Callosciurus

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Callosciurus
Temporal range: Early Pleistocene to Recent
Callosciurus prevosti.jpg
Callosciurus prevostii
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Rodentia
Family: Sciuridae
Subfamily: Callosciurinae
Genus: Callosciurus
Gray, 1867
Species

C. adamsi (Kloss, 1921)
C. albescens (Bonhote, 1901)
C. baluensis (Bonhote, 1901)
C. caniceps (Gray, 1842)
C. erythraeus (Pallas, 1779)
C. finlaysonii (Horsfield, 1824)
C. inornatus (Gray, 1867)
C. melanogaster (Thomas, 1895)
C. nigrovittatus (Horsfield, 1824)
C. notatus (Boddaert, 1785)
C. orestes (Thomas, 1895)
C. phayrei (Blyth, 1856)
C. prevostii (Desmarest, 1822)
C. pygerythrus (Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, 1831)
C. quinquestriatus (Anderson, 1871)

Callosciurus is a genus of squirrels collectively referred to as the "beautiful squirrels". They are found mainly in Southeast Asia, though a few species also occur in Nepal, northeastern India, Bangladesh and southern China.[1] Several of the species have settled on islands. In total, the genus contains 15 species and numerous varieties and subspecies.[1] The genera Glyphotes, Rubrisciurus, and Tamiops have sometimes been included in Callosciurus.

Species[edit]

There are approximately 15 species in this genus,[1] and over 60 subspecies. These squirrels range in length from 13 to 27 cm (5.1 to 10.6 in), not including the tail which is often about the same length as the body.[2][3] Most are rather dull olive-brown to gray and several have a pale and dark stripe on their side, however a few are very colorful.[2] The Pallas squirrel may have an unremarkable olive-gray back, while its belly is often –but not always– bright red.[4] The "typical" subspecies of Prevost's squirrels have black backs, white sides, and red-brown undersides. The Finlayson's squirrel occurs in numerous varieties, three of which are overall red-brown, overall black, or pure white.[2]

Most squirrels in Callosciurus live in tropical rain forests, but some individuals live in parks and gardens in cities. In the trees, they build their nests out of plant material. They are solitary, and give birth to one to five young. Their food consists of nuts, fruits, and seeds, and also of insects and bird eggs.

  • Anderson's squirrel (Callosciurus quinquestriatus) is made up of two subspecies, C. q. quinqestriatus andC. q. imarius.[5] This species is found throughout China and Myanmar, but is listed as "Near Threatened" by the IUCN due to habitat loss.[6]
  • The black-striped squirrel (Callosciurus nigrovittatus) is found throughout Java, Sumatra, southern Thailand, the Malay Peninsula, and numerous small islands. This taxon consists of four subspecies: C. n. nigrovittatus, C. n. bilimitatus, C. n. bocki, and C. n. klossi.[5] It is listed as "Near Threatened" by the IUCN.[7]
  • The ear-spot squirrel (Callosciurus adamsi), endemic to northern Borneo, listed as "Vulnerable" by the IUCN.[1][9]
  • The inornate squirrel (Callosciurus inornatus) is distributed across Laos, Vietnam, and the Chinese province of Yunnan. This squirrel was once considered a subspecies of Callosciurus pygerythrus, and as a result several texts inaccurately cite C. pygerythrus as being found in these areas.[10] The reclassification was based on different fur characteristics, placing it closer in relation to C. caniceps.[10][11] It is listed as "Least Concern" by IUCN.[10]
  • The Kinabalu squirrel (Callosciurus baluensis), endemic to northeastern Borneo, specifically the wide area around Mount Kinabalu.[1] Its tail and upperparts are grizzled blackish, the underparts are reddish-orange, and the flanks have a narrow buff stripe with a broader black stripe below.[3] This species is listed as "Least Concern" by the IUCN.[12]
  • Kloss's squirrel (C. albescens), endemic to northern Sumatra, population data is insufficient to assess its endangerment status according to the IUCN.[1][13] It is debated whether it is a subspecies of C. notatus, which would make Kloss's squirrel instead be named C. notatus albescens.
  • The Mentawai squirrel (Callosciurus melanogaster) is one of 20 or so species native to the Mentawai Islands off the west coast of Sumatra. It is further dived into three subspecies: C. m. melanogaster, C. m. mentawi, and C. m. atratus.[5] This small isolated population is listed as "Vulnerable" by the IUCN due to habitat loss.[14]
  • Phayre's squirrel (Callosciurus phayrei) is found in China and southern Myanmar, it listed as "Least Concern" by the IUCN.[1][15]

Finlayson's squirrel[edit]

