Overview

Distribution

Range Description

Endemic to the Mindanao Faunal Region, Philippines. It has been recorded from Dinagat, Mindanao (Bukidnon, Davao del Sur, Misamis Occidental, Misamis Oriental, South Cotabato, Surigao del Norte, and Zamboanga del Sur provinces), and Siargao (Heaney et al. 1998). It ranges from 750-2,250 m on Mindanao, whereas it is found at lower elevations on the other islands.
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Geographic Range

The Philippine tree shrew is widely distributed on the Mindanao, Dinagat, and Siargao islands of the Philippines (Lyon 1913; Nowak 1991).

Biogeographic Regions: oriental (Native )

Other Geographic Terms: island endemic

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Physical Description

Morphology

Physical Description

Urogale can easily be distinguished from other members of the Tupaiidae by its even-haired round tail and elongated snout. Furthermore, it has small zygomatic fenestra and large canine-like second incisors. Compared to the rest of its family, the skull of Urogale is large and angular, with a heavy rostrum. The claws on the fore feet are long and sharp. The dental and skull characteristics indicate that Urogale is probably more predatory and carnivorous than any other member of Tupaiidae.

The length of the head and body of U. everetti is approximately 170 to 220 mm, while the tail is 115 to 175 mm. The feet are usually 50 mm long and the braincase is about 20 mm wide.

The upper parts of the animal are brownish in color, due to a mixture of tawny and blackish hair. Most specimens also have an orange shoulder stripe. The underparts of the animal vary in color from orange to orangish-red. The chest is usually the brightest part. Specimens from different areas also vary in color from each other. The specimens from Dingagat are generally light in color with a golden sheen dorsally, while those from Siargao are usually much darker.

(Nowak 1999; Lyon 1913)

Average mass: 350 g.

Range length: 170 to 220 mm.

Average mass: 350 g.

Average basal metabolic rate: 1.25 W.

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Type Information

Type for Urogale everetti
Catalog Number: USNM 125287
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Mammals
Sex/Stage: Male; Adult
Preparation: Skin; Skull
Collector(s): E. Mearns
Year Collected: 1904
Locality: Mount Apo, Todaya, Mindanao, Davao Del Sur Province, Philippines, Asia
Elevation (m): 1219
  • Type: Mearns, E. A. 1905 May 13. Proceedings of the United States National Museum. 28: 435.
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
The species inhabits mid-elevation ranges and prefers montane and lower mossy forest, though it can be found in disturbed habitats near forested areas (L. Heaney pers. comm.). Although it exhibits some tolerance for light habitat disturbance (for example, selective logging), it does not do well in heavily disturbed forest (L. Heaney pers. comm.).

Systems
  • Terrestrial
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Philippine tree shrews are usually found inhabiting brush zones and dense vegetation along river beds. They have also been observed running and climbing in trees. Natives of the Philippines say that U. everetti make nests in the ground and in cliffs. Urogale specimens have been collected from the mountains of Mindanao at elevations ranging from 3,000 to 4,000 feet above sea level. (Lyon 1913; Nowak 1999)

Range elevation: 900 to 1200 m.

Habitat Regions: tropical ; terrestrial

Terrestrial Biomes: forest

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Trophic Strategy

Food Habits

This species is omnivorous. Urogale eats a variety of foods ranging from small animals and insects to fruits and vegetables. U. everetti has also been observed opening and eating eggs with enough skill to suggest that it does so in the wild. Their appetite is large; an individual can eat several bananas or two-ounce pieces of meat a day. Eating is usually done in the morning, but water is consumed whenever possible.

(Nowak 1999)

Animal Foods: mammals; amphibians; reptiles; eggs; insects; terrestrial non-insect arthropods

Plant Foods: fruit

Primary Diet: omnivore

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Associations

Known prey organisms

Urogale everetti preys on:
non-insect arthropods

This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
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Life History and Behavior

Life Expectancy

Lifespan/Longevity

Not much is know about the lifespan of U. everetti; however, one captive specimen lived to be 11.5 years old.

