Overview

Distribution

Banded palm civets are found in the Oriental biogeographic region, in Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and peninsular Burma.

Biogeographic Regions: oriental (Native )

  • Wilson, D., D. Reeder. 1993. Mammal Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference. Washington and London: Smithsonian Institution Press.
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Range Description

The banded palm civet occurs in the Sundaic region and is found in Peninsular Myanmar, Indonesia (Sipora Island, South Pagi Island, Kalimantan, Sumatra; Holden 2006), Borneo (Azlan 2004; Wells et al. 2005), Peninsular Malaysia (Ratnam et al. 1995; Kawanishi and Sunquist 2004; Laidlaw pers. comm.), and peninsular Thailand (Wozencraft 2005, A.J. Lynam pers. comm). The distribution implies that Brunei may be included in this range but a specific record has not been traced.

The type locality of one race has been reported in Bankachon, Myanmar, but there are no known current records in Myanmar (Than Zaw et al. in press.). According to Payne et al. (1985) this species has been recorded in many localities in Borneo, and there are many subsequent records from the island including Mount Kinabulu National Park in Borneo, near Poring Hot Spring (600 m asl) by Wells et al. (2005) and Similajau National Park (Duckworth 1997). It is found at elevations up to 1,200 m (Payne et al. 1985).

In Sumatra, Holden (2006) had only a few records, all from lowland primary forest (sea level to a few hundred meters, with a maximum of 800 m) in the region of Kerinci Salbat. Other records may exist from the island and need to be collated. However, these data suggest the species may perhaps be confined to lowlands in Sumatra, and does not occur in hills or mountains.
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Physical Description

Morphology

Hemigalus derbyanus are about the size of small domestic cats, with long slender bodies. This species ranges in length (nose to anus) from 46 to 53 centimeters. They have gray-yellow woolly hair with seven or eight crescent-shaped black markings on the dorsal side and black rings around their tails, which vary from 25 to 38 centimeters in length. Partially retractable claws and powerful feet allow banded palm civets to be very able climbers, and long tapered snouts assist in their feeding habits. They have 40 teeth with a dental pattern 3/3;1/1;4/4;2/2 common to most members of the Viverridae. Their molars are tritubercular. Both males and females of the species possess vestigial anal glands. Underparts of the body are lighter than the dorsal side, and the pelage in the dorsal neck region is reversed and points forward.

Range mass: 1.0 to 3.0 kg.

Range length: 46 to 53 cm.

Sexual Dimorphism: sexes alike

Other Physical Features: endothermic ; bilateral symmetry

  • Kowalczyk, C. 1989. Behavioral observations of the banded palm civet (Hemigalus derbyanus) in captivity. Zoologische Garten, 59 (4): 264-274.
  • Lekagul, B., J. McNeely. 1977. Mammals of Thailand. Kurusapha Ladprao: Association for the Conservation of Wildlife.
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Ecology

Habitat

Banded palm civets are partly arboreal and prefer tall forests. They are nocturnal and feed mainly on the ground at night, sleeping in holes in the ground or in trees during the day. Hemigalus derbyanus are also known to forage for prey in trees and near streams.

Habitat Regions: tropical ; terrestrial

Terrestrial Biomes: forest ; rainforest

  • Burton, J., B. Pearson. 1987. The Collins Guide to the Rare Mammals of the World. Lexington, MA: Stephen Greene Press.
  • Ducker, G. 1975. Viverrids and Aardwolves. Pp. 144-184 in B Grzimek, ed. Grzimek's Animal Life Encyclopedia, Vol. Volume 12; Mammals III, 1st Edition. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold Company.
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Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
Little is known on the ecology of the banded palm civet and further studies are required. This species has been recorded from primary lowland rainforest, but also in disturbed habitat, peat swamp forest and acacia plantations (Ratnam et al. 1995; Azlan, 2004; Wells et al., 2005; Kanchanasaka pers. comm.; B. Giman pers. comm.). In Borneo, it was found at elevations up to 1,200 m (Payne et al., 1985).

It is nocturnal (Lekagul and McNeely 1977). Medway (1969) suggests that it is confined to the ground under tall forest. Davis (1962) found in Borneo that over 90% of its diet was insects, and no stomachs contained fruit or vegetables. All Bornean civets (except Diplogale hosei) have been recorded in disturbed forest areas, though abundance declines in this habitat (Heydon and Bulloh 1996; Colon pers. comm. 2002).

Systems
  • Terrestrial
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Trophic Strategy

Banded palm civets are primarily carnivores, hunting for prey in trees, near streams or on the forest floor. Much of their diet consists of locusts and worms, but they also eat crustaceans, aquatic and terrestrial snails, spiders, ants and frogs. In captivity, the species has been observed to eat fruit, including bananas, but plant consumption is unknown in the wild.

Hemigalus derbyanus catches larger prey by biting it at the back of the neck and then shaking it violently. Their front paws help to grasp the prey while tearing and chewing it, and they swallow with their heads tilted upwards. Often, drinking precedes and follows eating.

