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Callosciurus caniceps 

Scope: Global
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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Rodentia Sciuridae

Scientific Name: Callosciurus caniceps
Species Authority: (Gray, 1842)
Common Name(s):
English Grey-bellied Squirrel
Taxonomic Notes: In the past many have considered C. caniceps a subspecies of C. erythraeus, which in turn has at least 80 synonyms (Corbet and Hill 1992, Thorington and Hoffmann 2005).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2016-02-19
Assessor(s): Duckworth, J.W.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G.
Justification:
This species is listed as Least Concern because of its wide distribution, presumed large population, occurrence in a number of protected areas, ability to adapt to human disturbance, and because it is unlikely to be declining at nearly the rate required to qualify for listing in a threatened category.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is found widely in Thailand, Myanmar and West Malaysia, and small adjacent islands including Langkawi in the west (Moore and Tate 1965, Corbet and Hill 1992). It has been recently confirmed to occur in the small part of North Lao PDR west of the Mekong (Suford 2010, J. W. Duckworth pers comm. 2016). It has been claimed from Yunnan province, China (Wang 2003), apparently from only one locality, Xunjiansi of Mile in the southern part of the province. While this is plausible, the many instances of confusion with the similar-looking C. inornatus make it desirable that this identification may be corroborated. Although in some parts of its range it is predominantly a lowland species (Moore and Tate 1965), overall it has a wide altitudinal range.
Countries occurrence:
Native:
Lao People's Democratic Republic; Malaysia; Myanmar; Thailand
Additional data:
Upper elevation limit (metres):2500
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:This species was rarely found in a survey conducted by Saiful and Nordin (2004) in Peninsular Malaysia (Weng River sub-catchment). Moore and Tate (1965) considered it to be generally numerous. It is common in Kuala Lumpur town park (J. W. Duckworth pers. comm. 2006), in Khao Yai National Park in Thailand (J. W. Duckworth pers. comm. 2006) and in Xaignabouli province, Lao PDR (Suford 2010, J.W. Duckworth pers. comm. 2016).
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This squirrel is well adapted to the presence of people. It uses plantations (notably of coconut Cocos nucifera), and other cultivated areas providing some tree cover, secondary growth, town and rural gardens, bamboo forest, evergreen and semi-evergreen broad-leaved forest, even heavily degraded areas (Moore and Tate 1965, Lekagul and McNeely 1977, Suford 2010). It has been reported up to 2,500 m, but in some parts of its range it is usually found at lower elevations (Smith et al. 2008).
The Gray-bellied Squirrel is normally diurnal and arboreal (Saiful and Nordin 2004), although it sometimes descends to the ground to pick up food, which it then carries into a tree and eats. The diet consists of fruit and some insects. The spherical nest is built on the upper branches of a bush or small tree. The home range is small compared with other arboreal squirrels, and does not change in size seasonally.

It has been suggested that one of the reasons for low densities of this species in Malaysian tropical rain forest is competition from the great variety of other arboreal vertebrates (such as birds, and especially primates) for food, especially fruits and leaves, which are among the food items preferred by squirrels (Saiful and Nordin 2004).
Systems:Terrestrial
Generation Length (years):4

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: The species is used as food.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no major threats to this species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no global conservation needs for this species, although some local needs haven't been suggested. For example, Saiful and Nordin (2004) stated the need for further comparative study on this species' abundance, density and distribution and its relationship to forest structure or habitat quality, spatially and temporally, in hill dipterocarp forest of Malaysia. However, for such a widespread and numerous species, the results would be primarily of academic, not applied conservation, interest.

Citation: Duckworth, J.W. 2016. Callosciurus caniceps. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T3594A22254694. . Downloaded on 25 September 2016.
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