(Nowak 1999)

Range lifespan

Status: captivity:
11.5 (high) years.

Average lifespan

Status: captivity:
11.5 years.

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Lifespan, longevity, and ageing

Maximum longevity: 11.5 years (captivity)
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Reproduction

Philippine tree shrews are born naked. Newly born Urogale weigh approximately 20 grams and are about 103 mm long. After 13 to 25 days, the young open their eyes. Urogale has been bred successfully in several zoos. The gestation period lasts 54 to 56 days and litters of only one or two have been reported. Adult females have 2 mammae and suckle their young about once every two days.  Females are usually receptive to males soon after they give birth. (Hayssen et al. 1964; Nowak 1999).

Range number of offspring: 1 to 2.

Average number of offspring: 1-2.

Range gestation period: 54 to 56 days.

Key Reproductive Features: iteroparous ; gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); viviparous ; post-partum estrous

Average birth mass: 20 g.

Average number of offspring: 2.

Parental Investment: altricial

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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
Tabaranza, B., Gonzalez, J.C., Rosell-Ambal, G. & Heaney, L.

Reviewer/s
Hoffmann, M. & Chanson, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)

Contributor/s

Justification
Listed as Least Concern as it is widespread within its limited range in the Philippines and locally common. Population declines may have occurred at lower elevation ranges due to deforestation, but the population is likely to be stable above 1,000 m and the species occurs in a number of protected areas.

History
  • 1996
    Vulnerable
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The current plans for the conservation of tree shrews in Southeast Asia are outlined in "Eurasian Insectivores and Tree Shrew: Status Survey and Conservation Action Plan", a 1995 publication released by the IUCN. The URL for this site is   http://members.vienna.at/shrew/itsesAP95-introduction.html.

The biggest problem threatening Urogale everetti populations is the destruction of their natural habitats by humans. Because they aren't well known and don't have an economic value, this species and its habitat are being overlooked by conservationists.

(Stone 1995)

US Migratory Bird Act: no special status

US Federal List: no special status

CITES: appendix ii

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: least concern

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Population

Population
This species is widespread and locally common in forests on Dinagat and moderately common throughout Mindanao.

Population Trend
Stable
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Threats

Major Threats
The major threat is deforestation that has occurred at lower elevations, and much of this species' habitat below 1000 m has been lost.
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
This species occurs in several protected areas. It is listed on CITES Appendix II.
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Wikipedia

Mindanao treeshrew

The Mindanao treeshrew (Urogale everetti), also called the Philippine tree shrew, is a species of treeshrew endemic to the Mindanao region in the Philippines.[2] It is the only member of the genus Urogale. The scientific name commemorates British colonial administrator and zoological collector Alfred Hart Everett.

Range and habitat[edit]

It is found, as its name suggests, in Mindanao, in the Philippines. It lives in rain forests and montane forests.

Description[edit]

It is the heaviest treeshrew, weighing about 355 g, and is terrestrial.[3] The body is 17-20 cm, and the tail is 11-17 cm. It has a particularly elongated snout and a rounded, even-haired tail. The fur is brownish, but with orange or yellow underparts.

It is diurnal in its habits, and it climbs well and runs fast on the ground.

Diet[edit]

Its diet is varied. It includes insects, lizards, young birds, bird's eggs, and fruit.

Reproduction[edit]

It is thought that in the wild, it nests on the ground, or on cliffs. Their breeding habits have been observed in captivity, where females have produced 1 or 2 young after a gestation period of 54-56 days.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Helgen, K. M. (2005). Wilson, D. E.; Reeder, D. M, eds. Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 108–109. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494. 
  2. ^ a b Tabaranza, B., Gonzalez, J. C., Ambal, G. & Heaney, L. (2008). Urogale everetti. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 30 December 2008.
  3. ^ Napier JR, Napier PH. (1968) A handbook of living primates. Morphology, ecology and behaviour of nonhuman primates. Academic, London
  • Macmillian Illustrated Animal Encyclopedia
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