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Banded Civet


Civets belong to a group of mammals that I hadn’t seen before. They are sometimes called civetcat, but personally I don’t really see a cat in them. They are also known for the special coffee that is made by giving a civet a certain coffee berry to eat and the pit that is found afterwards in de civets poo would apparently make very tasty coffee… On Borneo a total of eight species occur and during my Borneo trip in October 2019 these animals were mostly a ‘bycatch’ while I was looking for cats. Since they are pretty cool mammals and I did manage to see five of the eight species, hereby a civetspecial!

One of the most common species that I encountered was the Malay Civet (Viverra tangalunga) this species we often encountered on night drives. One was so tame it even came sniffing my boots! This species mainly forages on the ground.

A civet that mainly occurs in trees is the Small-toothed Palm Civet (Arctogalidia stigmatica). This is also not a rare species.

The Island Palm Civet (Paradoxurus philippinensis) can also be found in trees and I also saw it often.

Less common was the Banded Civet (Hemigalus derbyanus). This species was considerably less common than the others. By chance I had one sighting in Danum, as well in Deramakot and also the Kinabatangan river. So also the ten days Deramakot didn’t produce more sightings although the sighting in Deramakot definitely was the best!

A really rare civet is the Otter Civet (Cynogale benetti). This was probably even the most difficult mammal I saw on my Borneo trip. This species prefers wet areas which makes it less likely to encounter it near the road. In Deramakot we often had quite rainy evenings which should have increased our chances, but despite that it didn’t seem like this species would be a success. On the fourth night we had a really fast sighting, but I barely saw anything of that. At the last night however we had an individual that showed itself quite well!

Rather fancy some cats? Read about the Sunda Clouded Leopard, the Marbled Cat, the Sunda Leopard Cat or the Flat-headed Cat.

There were some birds there too! Read about the search for the Bornean Ground Cuckoo or have a look at the owls of Borneo.

For a tripreport go to Mammalwatching.com.




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