Phalanger vestitus


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Phalanger vestitus
Species Authority: (Milne-Edwards, 1877)
Common Name(s):
English Stein's Cuscus
French Couscous Noir
Taxonomic Notes: The four widely separated subpopulations of Phalanger vestitus are distinctive and its taxonomy needs to be re-evaluated (K. Helgen pers. comm.).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Leary, T., Singadan, R., Menzies, J., Helgen, K., Wright, D., Allison, A., Aplin, K., Salas, L. & Dickman, C.
Reviewer(s): Lamoreux, J. & Hilton-Taylor, C. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
Listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution, presumed large population, and because it is unlikely to be declining at nearly the rate required to qualify for listing in a threatened category. The four subpopulations of this species, however, may represent four different species (see Taxonomic Notes). Some of these subpopulations if elevated to species would probably warrant a threatened status.
1996 Vulnerable

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is endemic to the island of New Guinea (Indonesia and Papua New Guinea). It is separated into four distinct subpopulations, each of which may be a distinct species. It has been recorded between 1,200 and 2,200 m asl.
Indonesia; Papua New Guinea
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Overall, this species is abundant. However, while some subpopulations are abundant and secure, others are probably under considerable threat.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: It is found in primary and slightly disturbed secondary upper montane tropical moist forests. It is believed to have a single young.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species is threatened in parts of its range by local hunting for food.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It occurs in a few protected areas. Further study into the taxonomy of this species (which may prove to be a species complex) is needed.

Citation: Leary, T., Singadan, R., Menzies, J., Helgen, K., Wright, D., Allison, A., Aplin, K., Salas, L. & Dickman, C. 2008. Phalanger vestitus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.2. <>. Downloaded on 03 September 2015.
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