Animal Foods: amphibians; insects; terrestrial non-insect arthropods; mollusks; terrestrial worms; aquatic crustaceans

Primary Diet: carnivore (Insectivore , Vermivore)

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Associations

Ecosystem roles of Hemigalus derbyanus have not been explored. As small carnivores, they might have some effect on prey populations. Also, as mammals that consume large numbers of insects such as locusts, they might have some positive impact on agriculture by reducing pest numbers.

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The predators of banded palm civets have not been identified.

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Life History and Behavior

Behavior

Banded palm civets observed in captivity have been known to communicate through scent marking, physical interaction and vocalizations. Both defensive and territorial scent marking have been observed in this species. Social behavior includes grooming and pacing, and a keen sense of smell plays a role in identification among individuals. Vocal communication is prevalent in captivity and includes hissing, spitting, cooing, whining and growling.

Communication Channels: tactile ; acoustic ; chemical

Other Communication Modes: scent marks

Perception Channels: tactile ; chemical

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Life Expectancy

Very little is known regarding the lifespan of Hemigalus derbyanus in the wild. In captivity, individuals 11 to 13 years old lacked all teeth, suggesting advanced age.

Average lifespan

Status: captivity:
13 years.

Average lifespan

Status: captivity:
12.0 years.

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Lifespan, longevity, and ageing

Maximum longevity: 16 years (captivity) Observations: One wild born female was about 16 years old when she died in captivity, though she could have been older (Richard Weigl 2005). Individuals in captivity aged 11 to 13 years lacked all teeth (Kowalczyk 1989).
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Reproduction

Very little is known about the mating systems of banded palm civets as they tend to be reclusive and have low reproduction success in captivity.

Of banded palm civets observed in captivity, very few have given birth, thus there is a small sample size from which to generalize. The females' estrus cycle is not easily identifiable, but scientists hypothesize that they may be seasonally polyestrus or generally polyestrus throughout the year with a 4 to 7 day cycle. Banded palm civets in captivity do not construct nests and give birth to 1 or 2 young, which weigh about 125 grams. They open their eyes after 8 to 12 days and nurse for about 70 days before eating solid food. In the family Viverridae, of which Hemigalus derbyanus is a member, there are generally two litters per year, one in the spring and one in the fall. The gestation period ranges from 32 to 64 days among all of the species of this family.

Breeding interval: The breeding interval of banded palm civets is unknown.

Breeding season: The breeding season is unknown.

Average number of offspring: 1 to 2.

Average weaning age: 70 days.

Key Reproductive Features: seasonal breeding ; year-round breeding ; gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); sexual ; viviparous

Average birth mass: 125 g.

Average number of offspring: 2.

Although little is known regarding the mating habits of banded palm civets, the relatively long nursing period of the female (about 70 days) suggests that large amounts of energy are required and thus feeding must increase during the pregnancy and following the birth of her young. Male contribution is unknown.

Parental Investment: altricial ; pre-weaning/fledging (Provisioning: Female)

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Conservation

Conservation Status

This species is not listed as threatened or endangered on any official sites, but recent research suggests that banded palm civets are increasingly rare in their native habitats and decreasing in numbers due to deforestation and habitat loss.

US Federal List: no special status

CITES: appendix ii

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: vulnerable

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IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
VU
Vulnerable

Red List Criteria
A2cd+3c

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2008

Assessor/s
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 Vulnerable because of an ongoing population decline, estimated to be more than 30% over the last three generations (suspected to be 15 years), inferred from over-exploitation, decline in habitat quality, and habitat destruction and degradation. In addition, considering the current and projected rates of loss in lowland forests within its range, the species is suspected to decline by at least another 30% in the next 3 generations inferred from habitat loss alone. There is no evidence this species can survive outside tall forest. There are records from degraded habitat, but they are all adjoining good forest. Thus, this species is very likely a habitat specialist, confined to in lowland forests (largely below 600 m) and may be disappearing from larger portions of its range than suspected. Large scale habitat loss due to conversion to plantations in Peninsular Malaysia, Borneo and Thailand (citations given above) is inferred to be driving steep range-wide declines in population.
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Population

Population
The population status of the banded palm civet is poorly known. Holden (in press) has speculated that this species may be rare where it is found. However, Payne et al (1985) states that it was the second most common viverid in the forests of Sabah, and it occurs in tall and secondary forests. In the 25 years since the data were gathered to make the assessment of Payne et al. was made, habitat landscape in Sabah has changed greatly, and the banded palm civet's current status in Sabah might therefore differ greatly from prior estimations. In peninsular Maylasia, this species has not been found in secondary forests, but was found in Taman Negara National Park (Kawanishi and Sunquist 2004), indicating populations may also be reduced across the species' range in mainland South-east Asia, where forest conversion has been extensive.

