up to four individuals. They are supposed to be good swimmers, and hunt along the banks of streams and close to water.
Despite their common name, their diet consists not only of crabs, but also just about anything else they can catch, including fish, snails, frogs, rodents, birds, reptiles, and insects.
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