Finlayson's squirrel
Callosciurus finlaysonii - Finlayson's squirrel (variable squirrel).jpg
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Species: C. finlaysonii
Binomial name
Callosciurus finlaysonii
(Horsfield, 1823)
Subspecies

15+ subspecies.[17]

Callosciurus finlaysonii distribution.png

Finlayson's squirrel (Callosciurus finlaysonii, misspelled C. finlaysoni) or the variable squirrel is found in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam. The subspecies C. f. floweri, which is adapted to urban parks and gardens around Bangkok has been introduced in the Serangoon area of Singapore. Its color is extremely variable; over 15 subspecies are recognised, including C. f. ferrugineus which has been treated as a separate species.[17] The subspecific name of C. f. boonsongi commemorates Thai zoologist and conservationist Dr. Boonsong Lekagul.


Gray-bellied squirrel[edit]

Gray-bellied squirrels (Callosciurus caniceps) consist of six subspecies found in forests, plantations and gardens in Peninsular Malaysia, Thailand, southern Myanmar, southern China (Yunnan) and possibly western Laos.[18] They have been introduced to the Ryukyu Islands in Japan. As suggested by the name, the belly is usually gray, though sometimes reddish on the sides. Depending on subspecies and season, the upperparts are gray, yellowish-olive or reddish. C. caniceps spp. are listed as "Least Concern" by the IUCN.[18]

Subspecies include:[19]

  • C. c. caniceps
  • C. c. adangensis
  • C. c. bimaculatus
  • C. c. casensis
  • C. c. concolor
  • C. c. domelicus

Irrawaddy squirrel[edit]

Hoary-bellied Squirrel at Jayanti, Duars, West Bengal W Picture 452.jpg

Subspecies include:

  • C. p. pygerythrus
  • C. p. blythii
  • C. p. janetta
  • C. p. lokroides
  • C. p. mearsi
  • C. p. owensi
  • C. p. stevensi


Pallas's squirrel[edit]

Main article: Pallas's squirrel
Pallas's squirrel
A Sciuridae in Taipei 2.jpg
A Pallas's squirrel in Taipei
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Species: C. erythraeus
Binomial name
Callosciurus erythraeus
(Pallas, 1779)
Subspecies

20+ subspecies.[5]

Callosciurus erythraeus distribution.png

Pallas's squirrel (C. erythraeus), also known as the red-bellied tree squirrel (but not the red-bellied squirrel, Rubrisciurus rubriventer), includes over 20 subspecies with various colorings. The color of the belly is actually highly variable and may show no red at all. Pallas's squirrel is found in forests from far eastern India and Bhutan, through Indochina, to the Thai-Malay Peninsula and southern and eastern China (including Taiwan). There are also introduced populations in the Buenos Aires Province of Argentina, Dadizele in Belgium (where first mistaken for Père David's rock squirrel), Cap d'Antibes in France, and in Japan.[22] In these regions it is considered an invasive species, as it can cause considerable damage to trees and may outcompete native wildlife such as the red squirrel.[22]


Plantain squirrel[edit]

Plantain squirrel
Squirrel--Bukit-Timah.jpg
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Species: C. notatus
Binomial name
Callosciurus notatus
(Boddaert, 1785)
Subspecies[5]
  • C. n. notatus
  • C. n. diardii
  • C. n. vittatus
  • C. n. suffusus
  • C. n. miniatus
Callosciurus notatus distribution.png

The plantain squirrel (Callosciurus notatus), is also one of several species called the oriental squirrel or tricolored squirrel. It is found in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand, in a wide range of habitats: forests, mangroves, parks, gardens, agricultural areas. Fruit farmers consider them to be pests.

The body is about 20–30 centimetres (7.9–11.8 in) long with a similar sized tail. It is greyish/brown with a chestnut underside and a black and white stripe between the two.

Its diet consists mostly of leaves and fruits, but also may include insects and bird eggs. Plantain squirrels are known to break open twigs that contain ant larvae to eat them,[24] and they can eat fruits much bigger than them, such as mangoes, jackfruits or coconuts. They are very quick and agile in trees, able to jump a few meters between trees and rarely wander on the ground.