Population Trend
Decreasing
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Threats

Major Threats
Habitat loss and degradation have been assumed to be major threats to the banded palm civet (Schreiber et al. 1989). Reduction in primary forest habitat has proceeded very fast throughout the lowland Sundaic region in the last 20 years, particularly in the lower altitudes which evidently support the bulk of this species' population (e.g. BirdLife International, 2001; Holmes, 2000; Jepson et al., 2001; McMorrow and Talip, 2001; Lambert and Collar, 2002; Curran et al. 2004; Fuller, 2004; Eames et al. 2005, Aratrakorn et al. 2006; Kinnaird et al. 2003). This has surely lead to steep population declines. In Borneo, the overall density of civets (including the banded palm civet) in logged forests was found to be significantly lower than in primary forests (Heydon and Bulloh 1996). From observation in Thailand there is clear no evidence that the banded palm civet can survive in plantations or other areas outside of evergreen forests (Kanchanasaka pers. comm.). Additionally the Mentawi populations are thought to be impacted by economic development as human settlements expand into civet habitat, resulting in conflicts since this species will prey on domestic livestock such as chickens (Schreiber et al. 1989). Hunting and trade are also threats for this species. Because Banded Civet spends a lot of time on the ground, it is more exposed to snares and other traps than are the partly and largely arboreal palm civets. It is hunted in Sarawak for food. In Thailand, this civet is hunted, and in the last five years, there have been less than five live individuals brought to a zoo (Kanchanasaka pers. comm.).
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
The banded palm civet is listed on CITES Appendix II. The Mentawai subspecies was listed as ?Threatened? in the IUCN Action Plan for the Conservation of Mustelids and Viverrids (Schreiber et al. 1989). This species is protected in Malaysia (Azlan pers. comm.), as well as in Thailand, Brunei, Indonesia and in Myanmar.

This species was recorded from Mount Kinabalu National Park in Borneo in 2003-04 (Wells et al. 2005), Temengor Forest Reserve in Malaysia by Ratnam et al. (1995), Similajau National Park in Sarawak (Duckworth 1997), and many other protected areas throughout its range (W. Duckworth in litt. 2006).
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Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Information on the negative impact of Hemigalus derbyanus is not available.

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The economic importance of banded palm civets is relatively insignificant, although some members of the Viverridae family are trapped or bred in captivity to procure their civet, a potent fluid obtained from the anal glands which is often used in perfumes.

Positive Impacts: body parts are source of valuable material

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Wikipedia

Banded palm civet

The banded palm civet (Hemigalus derbyanus), also called the banded civet, is a civet found in the Sundaic region and occurs in peninsular Myanmar, peninsular Malaysia, peninsular Thailand and in Indonesia on the islands of Sipura, Sumatra and Borneo. It is listed as Vulnerable because of an ongoing population decline, estimated to be more than 30% over the last three generations, inferred from over-exploitation, decline in habitat quality, and habitat destruction and degradation.[2]

Hemigalus is a monospecific genus that was first named and described by the French zoologist Claude Jourdan in 1837.[3][4]

Characteristics[edit]

Banded palm civet nose, paws, scent glands and genitalia, as illustrated in Pocock's The Fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma - Mammalia Vol 1[3]

Having roughly the size of a domestic cat, this species of viverrid measures from 41 to 51 cm in total length, and weights from 1 to 3 kg (2.2 to 6.6 lbs).[5]

The banded palm civet has a long pointed face, reminiscent of insectivorous mammals. It has a long body set on short legs, and five toes on each foot with retractable claws. It looks very similar to Owston's palm civet (Chrotogale owstoni), except that it lacks spots on its body, and the hair on its neck points upwards instead of down along the neck. It is also similar to the rare Hose's palm civet (Diplogale hosei), an endemic of northern Borneo - they only differ in shape of muzzle and teeth and Hose's civet does not have the banded pelage of the Banded Civet. Banded Civet has short, dense fur that is generally a dark cream/buff color with four to five dark bands on its back. Its tail has two dark bands and the latter half of the tail is dark brown to black. There is a dark brown stripe that extends down the length of the top of the muzzle, and two stripes that extend from the top middle of the eye to the inside corner of the ears. There are two areas of white above and below each eye, and the muzzle is darker than the rest of the face.

Distribution and habitat[edit]

Though it lives in the forests, it spends much of its time on the ground.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Wozencraft, W. C. (2005). "Order Carnivora". In Wilson, D. E.; Reeder, D. M. Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 532–628. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494. 
  2. ^ a b Hon, J., Azlan, M. J. and Duckworth, J. W. (2008). "Hemigalus derbyanus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. 
  3. ^ a b Pocock, R. I. (1939). The fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma. Mammalia. – Volume 1. Taylor and Francis, London. Pp. 452–458.
  4. ^ Jourdan, C. (1837). Mémoire sur deux mammifères nouveaux de l'Inde, considérés comme types des deux genres voisins des Paradoxures, genres Hémigale et Ambliodon. Comptes rendus hebdomadaires des séances de l'Académie des sciences: 442–447.
  5. ^ [1] arkive.org
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