Paradoxurus aureus, the golden palm civet, also called golden paradoxurus and golden wet-zone palm civet is a viverrid species native to Sri Lanka where it is known as පැනි කලවැද්දා in Sinhala. It was first described by Frédéric Cuvier in 1822.
Head and body length is 50-58cm. Tail is 42-53cm.
Uniform reddish gold to golden brown upperparts. Adults are red-gold to golden brown, with no special markings. The underside is paler gold. Fur is moderately soft, glossy, and densely distributed over the body and tail. Ears rounded, prominent, and terminally hairless. Eyes are large, with vertical pupils.
It is found in forest, the foothills and the areas in between and possibly the cloud forest in the Central Highlands, Namunukula, and the Knuckles Mountain Range (Dumbara). Paradoxurus aureus was formerly considered synonymous with Paradoxurus zeylonensis, but is now considered a distinct species.
Initially, all three endemic civet species in Sri Lanka was considered as a single species. But recent phylogenetic experiments, genetic makeup and morphogenetics, single species Paradoxurus aureus was split into three separate species in th same genus Paradoxurus. The other two endemic species are Paradoxurus montanus and Paradoxurus stenocephalus
- Groves, C. P., Rajapaksha, C., Mamemandra-Arachchi, K. (2009). "The taxonomy of the endemic golden palm civet of Sri Lanka". Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 155: 238–251. doi:10.1111/j.1096-3642.2008.00451.x.
- Cuvier, F. (1822). Du genre Paradxure et de deux espèces nouvelles qui s’y rapportent. Mémoires du Muséum d’Histoire Naturelle Paris 9: 41–48.
- Cuvier, G., Griffith, E. (1827). The animal kingdom arranged in conformity with its organization with supplementary additions to each order. Volume 2. G.B. Whittaker, London.