In Singapore


Prevost's squirrel[edit]

Prevost's squirrel
Schoenhoernchen Callosciurus prevosti.jpg
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Species: C. prevostii
Binomial name
Callosciurus prevostii
(Desmarest, 1822)
Callosciurus prevostii distribution.png

Prevost's squirrel (Callosciurus prevostii), or Asian tri-colored squirrel, is found in forest in the Thai-Malay Peninsula, Sumatra, Borneo and nearby smaller islands, with an introduced population in northern Sulawesi. They eat fruits, nuts, seeds, buds, flowers, insects and bird eggs. These squirrels carry the fruits far from the tree and drop the seeds when finished with their meal. Spread far from the parent tree the seeds have a reduced likelihood to be eaten by other animals and greater opportunity to produce a new generation of plants.[26]

The "typical" subspecies (for example C. p. prevostii from the Thai-Malay Peninsula) of Prevost's squirrel are among the most colourful mammals in the world with their black upperparts and tail, reddish-orange underparts, and whitish thighs and flanks. The markings in some subspecies are duller, and C. prevostii pluto from northeastern Borneo is reddish-orange below and black above (no whitish thighs or flanks).[3]


References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g Thorington, R.W., Jr.; Hoffmann, R.S. (2005). "Family Sciuridae". In Wilson, D.E.; Reeder, D.M. Mammal Species of the World: a taxonomic and geographic reference (3rd ed.). The Johns Hopkins University Press. ISBN 0-8018-8221-4. OCLC 26158608. 
  2. ^ a b c Francis, C. M. (2008). A Guide to the Mammals of Southeast Asia. ISBN 978-0-691-13551-9
  3. ^ a b c Payne, J., and C. M. Francis (1985), A Field Guide to the Mammals of Borneo. ISBN 967-99947-1-6
  4. ^ Smith, T. S., and Y. Xie, editors (2008). A Guide to the Mammals of China. ISBN 978-0-691-09984-2
  5. ^ a b c d e f Thorington, R.W., Jr.; Hoffmann, R.S. (2005). "Family Sciuridae". In Wilson, D.E.; Reeder, D.M. Mammal Species of the World: a taxonomic and geographic reference (3rd ed.). The Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 754–818. ISBN 0-8018-8221-4. OCLC 26158608. 
  6. ^ Lunde, D., Duckworth, J. W., Lee, B. & Tizard, R. J. (2008). Callosciurus quinquestriatus. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  7. ^ Duckworth, J. W., Lee, B. & Tizard, R. J. (2008). Callosciurus nigrovittatus. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  8. ^ Duckworth, J. W., Lee, B. & Tizard, R. J. (2008). Callosciurus orestes. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  9. ^ Duckworth, J. W. & Meijaard, E. (2008). Callosciurus adamsi. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  10. ^ a b c Duckworth, J. W. & Timmins, R. J. (2008). Callosciurus inornatus. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  11. ^ Corbet and Hill, 1992
  12. ^ Duckworth, J. W., Meijaard, E. & Gumal, M. (2008). Callosciurus baluensis. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  13. ^ Meijaard, E. & van Strien, N. J. (2008). Callosciurus albescens. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  14. ^ Lunde, D., Duckworth, J. W., Lee, B. & Tizard, R. J. (2008). Callosciurus melanogaster. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  15. ^ Chiozza, F. (2008). Callosciurus phayrei. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  16. ^ Duckworth, J. W., Timmins, R. & Parr, M. (2008). Callosciurus finlaysonii. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  17. ^ a b Thorington, R.W., Jr.; Hoffmann, R.S. (2005). "Family Sciuridae". In Wilson, D.E.; Reeder, D.M. Mammal Species of the World: a taxonomic and geographic reference (3rd ed.). The Johns Hopkins University Press. ISBN 0-8018-8221-4. OCLC 26158608. 
  18. ^ a b Duckworth, J. W. (2008). Callosciurus caniceps. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  19. ^ Thorington, R.W., Jr.; Hoffmann, R.S. (2005). "Family Sciuridae". In Wilson, D.E.; Reeder, D.M. Mammal Species of the World: a taxonomic and geographic reference (3rd ed.). The Johns Hopkins University Press. ISBN 0-8018-8221-4. OCLC 26158608. 
  20. ^ a b Shrestha, N., Sarkar, S. K., Lunde, D., Duckworth, J. W., Lee, B., Tizard, R. J. & Molur, S. (2008). Callosciurus pygerythrus. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  21. ^ Duckworth, J. W., Timmins, R. J. & Molur, S. (2008). Callosciurus erythraeus. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  22. ^ a b Stuyck, Baert, Breyne & Adriaens (2010). Invasion history and control of a Pallas squirrel Callosciurus erythraeus population in Dadizele, Belgium. Instituut voor Natuur- en Bosonderzoek
  23. ^ Duckworth, J. W., Lee, B. & Tizard, R. J. (2008). Callosciurus notatus. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  24. ^ Anja Leo, Damage to Macaranga ant-plants by a myrmecophagous squirrel (Callosciurus notatus, Rodentia, Sciuridae) in West Malaysia [1]
  25. ^ Duckworth, J. W. & Hedges, S. (2008). Callosciurus prevostii. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  26. ^ Prevost's Squirrel at Animal Diversity Web

External links[edit]