Overview

Distribution

Range Description

This species is found on Java, Borneo, Sumatra and the Natuna Islands in Indonesia and on Borneo (Sabah, Sarawak) in Malaysia (Wilson and Reeder, 2005); it is inferred to be found in Brunei (W. Duckworth in litt. 2006). Reported by van Balen (1914) from the Dieng Plateau, but present status there unknown; Bukit Suharto (Yasuma, 1994) and Sungai Wain (G. Frederiksson pers. comm.) in East Kalimantan, south of the Mahakam River. It is tentatively recorded from Tanjung Putting National Park in Borneo. It has been recorded at a wide range of elevations but may be more common at lower elevations (Payne et al. 1985). For example, this species has been found higher than 2,000 m, (Jentink 1895; Lawrence 1939; Neal 1986), at 1,000 m on the Kelabit Plateau in Sarawak, Malaysia, and as low as 250 m in western Java (Forbes 1879).
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Geographic Range

Mydaus javanensis has a limited, isolated distribution on the Indonesian islands of Sumatra, Java, Borneo, and North Natuna Islands (Nowak 1997; Long and Killingley 1983).

Biogeographic Regions: oriental (Native )

Other Geographic Terms: island endemic

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Physical Description

Morphology

Physical Description

Mydaus javanensis are classified as true badgers. They were once classifed with the skunks because of their black and white coloration and strong scent glands, but the accesory cusp on the inner projection of the upper fourth premolar and the large front digging feet places M. javanensis with Meles and Taxidea.

Coloration of M. javanensis varies from dark black to blackish brown. All have a white patch on the top of the head. A white mid-dorsal stripe extends from the patch on the head and is either interrupted or extends posteriorly down the spine to the tail. Fur is sparse on the belly. Hair on the neck stands nearly erect. Their eyes are small and the pinna (or ear flap) are vestigial.

The body of M. javanensis is small, squat, heavy, and nearly plantigrade. They have a long, pointed, mobile snout, short, muscular legs, long, strong recurved claws on the front feet, and a short tail. The musculature forms a web that extends to the base of the foreclaws. The toes are bound together as far as the base of the claws. Their nose to tailbase ranges from 370 to 510mm and their tail length ranges from 50 to 75mm. All M. javanensis have a well-developed anal scent gland.

The cheek teeth have low, rounded cusps with circular formed crowns (Nowak 1997; Long and Killingley 1983).

Range mass: 1.4 to 3.6 kg.

Range length: 370 to 510 mm.

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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
This species is found in secondary forests and open grounds such as gardens adjacent to forests (Payne and Francis 1985) and for similar uses in Sumatra (Holden 2006). There is no real particular evidence that it needs primary forest. It feeds on bird eggs, carrion, insects, worms, and plants (Long and Killingley 1983; Neal and Cheeseman 1996; Payne and Francis 1985). Litter size is usually two to three (Wood 1865). It is nocturnal, sheltering in underground burrows during the day (Hwang and Larivière 2003).

Systems
  • Terrestrial
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Mydaus javanensis are montane and are seldom found on the plains. They are found often above 7,000 ft. in elevation, but may occur below 4,000 ft. and even as low as 850 ft. in West Java. Most M. javanensis inhabit shallow burrows underground. However, in Borneo they inhabit caves at high elevations (Long and Killingley 1983).

Range elevation: 250 (low) m.

Average elevation: 2100 m.

Habitat Regions: tropical ; terrestrial

Terrestrial Biomes: forest ; mountains

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Trophic Strategy

Food Habits

Mydaus javanensis uses its strong forelimbs, long claws, and 'pig-like' snout to root through soils and feed. At night, these animals forage for insects and worms. They feed mainly on invertebrates and plant material (Nowak 1997; Long and Killingley 1983).

Foods eaten include: worms, especially earth worms, insects, insect grubs, bird eggs, carrion and plant material.

Animal Foods: eggs; carrion ; insects; terrestrial non-insect arthropods; terrestrial worms

Plant Foods: fruit

Primary Diet: carnivore (Insectivore , Vermivore)

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Associations

Predation

When endangered, M. javanensis uses its well-developed scent gland. It will raise its tail and then emit a pungent, foul, milky green secretion. The secretion can be ejected with some accuracy. The secretion is nauseating and damaging when it comes in contact with the predator. Humans have fainted from the stench. Dogs have been asphyxiated by the fluid or even blinded when struck in the eye. Mydaus javanensis is quite fierce and growls and bites when handled.

It is a slow mover and can only run away at a trot (about the speed of a human's walk) for about 100 meters (Jackson 2001; Nowak 1997; Long and Killingley 1983).

Known Predators:

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Life History and Behavior

Reproduction

Females have six teats-four pectoral and two inguinal. They are estimated to give birth to two or three offspring per litter. The litter is brought up in the underground burrows (Jackson 2001; Long and Killingley 1983).

Average number of offspring: 2-3.

Key Reproductive Features: gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); sexual ; fertilization (Internal ); viviparous

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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2008

Assessor/s
Long, B., Hon, J., Azlan M.J. & Duckworth, J.W.

Reviewer/s
Belant, J. (Small Carnivore Red List Authority) & Schipper, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)

Contributor/s

Justification
This species is listed as Least Concern, pending more survey work, or simply collation of the many existing incidental records. It has a large range within which forest cover is changing rapidly; but there are too many records away from old-growth forest for it to be considered an old-growth forest-dependent species, thus major declines cannot be inferred by ongoing forest conversion in Sumatra and Borneo. There is no evidence of it being targeted in hunting or trading for food or medicine at sufficient levels to drive population declines at a pace to come near to even NT.
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Indonesian law has protected M. javanensis since 1979. Gunung Gede Pangrango National Park (15,000 ha.) in Java and Danau Sentarum National Park (80,000 ha.) in West Kalimantan, Borneo are two protected park areas where M. javanensis are found (Jackson 2001).

US Federal List: no special status

CITES: no special status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: least concern

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Population

Population
It is very difficult to assess the current population status of this species, as people tend to find them incidentally, and so reports often do not reach the public domain (W. Duckworth pers. comm.). Its distribution seems to be patchy (Payne et al. 1985).

Population Trend
Unknown
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Threats

Major Threats
On Java, the anal gland secretion is used to make perfume (Long and Killingley 1983), and some rural people eat the flesh of this species (Nowak 1999). It is also used in traditional medicine to cure fever or rheumatism (Nowak 1999).
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
This species is most likely found in many protected areas within its range, and has been reported in at least two protected areas, Gunung Gede Pangrango National Park on Java and Danau Sentarum National Park on Borneo. It is not protected in Sarawak, but it is protected in Sabah (Wildlife Conservation Enactment 1998, 1997).
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Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Economic Importance for Humans: Negative

As they turn up soil to forage for insects and worms, M. javanensis often uproot freshly planted seeds on agricultural lands. The roots of crop plants may also be eaten, which damages sprouting plants (Long and Killingley 1983).

Negative Impacts: crop pest

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Economic Importance for Humans: Positive

In the past, natives of the island diluted the fluid from the scent gland to manufacture perfumes for their Javanese sultans.

Some islanders will hunt and kill M. javanensis, immediately remove the scent glands and eat the meat.

Drink mixtures of the skin shavings and water have also been made as traditional 'cures' for fever or rheumatism (Jackson 2001; Long and Killingley 1983).

Positive Impacts: food ; source of medicine or drug

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Wikipedia

Sunda stink badger

The Sunda stink badger (Mydaus javanensis), also called the Javan stink badger, teledu, Malay stink badger and Indonesian stink badger, is a mammal native to Indonesia and Malaysia. Despite the common name, they are not closely related to true badger, and are, instead, Old World relatives of the skunks.[2]

Description[edit]

Sunda stink badgers have a similar body shape to badgers, but are significantly smaller, being 37 to 52 cm (15 to 20 in) in total length, and weighing from 1.3 to 3.6 kg (2.9 to 7.9 lb). Their fur is coarse, and black or very dark brown over most of the body, with a white stripe running from the top of the head to the tail. The tail is short, measuring about 3.6 cm (1.4 in), and is covered in pure white fur. The width of the stripe varies considerably between individuals, but is usually narrow, and may be discontinuous. As the name indicates, stink badgers have an anal scent gland that secretes a foul-smelling substance, which the animal can spray up to 15 cm (5.9 in). Females have six teats.[3]

Distribution and habitat[edit]

Sunda stink badgers are found in Java, Sumatra, Borneo, and the northern Natuna Islands. They typically inhabit forest edges or areas of secondary forest, often at elevations of over 2,000 m (6,600 ft), and only rarely on lowland plains. However, they have been reported as low as 250 m (820 ft) above sea level on Java, and also at relatively low elevations in Sarawak. Three subspecies are recognised:[3]

  • M. j. javanensis - Java and mainland Sumatra
  • M. j. lucifer - Borneo
  • M. j. ollula - Natuna Islands

Behaviour and biology[edit]

Sunda stink badgers are omnivorous and nocturnal. The animal portion of their diet consists of invertebrates, eggs, and carrion. At night, they root through soft soil using their snout and claws, searching for worms and ground-dwelling insects. During the day, they sleep in short burrows, less than 60 cm (24 in) in length, which they may either dig themselves or take over from other animals, such as porcupines. They have been reported to give birth to litters of two or three young.[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Long, B., Hon, J., Azlan J. & Duckworth, J. W. (2008). Mydaus javanensis. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 27 January 2009.
  2. ^ Dragoo, J. W.; Honeycutt, R. L. (1997). "Systematics of mustelid-like carnivores". Journal of Mammalogy 78 (2): 426–443. doi:10.2307/1382896. 
  3. ^ a b c Hwang, Y. T.; Larivière, S. (2003). "Mydaus javanensis". Mammalian Species (723): 1–3. doi:10.1644/723. 
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